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Last year in the 2008 field season, 4 trenches, SF-2, 3, 4, and 5 were all opened in the area of OC3-Tripartite on the Piano del Tesoro. SF-3,4, and 5 were all located to the south of OC3-Tripartite in order to better understand the stratigraphy of the area and the function of the building. This year, in order to better understand their finds and the southern area of OC3-Tripartite, two more trenches are being excavated in the same part of the Piano del Tesoro. These trenches are Tesoro 55 and Tesoro 56.

Two finds from last year were especially prominent. Ed Clark, excavating in SF-3 (see EC-VII) discovered what appears to be a water channel dug down to the bedrock. The presence of an Archaic feline spout (catalogue # 20080190, see EC-VII pg 153 and 157) at the bottom of the channel suggests that this feature was in use during the Archaic phase of the site and was open during its destruction. This feature extends into SF-4, where it continues to run from the east to the west. An important ramification of this water channel is that it seems very likely that the bedrock was exposed in parts of the southern courtyard of the

complex. As Ed Clark noted in the his trenchbook for 2008 (EC-VII), it is impossible to study any earlier phase of the site in the area of the water channel since its builders appeared to have gone down to the level of the bedrock during its construction. While the channel also appeared in SF-4 as well; in the southern part of that trench there is a black layer of soil, ashy in texture, containing many carbon inclusions, and consistent with the layer associated with the destruction of the Orientalizing Building Complex.

Another prominent find occurred in SF-5 where a circular feature was discovered. It contained fragmentary, non-diagnostic pottery, but there was a dense concentration of seeds at the bottom. Testing of these and soil samples extracted from the circular feature yielded results similar to other votive deposits. It is therefore highly likely that the circular feature form SF-5 is indeed a votive pit.

Since T-56 lies to the south of SF-4, it is unlikely that that the Archaic drainage channel will appear in the confines of the trench, but the presence of the burn layer to the south of the drainage channel indicates that the Orientalizing strata of the site may still be intact and undisturbed in T-56. With that in mind, there are two primary excavation goals for T-56 in the 2009 field season.

  • By leaving the meter of soil between the southern boundary of SF-4 and the northern boundary of T-56 unexcavated, to better understand the stratigraphy of the area, especially in the northern and eastern baulks of the trench.
  • By excavating more of this area, to better understand the function of both the Archaic southern courtyard and especially the southern area of OC3-Tripartite.

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Suggested Citation

Joseph R. Vansuch. "JRV II (2009-06-21):5-8; Introduction from Italy/Poggio Civitate/Tesoro/Tesoro 56/2009, ID:616". (2017) In Murlo. Anthony Tuck (Ed.) . Released: 2017-10-04. Open Context. <>

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