NEH banner

[light] [dark]

[Return to Query]

Products for grant RZ-249965-16

RZ-249965-16
Life on the Lagoon: Reconstructing the Biography of Human-Landscape Dynamics on the Salpi Lagoon, Italy
Darian Totten, Davidson College

Grant details: https://securegrants.neh.gov/publicquery/main.aspx?f=1&gn=RZ-249965-16

Salapia Exploration Project (Web Resource)
Title: Salapia Exploration Project
Author: Darian Totten
Abstract: The Salapia Exploration Project was started in 2013 to explore the human and natural landscapes of the Salpi Lagoon and the Monte di Salpi in Apulia, Italy. Ours is a collaborative, Italo-American project that brings together scholars and students from the University of Foggia (Foggia, Italy) and Davidson College (NC, USA).
Year: 2016
Primary URL: http://http://salapiaexplorationproject.com/

Salapia Romana. Salpi Medievale (Ceringnola, FG): Notizie Dagli Scavi 2017 (Article)
Title: Salapia Romana. Salpi Medievale (Ceringnola, FG): Notizie Dagli Scavi 2017
Author: Roberto Goffredo
Author: Sara Loprieno
Author: Darian Marie Totten
Abstract: This paper presents the excavation data from the 2017 field season at Roman Salapia and Medieval Salpi, towns which occupied a similar location along the Salpi Lagoon, a salty lake on the Adriatic Coast of northern Apulia. Heretofore, details of the progression from the Roman to medieval settlement have remained elusive. To clarify this history, we opened two trenches, one atop the topographical feature of the Monte di Salpi, long-believed to encase the remains of the medieval castrum, and one immediately below, along the plain, where evidence of the Roman and Late Antique town is most apparent. From the settlement adjacent to the lagoon, we determined these patterns: already in the mid-5th c. CE, the remains of what was a Roman utilitarian structure were re-inhabited by a series of huts within the preserved walls. A village occupation continued into the 7th c. CE, with a new occupation in the 8thc. CE. Abandonment occurred in the 9th c. CE, a break in settlement that persisted for perhaps two centuries until the foundation of Salpi in the early 11th c. (date from episcopal records). The excavation on the Monte has revealed structures of the 13th and 14th c. Through the stratigraphic section of a late 15th c. well, extending to the bottom of the Monte to about 5 m, we have convincing proof that the medieval castrum was constructed atop the remains of the Roman town. Additionally, these buildings, close to the western gate into the city, might offer details of urbanism near the Porta dei Calabri, before their destruction by an earthquake in 1456.
Year: 2018
Primary URL: http://www.fastionline.org/docs/FOLDER-it-2018-426.pdf
Format: Journal
Periodical Title: Fold&R: The Journal of FastiOnline, number 426

Painted and Common Wares From Salapia (Cerignola, Italy): Archaeometric data from 4th-8th c. AD samples from the Apulian coast (Article)
Title: Painted and Common Wares From Salapia (Cerignola, Italy): Archaeometric data from 4th-8th c. AD samples from the Apulian coast
Author: Gliozzo, Elisabetta
Author: Goffredo, Roberto
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Abstract: This paper presents an analysis of the first ceramic assemblage of painted and common wares from the archaeological site of Salapia. This collection of samples from the fourth to eighth centuries AD has been analysed by means of optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and bulk geochemistry to verify whether this port town, strategically sited along the Adriatic coast, hosted a production of ceramics and, if so, to differentiate locally produced from imported specimens. Four groups of ceramics, selectively made of either sub-Apennine clays or alluvial sediments, were distinguished. The first, composed of flat-bottom amphoras, was identified as likely imported. In the remaining three groups, all consisting of tablewares, the samples were locally made, using clays which were different from each other but equally sourced from alluvial sediments. They also represent what functional ceramic production was carried out either in or quite close to the archaeological site.
Year: 2018
Primary URL: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12520-018-0708-5
Format: Journal
Periodical Title: Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, online Sept 2018, in print, une 2019, Volume 11, Issue 6, pp 2659–2681
Publisher: Springer Berlin

