Skip to comments.Shining new light on the history of Rome
Posted on 06/29/2013 6:52:12 AM PDT by NYer
(Vatican Radio) A team of archaeologists, historians, engineers and experts in Christian antiquities on Thursday inaugurated an important new archaeological site in Rome.
The site is located inside the area that belongs to the Basilica of St. Pauls outside the Walls and its adjoining Benedictine Monastery.
After a brief welcome speech by Cardinal James Harvey, Archpriest of the Basilica of St. Paul, members of the Vatican Museums-backed team who have been collaborating with members of the Pontifical Institute of Christian Archaeology and of Romes La Sapienza University, illustrated the importance of the new archaeological site.
Listen to the report by Linda Bordoni
Where Benedictine Monks had been growing their vegetables and tending to their vineyard for over 1000 years, a precious archaeological site has been brought to light.
Six years of hard work on the part of a team of archaeologists, engineers, historians and experts in restoration has revealed what had been a missing link in the history of the city of Rome.
In particular it shines the light on the time of Pope John VIII whose chief aim during his pontificate was to defend the Roman state and the authority of the Holy See at Rome from the Saracens.
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As Professor Lucrezia Spera of the Pontifical Institute of Christian Archaeology revealed, although there are many literary sources detailing events and costumes of the Early Middle Ages in the city of Rome, until now there were no consistent archaeological remains bearing witness to the period between the 8th and 9th century AD.
Thats why there is so much excitement surrounding the opening of the Archaeological Area in what used to be the pumpkin patch tended to by the Benedictine Monks of the Monastery of St. Pauls Outside the Walls.
Digs have revealed that what today is a complex made up of the Basilica, its quadriporticus, Bell Tower, Cloister and adjoining Monastery, was once a much larger settlement featuring a sanctuary for the poor, a well, a tower and housing for some 200 people.
While the meticulous work of archaeologists has revealed the lay of the ground and the kind of buildings that surrounded the ancient Basilica of St. Pauls outside the Walls, over 15,000 ceramic fragments, sculptures and coins put a face on the people of the time and narrate their everyday lives as well as define the chronology of historical events.
Archaeological Site - St. Paul Outside the Walls
Additional Photos Here
"Saracens." That is, Muslims. The period between the 8th and 9th centuries was characterized by waves of attacks on Europe by members of Mohammed's new delusional death cult, mostly Arabs from North Africa (although the ruling dynasties after the attacks were what would now be called Iraqis and Syrians). Spain fell, mostly because it was divided into tiny warring kingdoms - and didn't have anybody like John VIII!
“There is a lot of really old stuff under the ground”...ping
/ After all the muslims where the cause of this papal defense work anyway. Muslims should get some credit,. right?
Being conservative, I have problems with change. However..... it is growing on me.
The Saracens never actually invaded Italy as they had Sicily. The sack of Rome was a raid and they never actually got inside the city walls. They did, however, look Old St. Peters.