APPLICATION FOR 2020 SESSION ONLINE!

The Field School in Medieval Archaeology and Bioarchaeology at Badia Pozzeveri (Lucca, Italy) is an academic program aimed at training students in archaeological and bioarchaeological field and laboratory methods. Excavations will take place at the church of “San Pietro a Pozzeveri” in the municipality of Altopascio. Badia Pozzeveri is located approximately 10 miles east of the city of Lucca, capital of the Tuscan province of the same name.

Dates

First session: June 22 to July 17
Second session: July 20 to August 14

Credits

Earning of 12 to 24 undergraduate ECTS credits through the University of Pisa

The monastery flourished during the 12-13th centuries thanks to its location along the Via Francigena, a major trade and pilgrimage route, which connected France and Northern Europe with Rome throughout the entire Middle Ages.    The monastery’s decline started in the 14th century and eventually led to its dissolution in the 15th century. San Pietro’s church remained as the village’s center of worship and is still in use.

Previous excavations conducted at the site exposed human burials dated to the middle ages, the renaissance and modern (18th-19th c.) times. Additionally, archaeological investigations revealed the buried remnants of a post-medieval building adjacent to the church, as well as structures belonging to the medieval church and cloister. Excavations at the site have exposed the 19th c. cemetery (including burials attributed to the cholera epidemics that afflicted Tuscany in 1855 AD) and identified buried remnants of a post-medieval building adjacent to the church, as well as structures belonging to the medieval church and cloister. During the 2020 field season, the field school will continue to explore the medieval and post-medieval levels of the site, including the cemetery as well as the monastery’s ruins.

San Pietro’s church was once part of a Camaldolese monastery, which was founded in the 11th century on the shores of Lake Bientina. The medieval lake, now entirely dried up, extended between Lucca and the Arno River.

The field school is a project created by the University of Pisa and managed by IRLAB (Institute for Research and Learning in Archaeology and Bioarchaeology), investigating biocultural complexity in the region surrounding Lucca during the Middle Ages. Specifically, the research project has the following objectives:

  • Excavation and analysis of the monastery’s cemetery, with particular attention to population demography, burial typology, and funerary ritual.
  • Bioarchaeological analysis of the medieval population buried at Badia Pozzeveri, with particular attention to biological diversity, paleopathology, and activity patterns.
  • Reconstruction of the settlement’s evolution from the Early Middle Ages until Modern times.
  • Analysis of material culture from a monastic center along the Via Francigena, with particular attention to trade dynamics, diffusion of technical knowledge and economic activities related to monastic life.

Learning objectives

The field school at Badia Pozzeveri is an outstanding opportunity for students to gain practical experience in archaeological excavation and bioarchaeological investigation by working side-by-side with leading researchers in the field.

An occasion to visit Italy

Badia Pozzeveri is located in a strategic position that allows you to reach the main cities and touristic localities easily. In 40 mins you can get to Pisa, the leaning tower city, in 20 mins to Lucca, a perfectly preserved medieval town surrounded by Renaissance walls. Florence, considered the birthplace of the Renaissance, featuring countless monuments and art masterpieces, is only 1 hour away by train. The connection to Rome is direct with a 3-hour trip. You can also reach the city of Volterra, located in the interior of Tuscany, with its many archeological monuments, and in 2 hours you can reach the pearls of Ligurian tourism, the Cinque Terre.

Apply online!