Federica BOSCHI / Francesco BELFIORI / Giuseppe LEPORE
(Department of Archaeology, University of Bologna, Ravenna, Italy)

Abstract: In the context of the Senigallia Urban Archaeological Project, started in 2010 by an agreement between the Department of Archaeology of Bologna University, the Municipality of Senigallia and the Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici delle Marche, at the end of 2011 an important operation of archaeology was carried out in an urbanized space where building works were in progress for the realization of a new housing complex with underground garages. The procedure has contemplated a georadar survey of the whole area, which revealed some interesting reflections at a considerable depth. The following excavations were subjected to a constant archaeological monitoring, revealing a situation of extraordinary importance. In fact, the investigation has discovered a sacred complex probably founded by the first Roman colonists at the beginning of the 3th century B.C., and the remains of the Roman urban walls. Stratigraphy and pottery analysis allows us to reconstruct the history of this relevant sector of the ancient urban landscape. In a first time, the sanctuary was sub divo and extra moenia with rituals organized all around votive stones. In a second phase two sacella were build up, probably at the same time of the city wall construction, making urban the sanctuary.
Despite this important discovery, a new procedure, agreed with all the subjects involved, allowed the building works to go on: roman ruins were disassembled and reassembled in a deeper level with a designed technique, enriching the modern construction with a musealization project and representing an example of compatibility between the needs of the modern city and the protection and valorization of its archaeological heritage. Thus, new precious data have been acquired, in particular about the foundation of Sena Gallica: the sacella were probably dedicated to Feronia and Fortuna goods, related to the Romanization and the water, and their orientation reflect the primary Roman urban plan.

Keywords: geophysical survey, salvage digs, urban walls, sanctuary area, Romanization