Two mediaeval pilgrim burials found below popular central Rome street

During a utility work on the Via del Governo Vecchio workers accidentally found two mediaeval burials

Archaeology (representational picture) Pixabay

Workers unearthed medieval era tombs accidentally when they were digging there for utility work on the Via del Governo Vecchio in central Rome, and the city's archaeological authorities said the discovery was unexpected. They found one of the burials was partially destroyed by gas and sewage pipes.

The damaged tomb contained two human skeletons. One of them belonged to a woman aged between 25 and 30 who was found holding a shell in her hand, while the other skeleton belonged to a man aged between 30 and 40 years. From the first tomb, a bronze coin dating from the late 11th and 12th centuries and other fragments of shells were found.

The second tomb was discovered in a partially damaged condition due to the modern-day utility works. This burial comprises a cemetery area with dividing sections against a brick wall whose graves appear to be from the Medieval times. The experts mentioned that shells found along the burial were used as necklaces traditionally worn by the pilgrims in the Middle Ages. These findings also made the experts believe that the find was a cemetery for pilgrims, located at the ancient Via Papalis pilgrimage route to St Peter's.

It was also revealed that the chambers of the tomb belonged to the mediaeval Church of S. Cecilia at Monte Giordano, which was demolished in the 17th century to make space for Oratorio dei Filippini erected between 1637 and 1650 under the supervision of architect Francesco Borromini. Just off the Piazza Navona, the street of Via Del Governo Vecchio is a very famous destination for explorers as Renaissance architect and painter Donato Bramante and San Filippo Neri used to live there. Piazza Pasquino is also very famous for the "talking sculptures" which had satirical messages written on them by the locals of different other centuries.

Related topics : Archaeology