The unique, interdisciplinary nature of the department is demonstrated in the breadth of ongoing research projects and archaeological excavations by faculty and students alike at the Department of Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Studies.
Apulum Roman Villas Project (Romania)
Professor Matthew M. McCarty co-directs excavations of a Roman villa at Oarda (Romania). This is one of the first scientifically excavated villas in the entire province; the key questions driving the project are about the fine-grained diachronic processes of the formation, development, and disintegration of villa socio-economic systems in the region.
A preliminary geophysical survey of the site in March 2018 has confirmed the importance and massive scale of the site. The project piloted a range of micromorphological analyses for studying Roman agricultural production and digital archaeological recording systems. In conjunction with this project, Dr. McCarty led a field school in the summer of 2019.
Previously, from 2013 to 2018, he co-directed the excavation of a Roman temple and a medieval village in Alba Iulia, Romania. The archaeological project focused on reconstructing aspects of ancient cults and practices in the Roman Empire and understanding the dynamics of the post-Roman period in Dacia. The project also served as a field school for introducing students to modern excavation techniques and interpretive practices.
Horvat Midras Excavation (Israel)
Professor Gregg Gardener leads the archaeological field school at the Horvat Midras site in Israel. This course trains students in the principles and methods of field archaeology as practiced in the Mediterranean and Near East. The course provides students with an understanding of the archaeology and history of ancient Palestine, with special attention to the Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine, Ayyubid and Mamluk and Roman eras (fourth century BCE through sixteenth century CE). It includes fieldwork, guided study trips to other archaeological sites in the area, visits to museums, and lectures. This project collaborates with Dr. Orit Peleg-Barkat of the Institute of Archaeology of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Students will be doing more than just digging. Instead, you will contribute directly to the research goals of the excavation and create new scholarly knowledge. By excavating, recording, processing, and identifying new archaeological finds, you will contribute to discovering, collecting, and interpreting new sources in the ancient and medieval world.
Your participation in this course will directly enhance our knowledge of the history and material culture of the Near East. The coursework will also illuminate the region’s rural settlement patterns – a topic often overlooked and under-studied as scholars focus on urban sites. In many ways, students’ work in this course will shed new light on the region’s history.
This course can also count as credit toward UBC’s new minor in Jewish Studies.
Kalavasos and Maroni Built Environments Project (Cyprus)
Professor Kevin Fisher co-directs the Kalavasos and Maroni Built Environments (KAMBE) Project, an interdisciplinary investigation of the relationship between cityscapes, social interaction, and social change on the island of Cyprus during the Late Bronze Age (c. 1700-1100 BCE).
The project offers students opportunities for experiential learning in cutting-edge archaeological methods. A UBC archaeological field school is held in some years in conjunction with the KAMBE project.
Ancient Commentators on Aristotle Project
The Ancient Commentators on Aristotle project is currently co-directed by Professor Michael Griffin (UBC). Since 1987, the project has published over 100 volumes of translations of late ancient philosophical texts into English, usually for the first time. Based at King’s College London and the University of British Columbia, it has been described as ‘a massive scholarly endeavour of the highest importance’, with collaborating scholars across the world.
From Stone to Screen Project
Since 2011, AMNE graduate students have led a digitization project, From Stone to Screen. Strictly on a volunteer basis, students have worked to digitize our extensive squeeze collection (with over 1,000 pieces), collected by Malcolm McGregor, the head of this department, from 1954 to 1975.
This project includes a digital database of a substantial artifact collection donated to the department in 2005. In addition, the project wishes to allow public access to the two collections to facilitate teaching and research opportunities for those without direct access to the collection. Through various online databases and websites, and with the help of the AMNE faculty members, they have catalogued almost the entire artifact collection and have photographed about 70% of the squeezes.
Through the considerable efforts of our students, the project has become very successful and gathered support from the university. In early 2014 it received a Teaching and Learning Enhancement Fund Grant and used it to collaborate with the Digital Initiatives Centre at the Irving K Barber Learning Centre.
