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nEU-Med day at Scarlino: our (Vetricella’s) first book is published

Origins of a new economic union (7th-12th centuries) edited by Giovanna Bianchi and Richard Hodges, Florence, Insegna del Giglio was published yesterday. It describes the preliminary results by the inter-disciplinary nEU-Med team. It can be retrieved on (open access) at:

We had hoped to coincide the publication with a public presentation of the excavations to the community of Scarlino, but Monday’s tempest left Vetricella under water. Even so, a packed audience attended a presentation by the nEU-Med team in the 12th-century village hall. The meeting was opened by the mayor of Scarlino, Marcello Stella, and closed by the Rector of Siena University, Francesco Frati.

Davide Susini & Prof Pierluigi Pieruccini with their augured cores

Vetricella’s prodigious quantities of finds attracted great interest, but there is growing excitement about the extraordinary augured sedimentary cores that tell the first environmental story of the Tyrrhenian littoral stretching back 8000 years. No less fascinating are the new reconstructions made by graduate student, Francesco Sala, showing Vetricella as a 9th-century royal toll station in a lagoon setting.

Francesco Sala describes how he is reconstructing Vetricella to Siena Rector Francesco Frati

With all this archaeological evidence to hand, architects Giuseppe Bartolini and Simonetta Fiamminghi, presented their concepts for masterplanning the Pecora valley and Vetricella as a centre. Walking and bicycle trails would connect the sea-shore by way of Vetricella to Massa Marittima. The first masterplan concept describes this as ‘il corridoio dei re’ (the king’s corridor) on the basis that Vetricella was a royal estate centre. Can we make this vision for Scarlino’s future happen? Well, creating a productive place to create work through local tourism certainly pleased the audience listening to Giuseppe Bartolini? With 400,000 visitors to Follonica’s beaches each year 7 kms away, we are optimistic.

Giuseppe Bartaloni describes his masterplan for Vetricella

nEU-Med day may have been blighted by the weather, but there was a real buzz created thanks to the efforts of a fantastic team.

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