Da Salapia romana a Salpi medievale, tra cesure e trasizioni: nuovi dati (Book Section)
Title: Da Salapia romana a Salpi medievale, tra cesure e trasizioni: nuovi dati
Author: Goffredo, Roberto
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Author: Valenzano, Vincenzo
Editor: Sogliani, F
Editor: Gargiulo, B
Editor: Annunziata, E
Abstract: Le ricerche archeologiche condotte a partire dal 2014 nel sito della città romana di Salapia (Cerignola, FG), hanno consentito di aprire una finestra di studio su un comparto centrale del municipium che, alla fine del I secolo a.C., M(arcus) Hostilius rifondò sulle sponde del bacino lagunare oggi ricalcato dall’invaso delle Saline di Margherita di Savoia (DE VENUTO et al. 2015; IID. 2016; IID. 2017; fig. 1). Nell’area delle insulae XII, XVI e XIX gli scavi hanno portato alla luce una domus e due edifici adiacenti (Edificio A e B) con fasi di vita e uso comprese tra il tardo I e il IV secolo d.C.; un nucleo di tabernae; una piccola conceria, annessa alla domus. Le ricerche hanno inoltre evidenziato come alla destrutturazione dell’impianto urbano romano, tra tardo V e VI secolo, fosse seguita l’organizzazione di uno spazio frequentato sino alla fine dell’VIII secolo d.C. A partire dal 2017, l’indagine si è estesa anche al Monte di Salpi, l’altura posizionata al centro del pianoro terrazzato che si affaccia sul bacino delle saline e incombe sull’area interessata dalla città romana. Sulla sommità di questa collina, la cartografia storica e le fonti scritte localizzano l’abitato di Salpi, civitas attestata nelle fonti documentarie a partire dal 1074, tra i principali centri del Tavoliere meridionale sino al suo abbandono, nella seconda metà del XVI secolo.
Year: 2018
Primary URL: https://mcgill.on.worldcat.org/oclc/1055461829
Publisher: All'Insegna al Giglio
Book Title: Società degli Archeologi Medievisti Italiani, proceedings of the VIII Congresso Nazionale di Archeologia Medievale, Matera 2018. Pp. 222-227

The Biography of a Reoccupied Landscape: Making Community at Salapia (Apulia, Italy) 6th-8th c. CE (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: The Biography of a Reoccupied Landscape: Making Community at Salapia (Apulia, Italy) 6th-8th c. CE
Author: Goffredo, Roberto
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Abstract: On the Adriatic coast of southern Italy, the site of Salapia has been the focus of archaeological excavations since 2014. As a town established in the 1st c. BCE, with a long occupation into the late 8th c. CE, and later resettled by a medieval castrum, Salapia provides a unique opportunity to theorize the relationship between successive phases of settlement and social meaning in the long-term. Evidence from the 2018 campaign has detailed how, starting in the late 5th c. CE and continuing for the duration of the 6th c. CE, inhabitants repurposed the structures of the Roman and Late Antique town, with each room reworked and re-inhabited, attesting to the concentration and intensity of occupation. Such patterns continue into the 7th c. CE, although the remains of the former Roman structures were in an ever more ruined state. The continuous reoccupation wore them away, just as it was dependent on them both materially and conceptually. These standing remains appear to have still helped solidify the community connections in this landscape, and to make it distinct from other places along the coast. By the 8th c. CE, the ruins of Salapia were barely visible across the eastern portion of the coastal plain, where the new village of huts was organized differently from previous settlements. We might then identify a more decisive break with what had come before, and a transformation in the relationship between people and this landscape that was diversely (perhaps less) cohesive and sustaining of community ties, as a period of abandonment shortly followed. If the ruins were better preserved further west, they did not entice new inhabitants to them for at least another two centuries.
Date: 01/05/2019
Conference Name: Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting 2019 (San Diego, CA)