Project members were invited to present the project at the 2014 EAGLE Conference and wrote a blog for the Biblical Archaeological Review. In addition, they have set up extensive fundraising by selling products featuring squeezes and artifacts, applying for various grants, and soliciting donations on their website.
The Centre for the Study of Ancient Sicily (CSAS)
The Centre for the Study of Ancient Sicily (CSAS) at the University of British Columbia was created in 2007. It continues under the directorship of Emeritus Professor Roger Wilson.
Sicily is a wonderful laboratory for the study of ancient Mediterranean history. It is the largest island in the Mediterranean and is strategically set at its very centre, at the crossroads of major shipping lines. As a result, there is an abundant harvest of literary and historical evidence, a considerable amount of inscriptional data, a rich numismatic tradition, and a wealth of archaeology. There is, therefore, a vast set of varied data in need of publication and evaluation or re-evaluation; fresh syntheses are constantly required as our perspectives on the island’s past change.
Sicily is also a key area for studying processes of cultural contact: between Greeks and native peoples from the eighth to fourth centuries BC; between Indigenous peoples and the Phoenicio-Punic heritage of western Sicily over the same period; between Greeks and Phoenicians in the eighth and seventh centuries BC; between Greeks and Carthaginians from the sixth to the third centuries BC; and between the predominantly Greek culture of Sicily and the impact of Rome from the third century BC down into late antiquity. Sicily is a lively academic landscape with enormous potential for study from multifarious viewpoints: the evidence to be quarried is inexhaustible.
The Centre for the Study of Ancient Sicily has the following aims, both at UBC and beyond:
- to conduct and publish world-class research on ancient Sicily
- to offer undergraduate and graduate students the possibility of studying ancient Sicily, particularly via a field school
- to offer graduate students the possibility of studying for higher degrees at UBC on Sicilian topics
- to conduct first-rate archaeological fieldwork in Sicily
The CSAS has the following members in four categories:
Professor Sam Migliore
Kwantlen University College
A Sicilian-born anthropologist of Sicily and the Italian-Canadian community has written on the role played by the Sicilian antiquities in folklore and identity and a book on the evil eye (Mal'uocchiu: ambiguity, evil eye, and the language of distress, 1997); he has also co-edited Italian lives, Cape Breton memories (1999). His present research project, funded by SSHRC in 2005, is entitled ‘Culture, well-being and a sense of place.’
Emeritus Professor Roger Wilson
University of British Columbia
An Oxford classicist and ancient historian by training, is now principally an archaeologist, but one competent at handling a wide range of historical and archaeological evidence. He has been studying Sicily, often making more than one visit per annum, for 48 years and is well known throughout the island as the leading expert in the world on Roman imperial Sicily. He has close academic contacts with all the key players in Sicily, both in the universities and in the Soprintendenze of the Region’s Archaeological Service, and other Sicilian scholars worldwide. He has published very extensively on aspects of ancient Sicily, as well as three books, Piazza Armerina (1983), Sicily under the Roman Empire (1990), Caddeddi on the Tellaro: a late Roman villa in Sicily and its mosaics (2016). Since 2013 he has been directing excavations at Gerace in the province of Enna, in which UBC students participate; two SSHRC grants have funded these.
Professor Johannes Bergemann
University of Gottingen
Studied at Munich (PhD 1987) and Gottingen (Habilitation 1994) before teaching at Leipzig and Bochum, where he was also Dean of the Faculty of Arts (2003-05). Since August 2009, he has been Director of the Archaeological Institute of the University of Gottingen. He has directed the Gela survey in Sicily and is conducting another survey in the Agrigentino. His doctoral dissertation was on Roman equestrian statues (Romische Reiterstatuen, 1987), and he has published books on Attic grave reliefs (Demos und Thanatos, 1997), on the ancient Albanian city of Butrint (1998), and an introduction to Classical Archaeology (2000). His comprehensive multi-period survey of the hinterland of Gela was published in three volumes as Der Gela-Survey. 3000 Jahre Siedlungsgenschichte in Sizilien in 2010, and he is currently conducting a similar survey near Agrigento.
