3 EC Intensive Course on ‘Interdisciplinary landscape archaeology of Bronze Age Central Italy’, Groningen Institute of Archaeology, University of Groningen
Around 1995 BC, during the Early Bronze Age, a giant eruption of Mount Vesuvius buried a flourishing landscape of villages and fields in the plains to the north and east of the volcano under more than a meter of ash. Inhabitants of Campanian sites such as Nola (`the Bronze Age Pompeii’) could barely escape with their lives. Italian archaeological research since the 1980s has conclusively shown that the population of the Campanian plain did not fully recover for several centuries after this so-called `Avellino’ event. Oddly, no one has yet wondered where the substantial Early Bronze Age population of Campania could have flown to, and what impacts it would have had there.
This intensive interdisciplinary course on geoarchaeological and palaeoecological approaches, relative and absolute dating methodology and demography in Italian protohistory is born out of the ‘Avellino Project’. This project was formulated to investigate the hypothesis of a cultural and demographic impact on landscape and society of the Pontine plain, located just south of Rome at considerable distance of Mount Vesuvius due to the ash fall.
During the course, students will acquire insight in the way different disciplines and methods can work together to test the project’s hypothesis. In the discussions, the potential and limitations and first results of the adopted methodology will be central. More in general students will acquire knowledge of and will read up on palaeogeographical and palaeoenvironmental reconstruction, Bronze Age settlement patterns, tephrachronology, absolute and relative chronology, and will practice with Bayesian modelling of C14 dating.
The Avellino project is a collaborative research initiative between the Universities of Groningen and Leiden and is funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientic Research (NWO). The full title of the project is “The Avellino Event: cultural and demographic effects of the great Bronze Age eruption of Mount Vesuvius”. The week will conclude with a one-day seminar on interdisciplinary landscape archaeology.
Organisers of the course
Peter Attema, Luca Alessandri, Wouter van Gorp, Martijn van Leusen (RUG)
dr. Luca Alessandri (RUG)
Prof. dr. Peter Attema (RUG)
Prof. Michael Dee (CIO/RUG)
dr. Marieke Doorenbosch (RUL)
dr. Wouter van Gorp (RUG)
Prof. Mike Field (RUL)
dr. Martijn van Leusen (RUG)
Prof. dr. Jan Sevink (UVA)
Invited speakers and moderators (seminar)
9-12 April – Workshop (2EC)
13 April – Seminar (1EC)