Roman Salapia-Medieval Salpi: Urban Transformations and the Shifting Material Legacy of a port on the Adriatic Coast of Apulia (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Roman Salapia-Medieval Salpi: Urban Transformations and the Shifting Material Legacy of a port on the Adriatic Coast of Apulia
Author: Goffredo, Roberto
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Abstract: Recent studies of both long-lived and extinct towns in Italy, and the empire generally, have turned to interrogating the later centuries of habitation to model patterns of continuity and abandonment in myriad forms. The site of Salapia on the Adriatic Coast of Southern Italy offers a compelling example through which to investigate the character of such settlement transformations over more nearly fifteen hundred years. While the Roman settlement was primarily located on the extensive plain adjacent to the Salpi lagoon, its western portion forms the initial deposit atop which subsequent occupations were installed, forming the topographic feature of the Monte di Salpi. The Monte’s latest habitation phases are dated to the late 13th c.-early 14th c. C.E., attesting to the spatial continuity of settlement through time. New evidence from the 2017 season allows us to theorize the shifts from the Roman and late antique phases to the medieval town, providing material manifestations of how such persistent but consistently fluctuating occupation strategies were brought about. It is a narrative written through negative archaeological features as much as through positive ones. Two new trenches, one on the Monte and one at its base on the plain, provide evidence of the link between the end of late antiquity to the emergence of the medieval community.
Date: 01/05/2018
Conference Name: Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting 2018 (Boston, MA).

“A World in Flux: Material Change and Historical Meaning in Coastal Apulia, Italy” (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: “A World in Flux: Material Change and Historical Meaning in Coastal Apulia, Italy”
Abstract: A look at how to manage change and continuity at the site of Salapia, through the case of the post-Roman settlement
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Date: 04/08/2019
Location: University of Ottawa

Building Community at Salapia (Apulia, Italy): “Ruins” and their role, then and now (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Building Community at Salapia (Apulia, Italy): “Ruins” and their role, then and now
Abstract: Salapia, a port-town on the Adriatic Coast of southeastern Italy, was founded in the 1st c. BCE and developed as a vibrant urban settlement, maintained into the mid-5th c. CE, whose fortunes were closely tied to its trading connections and its salt production. Our excavations from 2014-2018 have identified the remains of an elite Roman domus, a tannery, a possible small bath, and a taberna, installed and then refurbished over five centuries. However, starting in the second half of the 5th c. CE, residents reoccupied the structures of Roman Salapia, while transforming the material characteristics to suit their needs. Rather than reading them as ruins, the skeleton of the Roman structures informed the organization of the community over time, encouraging the continued habitation of this coastal zone as a resource much like the salt still extracted from the lagoon landscape. Some still standing remains were fundamental perhaps to forming the foundation on which medieval castrum of Salpi was constructed, while those covered over were robbed to build the new town. In these ways, over the centuries, the inhabitants of this coast made and re-made materially and socially their communities. Still today, the Monte di Salpi, an artificial “hill” that encapsulates the remains of the medieval town, provides a touchstone for the local community of Trinitapoli, the site of its earliest history and what it means to be a salinaro (inhabitant of the lagoon landscape). So our work, resurrecting these ruins and making the local community a fundamental part of this conversation, has made it clear that this is not a past “dead and gone”, but rather, that the archaeological remains form part of a living legacy that brings Salapia into the 21st century.
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Date: 02/28/2019
Location: Archaeological Institute of America, Western Illinois Chapter, Knox College (Galesburg, IL)

Re-Inhabiting a Roman Town: Salapia (Puglia, Italy) and its Lagoon Landscape in the 5th-8th c. CE (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: Re-Inhabiting a Roman Town: Salapia (Puglia, Italy) and its Lagoon Landscape in the 5th-8th c. CE
Abstract: A review of the archaeological evidence for the post-Roman town at Salapia, on Italy's Adriatic Coast.
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Date: 10/14/2018
Location: Archaeological Institute of America, Ottawa Chapter, University of Ottawa