Professor Ernesto De Miro
Long-time former Superintendent of Antiquities for the Agriento Soprintendnenza, and also Professor Emeritus of Classical Archaeologyat the University of Messina, has made innumerable and invaluable contributions to Sicilian archaeology over the past fifty years, especially at Agrigento, Eraclea Minoa, and at many Indigenous hill-towns of the Sicilian interior, as well as at Lepcis Magna in Libya. His many publications include, most recently, Agrigento II. I santuari extraurbani. L’Asklepieion (2003), Leptis Magna: dieci anni di scavi archeologici nell'area del Foro Vecchio (with A. Polito) (2005) and Agrigento romana: gli edifici pubblici civili (with G. Fiorentini) (2011). A Festchift in his honour was published in 2003 as Archeologia del Mediterraneo: studi in onore di Ernesto De Miro. He is also the editor of the distinguished periodical Sicilia Antiqua.
Professor Giovanni Di Stefano
University of Cosenza
Director of the Polo dei Beni Culturali for Ragusa province and Professor of Late Antique Art and Archaeology at the University of Cosenza. His principal research has centred on the archaeology of the province of Ragusa in all periods of antiquity, on which he has written voluminously in the form of academic papers, conference contributions, books, and guides, with a notable focus on the Greek city of Camarina. He has also been Director of an archaeological mission at the Roman sanctuary site at Champlieu in the Forest of Compiegne, France, and excavations at Carthage in North Africa.
Dr. Lorenzo Guzzardi
Soprintendenza per i Beni Culturali, Siracusa
Currently director of the Polo for the cultural heritage of Syracuse province and formerly Soprintendente of Caltanissetta province, has conducted numerous important excavations in Syracuse and its province over the past twenty years. A former Director of the Lentini museum, he has also worked in Enna province, where he recently discovered Sicily’s latest example of a Greek theatre at Monagna di Marzo. He is the author of numerous contributions to the archaeology of eastern Sicily in learned journals, conference proceedings and books.
Dr. Maria Costanza Lentini
Formerly the director of the archaeological park and museum of Naxos, where she has directed excavations for many years; more recently, she is the Director of the Polo of the cultural heritage in Catania province. She has published extensively on all aspects of its archaeology. Her most recent books include Vasi del Wild Goat Style dalla Sicilia e dai musei Europei (2006) and Naxos di Sicilia. L’abitato coloniale e l’arsenale navale. Scavi 2003–2006 (2009). She has also co-edited Damarato: studi di antichità classica offerti a Paola Pelagatti (2000).
Professor Paola Pelagatti
Formerly Soprintendente alle Antichità in Syracuse (1973–9), and later Superintendent of Southern Etruria and Professor of Archaeology at Cosenza and Viterbo, is an Academician of the Accademiadei Lincei, Italy’s highest academic honour; she is also a Corresponding Member of the German Archaeological Institute and an Honorary Fellow of the British School at Rome. Her excavations at Syracuse, Naxos and Camarina have brought her worldwide renown. She is an acknowledged expert on archaic and classical Greek Sicily and ancient pottery in Sicily, both local and imported. A Festschift in her honour was published in 2000 as Damarato: studi di antichità classica offerti a Paola Pelagatti.
Dr. Jonathan Prag
University of Oxford
Fellow and Tutor at Merton College, Oxford, whose doctoral research concerned Sicily during the Roman Republic, is a historian who is conversant with the rich vein of epigraphic, numismatic and archaeological evidence. He is the author of several important articles on Republican Sicily, has edited Sicilia Nutrix plebes Romanae: rhetoric, law and taxation in Cicero’s Verrines (2007), and is joint editor of both Petronius: a handbook (with I. Redpath) (2013) and of The Hellenistic West (with J. Quinn) (2013).
