ROME — Italian archaeologists have found the well-saved, multicolor patterned mosaic floors of an antique Roman villa in a vineyard that was last unearthed almost a century ago and then lost. The place, near Verona in Northern Italy, was identified to scientists through photos taken during an earlier archaeological operation, in 1922. But the villa was reburied at the moment and completely overlooked. But not to archeologists.
A photograph of the original excavation in 1922
The work started last year to find the mosaics. In the beginning, it was a little success or mistake, because the scientists who worked a century ago had not set the exact villa’s situation. But on May 18, archaeologists hit the dirt, opening piece of a mosaic that Mr. de Zuccato (the state archaeologist) remembered well from the century-old photos.
Although the name of the owner of the dwelling is not known, Mr. de Zuccato told that the quality of the mosaics shows that he had been well off, maybe a political leader or an ally of the Imperial surroundings. The general area of the villa is about 10,000 square feet.
Ancient Roman mosaic floor
Several mosaics from the villa were first by chance discovered in 1887 when labor was completed on the vineyard, next to the town of Negrar di Valpolicella recognized for its wine. At the time, the vineyard’s owner was free to benefit from the mosaics, and he sold them to city leaders in Verona. The place changed the owner and private archaeological operations in 1922 sponsored by the art experts discovered an area of around 3,000 square feet that opened other mosaics from at least five rooms and the remainders of painted walls. The excavations were photographed and noticed.
But the keeper of the house with the mosaic chose to rebury it and farming the area. He put a vineyard, and it was all forgotten.
Town farmer’s knowledge about the area’s and cultured processes saved the remembrance of the hidden collections. When a man from the town made an underground cellar near, Mr. de Zuccato worried that further build could accidentally put the mosaics in danger.
The mosaics were discovered in a space about 50 yards from where the archaeologists had started digging, in a vineyard belonging to two owners. “They have been great knowledge about the dig. We think of probably transferring it to a museum”, Mr. de Zuccato said.