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Cetamura Wine Cellar

Retrieving the grape pips, 2012-2014

Well #1

Excavation of the two wells of Cetamura was carried out by the Italian archaeological cooperative Ichnos: Archeologia, Ambiente e Sperimentazione of Montelupo Fiorentino.  From the beginning they planned to retrieve plant remains through a process of flotation, running buckets of mud through a wet sieve.

From Well # 1 they found ca. 450 grape pips, distributed through Etruscan levels beginning in the late 4th/3rd century and going down to the 1st century BCE,  and continuing up to Roman levels of the later 1st century CE.  From Well # 2 came more than 4000 seeds, mostly dating to the Late Antique period of the 3rd/4th century CE.  The spectrum covered was a period of 600-700 years.  The seeds could be dated through the artifacts found associated with them, and some were selected for carbon 14 dating.

Bibl. F. Cini, L.  Cecchini and A. Violetti, “Excavation Methodology,” in Wells of Wonders, 2017, 36-42.

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