Dr. Francesca Spatafora
Soprintendenza per i Beni Culturali, Palermo
Director of the Polo for the cultural heritage of Palermo province and Director of the Museo Archeologico Regionale of Palermo, where she supervised its spectacular new display of Greek and Roman antiquities on the ground floor; she is a long-time colleague and collaborator of both Professors Wilson and De Angelis. Elected a member of the German Archaeological Institute in Rome, she has conducted many excavations in western Sicily over the past 25 years in Palermo and its hinterland. She is the author or co-author of numerous specialist papers and books, including Monte Maranfusa (2003) and Das Eigene und das Andere: Griechen, Sikaner und Elymer: neue archaeologische Forschungen im antiken Sizilien (2004).
Dr. Stefano Vassallo
Soprintendenza per i Beni Culturali, Palermo
Has directed excavations at the Greek colony of Himera for many years and sites in the hinterland, especially in the hinterland Colle Madore e Montagna dei Cavalli. His books include Colle Madore (1999), Himera: città greca (2005) and (with F. Spatafora) Das Eigene und das Andere: Griechen, Sikaner und Elymer (2004), and he is also the author of numerous specialist papers. His most recent project has been the spectacular excavation of over 7000 burials from the northern necropolis of Himera, which included victims of both the iconic Battle of Himera in 480 BC and the battle in 409 BC.
All graduate students at UBC who have research interests which embrace some aspect of Sicily will be invited to become research associates of CSAS; but any graduate student who can demonstrate an interest in and knowledge of res Sicilianae may also request enrolment from the Director.
In 2024 and 2025 there are two Research Associates in the Centre, Fabrizio Ducati and Maximilian Kubon.
Fabrizio Ducati holds a BA (2014) and MA (2016) from the University of Palermo, and a PhD (2020) jointly from the Universities of Palermo and Aix-Marseille, writing a thesis on Roman pottery from the excavations and survey at Cignana, east of Agrigento. A summary of his PhD will soon appear in Antiquité Tardive, and a revised edition of the whole work has been accepted for publication by Archaeopress (Oxford). He has published six papers on a range of topics in books (e.g. Akragas Dialogues , published by De Gruyter) and journals (such as Mélanges de l’École française de Rome [also 2020]). He has also jointly edited a book on Lilibeo e il Mare (2022). He has held Fellowships at the École française de Rome (2018) and at the Roman-Islam Center at the University of Hamburg, where he spent four months in 2022–2023. Dr Ducati was also elected to the prestigious Simon Keay Award in Mediterranean Archaeology at the British School at Rome, spending three months there in 2023. He has given invited lectures on a variety of topics in Rome, Hamburg and Prague as well as in Sicily. Dr Ducati has worked as pottery consultant on many projects, e.g. on the University of Arizona ones at Segesta and near Marsala in Sicily, for the University of Graz at Ostia, as well as on other research investigations in Scillato (PA), Malta and (on medieval pottery) in Palermo itself, as well as at Sidi Mechreg in Tunisia. He was awarded a prestigious Marie Skłodowska-Curie Global Fellowship in 2023 for a project entitled ‘Frontiers inside Roman Sicily’ (FIRS), which started on 1st January 2024 and will continue until 30th September 2026. He spends twelve months in UBC between 1st April 2024 and 31st March 2025.
Maximilian Kubon has a BA (2019) from Johann Wolfgang Goethe University at Frankfurt am Main in Germany, where his undergraduate dissertation was on Herodotus’ constitutional debate (3.80–82). He earned an MA with distinction from the same University (2021), writing on the development of statehood in the Western Greek poleis, for which he was awarded a prize from the Kopper Stiftung. Since July 2021 he has been enrolled in a PhD program, again at the University of Frankfurt. The working title of his doctoral dissertation, building on his MA work, is ‘Between inclusion and exclusion. The formation and development of statehood in early Western Greek poleis’. In October 2023 he lectured on political expulsion and reintegration in archaic Gela and Syracuse to an international conference at the Freie Universität in Berlin on Urban Spaces: Formation and Transformation in Ancient Sicily and Southern Sicily. He will be coming to UBC as a Visiting International Research Student in September 2024, and will stay five months with us, until the end of February 2025.
