Sant’Omobono: an interim status quaestionis

Daniel Diffendale, Paolo Brocato, Nicola Terrenato, Andrea L Brock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


The church of Sant’Omobono sits above one of the highest human occupation sequences in the city of Rome. Some 3.5 m of sediment lie between the earliest known Bronze Age occupation lens and the base of the foundations of the early 6th c. B.C. temple, a further 13 m above which lies the floor of the present church, reconstructed in A.D. 1482. The site was sacred to the goddesses Fortuna and Mater Matuta for more than a millennium, before one of their temples was converted into a church of San Salvatore, rebuilt many times and eventually rededicated to Saints Anthony and Omobono. The archaeological remains were discovered by chance in 1936, when the dense neighborhood surrounding the church was demolished to make way for new Fascist infrastructure. The site was spared from further construction, and excavations continued sporadically through the latter half of the 20th c. This work was carried out by a diverse cast of archaeologists employing an equally diverse range of methodologies and field practices, though none of this work has been fully published. Since 2009, the Sant’Omobono Project, a collaboration between the University of Michigan, the Università della Calabria, and the Sovrintendenza Capitolina of the Comune di Roma, has continued this research with the goal of understanding and publishing whatever possible from the earlier excavations and bringing updated methodologies to bear on the site. While preparations for comprehensive publication are ongoing, the present article summarizes the main occupation and construction phases at the site as understood after 6 years of work by the project.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-42
JournalJournal of Roman Archaeology
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2016


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