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Grant number like: RZ-249965-16

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Davidson College (Davidson, NC 28036-9405)
Darian Totten (Project Director: December 2015 to present)
Giovanni De Venuto (Co Project Director: February 2016 to present)
Goffredo Roberto (Co Project Director: August 2016 to present)
Life on the Lagoon: Reconstructing the Biography of Human-Landscape Dynamics on the Salpi Lagoon, Italy

Archaeological excavation and analysis of the transformation from the Roman to the medieval period at the environmentally precarious lagoon site of Salpi on the Adriatic in the Apulia region of southern Italy. See website at

This project studies human-environment interaction in the landscapes of the Salpi Lagoon, on the Adriatic Coast of southern Italy. This ancient lagoon, resource-rich but environmentally precarious, provides an opportunity to explore topics of humanistic relevance: the historical transformation from the Roman to the medieval worlds and the role of human-environment interaction as part of economic, social and cultural processes within this change. The project includes an integrated plan of archaeological excavation at Roman Salapia/Medieval Salpi; field survey and remote sensing on the lagoon; geomorphology; and cartographic and textual analysis. These data are brought together into a multi-phase GIS map to track changes and continuities over time, building a landscape biography of the lagoon. Thus, the project contributes a compelling historical case of how people mastered natural resources, influenced their environments, and confronted the challenges posed by both.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Archaeology; Classics; Medieval Studies

Collaborative Research

Research Programs

$200,000 (approved)
$200,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2017 – 5/31/2021