Emeritus Professor Paul Mosca
University of British Columbia
Is a Phoenicio-Punic epigraphist who works on Phoenicio-Punic language, culture, and religion across the entire Mediterranean. He has been closely involved with both the American and British excavations at Carthage and is an expert on the stelai from the Sanctuary of Tanit there (the ‘Tophet’). He is a leading authority also on the Phoenician, and Punic institutionalized rite of infant sacrifice, which took place in the Tophet, not only at Carthage but at Motya in Sicily and elsewhere, a topic on which he is writing a book.
Fieldwork is an essential part of historical research: it provides the oxygen for fresh discoveries, which allow the subject to be continually re-assessed and our knowledge about the ancient world to be ever-expanding.
Student involvement in this fieldwork will be strongly encouraged and promoted by establishing field schools in Sicily. This provides UBC students, both undergraduate and graduate, with experiential education in which valuable skills, particularly scientific and life skills, will be gained.
UBC’s recent and current Sicilian field projects:
Campanaio and Castagna are two archaeological sites, 1 km apart, about 25 km west of Agrigento in Sicily. Both were discovered by me during field survey research and partly excavated by teams directed by myself. Castagna was an isolated farmhouse (with 15 rooms, all with earth floors) of early imperial date (c. AD 50), with hellenistic occupation below. It was twice altered and enlarged before its collapse c. 180/200. Despite its humble form, there were some high-status finds, including lead-glazed ware from Tarsus in Cilicia and a mould-blown glass beaker with a Greek inscription (“Rejoice! Enjoy yourself!”), probably also from the eastern Mediterranean. Animal bones were mostly sheep/goats, but also present were tortoise, hare, and deer (red, roe, and considerable quantities of fallow deer). A pit was dug in one of the ruined buildings in the fourth century. Campanaio was a small agricultural village of late hellenistic date (second/first centuries BC), with two kilns of that date producing roof tiles. It was occupied into the early imperial period, when a large cess-pit indicates a possible tanning industry. After a period of abandonment, there was renewed activity in the late fourth century (c. 375 AD), when new storehouses were erected, as well as a domestic building further north. The structures had stone foundations and pisé (rammed earth) superstructures, a technique that lasted in Sicily from archaic Greek times down into late antiquity. Also to the late Roman period belongs a stone vat for storing olive oil, and dolia (huge storage vessels) indicating the production of wine. What is likely to have been an amphora kiln, reused in its final phase for the production of lime, was also active in the fourth and fifth centuries. Distorted wasters show that amphorae of the small flat-bottomed Keay 52 type, probably for wine, as well as tiles and mortaria (mixing bowls for the preparation of food), were all manufactured in this kiln. Carbonized deposits yielded grapes, lentils, and two varieties of wheat. Deer bones (red, roe, and fallow) came second only to sheep/goats in fifth-century deposits, a reminder that Sicily was far more afforested in antiquity than it is today, and that venison (as at Castagna) was not only the privilege of the rich.
Occupation came to a violent end in a disastrous fire c. AD 460, possibly a consequence of a raid by Vandals based in north Africa (known from ancient sources to have harried southern Sicily at this time); some material of later fifth- and sixth-century date shows, however, that there was limited activity on the site even after this. Three male bodies buried according to the Muslim rite were later laid in the ruins. The excavations have been the subject of several detailed preliminary papers, but the hoped-for pottery reports on the hellenistic coarse wares and amphorae, and on the whole of the important late Roman assemblages, have not materialized, preventing final publication. All these finds are now being studied afresh for publication by Dr Fabrizio Ducati, who currently holds a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Fellowship (2024–2026), and who is spending twelve months working on this project at UBC between April 2024 and March 2025.