Local ceramics and urban change at Salapia (4th-7th c. CE): an assessment of painted common ware assemblages in their lived contexts (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Local ceramics and urban change at Salapia (4th-7th c. CE): an assessment of painted common ware assemblages in their lived contexts
Author: Darian Marie Totten
Abstract: The excavations at Salapia, on the Adriatic Coast of Puglia in southern Italy, have revealed the remains of the Late Antique town and early medieval reoccupation. Over this timeframe, the character of the town changed, with buildings of the Roman and early Late Antique phase repurposed for huts made of organic materials. The residents of Salapia were apparently negotiating new ways of inhabiting the urban fabric, prompted by transformations within the community, that merit further investigation. To illuminate these complex dynamics of spatial organization and daily life further, I add a detailed analysis of the common ware ceramics recovered from contexts securely dated from the fourth to seventh centuries CE. Through a comparison of the ware forms that define these assemblages, one notes that they remained quite qualitatively and quantitatively consistent over time, as did the standard of production. Large basins, sometimes richly decorated, pitchers, table amphorae, and small jars and bowls, made up the “kit” of both table service and storage over these centuries, often decorated with their distinctive “red” paint, haphazardly applied. That these wares were produced locally, by artisans who were possibly members of this community, allowed them to reflect both the tastes and needs of Salapia’s inhabitants within a broader regional milieu. While scholars studying other Apulian contexts have placed interpretative emphasis on the minor variations in typology that occurred in local wares above all in the seventh century, linking them to the arrival of the Lombards, Salapia’s table ceramics speak more pointedly to continuity, even across the decades when southern Italy’s political circumstances were most in flux. Additionally, both the production and use of these wares perhaps attest to the solidity of social ties, marked by a common interest in sustaining artisans, and the shared experience of using the same vessels at table on a daily basis.
Date: 01/04/2020
Conference Name: Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting, Washington DC

Local ceramics and urban change at Salapia (4th-7th c. CE): an assessment of painted common ware assemblages in their lived contexts (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Local ceramics and urban change at Salapia (4th-7th c. CE): an assessment of painted common ware assemblages in their lived contexts
Author: Darian Marie Totten
Abstract: Excavations at Salapia, on the Adriatic Coast of Puglia in southern Italy, have revealed the remains of the Late Antique town and early medieval reoccupation. Over this timeframe, the character of the town changed, with buildings of the Roman and early Late Antique phase repurposed for huts made of organic materials. The residents of Salapia were apparently negotiating new ways of inhabiting the urban fabric, prompted by transformations within the community, that merit further investigation. To illuminate these complex dynamics of spatial organization and daily life further, I add a detailed analysis of the common ware ceramics recovered from contexts securely dated from the fourth to seventh centuries CE. Through a comparison of the ware forms that define these assemblages, one notes that they remained quite qualitatively and quantitatively consistent over time, as did the standard of production. Large basins, sometimes richly decorated, pitchers, table amphorae, and small jars and bowls, made up the “kit” of both table service and storage over these centuries. That these wares were produced locally by artisans who were possibly members of this community, allowed them to reflect both the tastes and needs of Salapia’s inhabitants within a broader regional milieu. While scholars studying other Apulian contexts have placed interpretative emphasis on the minor variations in typology that occurred in local wares above all in the seventh century, linking them to the arrival of the Lombards, Salapia’s table ceramics speak more pointedly to continuity, even across the decades when southern Italy’s political circumstances were most in flux. Additionally, both the production and use of these wares perhaps attest to the solidity of social ties, marked by a common interest in sustaining artisans, and the shared experience of using the same vessels at table on a daily basis, even as the town slowly lost its urban character.
Date: 01/03/2020
Conference Name: Archaeological Institute of American Annual Meeting, Washington DC

The life and ‘death’ of a Roman town: archaeology as history of Italy’s Adriatic Coast (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: The life and ‘death’ of a Roman town: archaeology as history of Italy’s Adriatic Coast
Abstract: This paper was a public outreach lecture for McGill University's Homecoming festivities, as hosted by the History and Classical Studies Department. This was attended by students, faculty and McGill affiliates, as well as alumni and members of the Montreal community
Author: Darian Marie Totten
Date: 09/20/2019
Location: McGill University

Salpi tra Medioevo ed Età Moderna: nascita, sviluppo e scomparsa di una città, MEFRM, 133, 2, 2021, (Article)
Title: Salpi tra Medioevo ed Età Moderna: nascita, sviluppo e scomparsa di una città, MEFRM, 133, 2, 2021,
Author: R. Goffredo
Abstract: This article traces the history of Salpi from the medieval textual record and the most recent archaeological work on the Monte di Salpi
Year: 2021
Format: Journal
Periodical Title: Melanges de l'École de Rome-Moyen Âge
Publisher: Open Edition Journals