The Gerace project, province of Enna, Sicily, is investigating the site of a Roman villa in the heart of Sicily, situated in fertile agricultural land with an extensive panorama. It was discovered by accident in 1994 when a torrent burst its banks and cut through one corner of an ancient structure, exposing a mosaic. Subsequent limited excavation discovered the ground plan on the surface of a small structure with five rooms and an irregular L-shaped corridor. Trial trenching descending to floor level suggested that there were geometric mosaic pavements in a corridor and in an apsed room. This building was further partially investigated in 2007, but has not been completely excavated.
In May 2012 UBC conducted its own first investigations at Gerace, involving a team from the British School at Rome, which conducted geophysical survey over a wide area of the 3-ha site. This identified a 50-m long building to the east of the structure with mosaics, as well as several outbuildings and the location of five kilns. The aims of the Gerace project, for which funding for five years was obtained from SSHRC in April 2013, and a further three years in a renewed grant in 2018, are therefore:
(a) to excavate sample areas of the Roman structures more extensively;
(b) to establish the chronology and building phases of the site, to determine the date of both the original construction of the villa and its destruction, and to assess the nature of any post-Roman occupation;
(c) to assess the function of the various buildings at the site (residential or agricultural?), and to monitor any changes over time;
(d) to recover ceramic remains (pottery, lamps, amphorae, tile) with a view to understanding both local ceramic circulation in the Roman period, and to evaluate the extent of imported ceramics, so as to understand better Gerace’s trading links with other parts of Sicily and of the Mediterranean;
(e) to recover faunal and carbonized seed remains in order to establish the range of plants grown and animals raised (or at any rate consumed) by the inhabitants of Gerace.
From mid-May to mid-June 2013 the first season of excavation was conducted at Gerace with the help of 13 students from UBC. Two rooms in the ‘villa-like building’ were excavated, and proved to be service rooms, one with a bench and a stone ‘workstation’ (to waist height) as well as an earth floor (perhaps a kitchen), and the other with white plaster on the walls and a white mortar floor. The building, for which a late second century date had been proposed by one previous excavator, and an early fourth century date by another, was dated to not earlier than AD 360 on the basis of African red slip pottery which formed part of the white mortar floor in the latter. Part of the mosaic-paved corridor outside these rooms was also investigated, and the edge of what was clearly the hot pool of a small bath-suite, with white mortar floor still in situ and its hypocaust stoke-hole preserved, was also discovered. The building was destroyed by fire: pottery and two intact African red slip lamps of the second half of the fifth century show that this occurred not earlier than c. AD 450.
Adjacent to this structure, the 50m-building first identified by geophysics proved to have an intact stone paved floor but very few finds; there is evidence to think that it might not have quite been completed when it suddenly collapsed, probably in an earthquake. It clearly predates the bath-suite and its stoke hole which demolished part of the long building’s west wall in order to provide room to fire the hypocaust. Pottery in the make-up for the long building’s floor suggest that it is not earlier than the second quarter of the fourth century (and part of an earlier building was identified beneath); it may have been under construction in AD 361/3 when it was flattened by an earthquake which Libanius reports as having destroyed most of the cities of Sicily at that time. The building’s function is enigmatic; although it might just possibly have been used as stables, it is more likely to have been a large estate granary.
The finds included 99 tile stamps using 10 different dies, with some tiles receiving as many as three stamps. All seem to have been part of a single production, by a landowner called Philippianus whose name recurs on many of them, and were made for the roof of the villa built after c. AD 370. That he might have raised prize racehorses at Gerace is suggested by some of the stamps which feature horses with head plumes, associated also with victory crowns and palm branches. Vegetius and others report that Sicilian circus ponies were highly rated in the Roman world, and Philippianus might have been raising them in this well-watered central area of Sicily in late Roman times. Indeed horses are still kept on the Gerace estate to this day. There is a unusually marked presence of horse bones in the ancient faunal assemblages, including foals and even an equine milk tooth, suggesting that there was a stud at the estate. A bath-house, excavated between 2016 and 2019, has produced an intact mosaic in its frigidarium which has an inscription on all four sides (uniquely so in the entire Roman Empire). From this we learn the name of the estate (the praedia Philippianorum) and that there had been either 'joy for' or 'joy at' the Capitolini (Capitolinis gaudium). This is either a reference to a new family (intermarrying with the Philippiani?) or else a reference to the Capitoline contests in Rome (the certamina Capitolina), instituted by Domitian in AD 86 and still going strong in the late fourth century. If the latter is the correct interpretation is correct, it implies that Philippianus trained horses at Gerace and entered them for chariot races at these Greek-style games, sometime in the second half of the fourth century AD, and won there.
The results of the excavation have been so far published in a series of annual reports in the journal Mouseion (2015 and 2017–2021) and in parallel, in Italian, in Sicilia Antiqua (2015 and 2018) and more recently in Cronache di Archeologia (2019–2022). An additional paper, on the tile-stamps found in 2013, was published in Journal of Roman Archaeology 27 (2014), and the bath-house was studied in American Journal of Archaeology for 2020. A summary of all six years of excavation can be found in C. Prescott et al., eds., Trinacria. ‘An Island outside Time’. International Archaeology in Sicily, Oxford: Oxbow Books 2021, in Sicilia Antiqua 2024 (forthcoming), and elsewhere. The discovery of whipworm eggs in a deposit inside one vessel, so proving its use as a chamber pot, was published in Journal of Archaeological Science Reports in 2022.
No excavation was able to take place in 2014 but it continued in five annual seasons from 2015 to 2019. Brief summaries of each of these can be found at the following:
A short study season took place in 2022, when a further campaign of geophysical research was conducted, which found a further set of kilns to the west of the main site.
The Kaukana project, province of Ragusa, Sicily, also funded by SSHRC, was designed to investigate the chronology, character, development and commercial contacts of a late Roman and Byzantine coastal village, and to place it in its wider socio-economic context within late Roman and early Byzantine Sicily and the wider Mediterranean world. This project, in close collaboration with the Soprintendenza per i Beni Culturali Ambientali di Ragusa, was set up in 2008. Three seasons of excavation took place between 2008 and 2010. Reports have been issued in Journal of Roman Archaeology in 2009, in Minerva and Current World Archaeology in 2010, in American Journal of Archaeology in 2011, in International Journal of Osteoarchaeology [with C. Sulosky Weaver] in 2012, in Mouseion (volume 10.2 dated 2010) and in Phoenix in 2013, and in Sicilia Antiqua and in Mediterranean Archaeology (volume 25, dated 2012) [the latter with J. Ramsay] in 2014. Also published in 2014 was a contribution on Kaukana to a conference proceedings (P. Pensabene and C. Sfameni (eds.), La Villa restaurata e i nuovi studi sull'edilizia residenziale tardoantica, Bari). A paper on an unusual object from the excavations, a thimble, was published in Oxford Journal of Archaeology in November 2016. Translations into Italian of the last paper and of that in Phoenix were published in Sicily in 2017. Short papers for the general public about the project were published in Perth, Western Australia, in 2015, and in the British journal Antiquus in 2020. The results of the excavation were presented as the XIth Byvanck Lecture, delivered in Leiden at the National Museum of Antiquities on 28th November 2017. The text of that, with illustrations, was published in a printed version to coincide with the lecture; it is also available online here (press ‘download booklet’ in this document).
A post-excavation season was conducted in 2012, and the final volume, with reports from a dozen specialist contributors (some still pending) is in preparation. It is hoped that this volume will be published by Peeters in Leuven as a BABesch Supplement.