Daily life in the shadow of late antique ‘decline’: urban case studies from Apulia (Conference/Institute/Seminar)
Title: Daily life in the shadow of late antique ‘decline’: urban case studies from Apulia
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Abstract: While some scholars still argue for a stark decline in the appearance and quality of urban life in late antiquity and the early middle ages, others have opted for a softer model of “transition”. With this paper, through a contextualized approach, I hope to demonstrate the value of moving beyond these paradigms. Since 2014, I have excavated the coastal town site of Salapia in Apulia. The complexity of its archaeological deposits and the continued persistence of activity across different phases, has made me ever more intrigued by not just how these changes were brought about from the mid-4th to late 7th c. CE, but their impact on the community living there. As a site where we have yet to reveal any monuments, the “unremarkable” and “everyday” spaces encourage and require reconstructing patterns of daily activities to access urban experience. Even a diocese with named bishops and continued connection to the Mediterranean trading network in late antiquity did not halt the slow degradation of the urban fabric at Salapia; nor did the degradation chase away all inhabitants in a single moment. By engaging with theories of industrial ruination (Mah 2012), the material world –the slow undoing of the urban fabric itself –is foregrounded a fundamental part of the social conversation that made and remade the community at Salapia over time. Every town is the sum of its material signature and the humans that engage and interact in and with its fabric. Nonetheless, comparing the spatial and artifactual remains from Salapia to those of other urban centers in southern Italy (Herdonia and Egnathia) better contextualizes the material choices the inhabitants made in negotiating changes that were local in character, as well as their responses to broader shifts in the Adriatic and Mediterranean ambits. Detailing this progressive decline matters because it is the making of Salapia’s local history. So, too, the changes to the community there would have affected the region as a whole.
Date Range: February 2021
Location: University of Toronto, Department of Classics

The ancient economies of a small port on the Adriatic: the case of Salapia (Puglia, Italy) from the 1st-8th c. CE. (Public Lecture or Presentation)
Title: The ancient economies of a small port on the Adriatic: the case of Salapia (Puglia, Italy) from the 1st-8th c. CE.
Abstract: The town of Salapia, located along the Adriatic Coast of Apulia in south-eastern Italy, is recorded by the architectural historian Vitruvius as the re-founding of the Daunian town of Salapia Vetus sometime in the 1st c. BCE. The siting of this new settlement along a lagoon was fortuitous: protected by dunes from the battering Adriatic Sea, it was afforded a natural harbor that offered the inhabitants a link to wider Mediterranean networks. This lagoon, at present, is one of the top sea salt producers in the whole Mediterranean Basin, and its medieval and early modern history is marked by evidence of coordinated curation and extraction of this resource; sparser ancient evidence points perhaps to similar circumstances in the Roman and Late Antique periods. The port and its salty resources would have impelled Salapia to connect to the outside world in intriguing and significant ways. A review of the imported ceramic wares -finewares and amphorae -over these centuries makes apparent not just into what networks Salapia was integrated but also the intensity of those connections. It is possible that Salapia was a clearinghouse and node for transport of Mediterranean products to the interior of the province of Apulia. For instance, even as the Roman empire was largely defunct by the 7th c. CE, and the town plan had unraveled, African finewares -albeit in reduced numbers -still made it into the hands of the town’s inhabitants, perhaps a residue of connections that were more apparent and strong in earlier centuries. Analyses of features from the urban plan also give us a more comprehensive picture of the local economy at Salapia.
Author: Totten, Darian Marie
Date: 04/11/2021
Location: Archaeological Institute of America, Milwaukee Society

Tra persistenze e discontinuità: analisi spaziali a Salapia-Salpi e nel suburbio (Article)
Title: Tra persistenze e discontinuità: analisi spaziali a Salapia-Salpi e nel suburbio
Author: Cardone A.
Author: Volpe V.
Abstract: Study of the spatial organization of the town of Salapia-Salpi, and its surrounding hinterland.
Year: 2021
Format: Other
Periodical Title: Oltre la Convenzione. Pensare, studiare e costruire il paesaggio 20 anni dopo, Atti del Convegno (Firenze 2020)


Permalink: https://securegrants.neh.gov/publicquery/products.aspx?gn=RZ-249965-16