Since 2014, the British Archaeological Project at Grumentum has served as a field school for undergraduates in archaeology, classics, art history and anthropology. Over the course of the last seven years, we have hosted students from England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Germany, Spain, Italy, Australia, Hong Kong, the U.S.A. and Canada. In short, we are very much an international operation and welcome applicants from anywhere in the world. We are hopeful that with the arrival of the COVID-19 vaccines, circumstances will permit us to return to the field in 2021. Consequently, we are now accepting applications for the field school, which is scheduled to run from July 10th to July 31st, 2021.
Grumentum is in a fairly remote location in western Basilicata, and the easiest way to reach the site is by SITA bus directly from Rome. Consequently, we will depart as a group from Roma Tiburtina Bus Station at 15:00 on Saturday, July 10th, reaching Grumentum by around 19:30. The return trip to the capital on Saturday, July 31st should see us reach Tiburtina by noon. Because this bus is sometimes slightly delayed, we recommend that participants book their departing flights from Rome for no earlier than 17:00 on July 31st.
The typical working day starts at 8:00 and finishes around 17:30. We take a short break at 11:00 and a long lunch starting at 13:00. On weekends, we work Saturday mornings and finish around 13:00; students usually go to the pool, hike, or play sport during the afternoon. We organise visits to archaeological sites and museums located throughout southern Italy on Sundays, and have visited Pompeii and Herculaneum, Paestum, and Metapontum in recent years. We also try to include a trip to the beach on one weekend. For more on the Sunday trip schedule in 2021, see Weekend Trips below.
On site, students have the opportunity to learn the fundamentals of Mediterranean field archaeology, including excavation and recording techniques (identifying stratigraphic layers and deposits, drawing sections and plans, etc.), artefact processing and survey methods, as well as a range of digital skills. Our project is an entirely paperless operation: we use iPads in conjunction with a live database to catalogue data in the field, and employ aerial photography, photogrammetry, GIS and other technologies to record our excavations as they proceed. Though we still teach students traditional approaches to documenting the archaeological record, we also seek to provide them with the skills necessary to conduct fieldwork in the 21st century.
Lodging, Meals and Entertainment
Participants are housed in a primary school situated in the centre of Grumento Nova, a town located about 5 kilometres from the excavations. The school is positioned near the main church, Chiesa Madre di Sant'Antonio, with fantastic views over the Val d'Agri. Students sleep in male and female dorms, with showers, a kitchen and laundry facilities present onsite (sheets, pillows and pillowcases are not provided). A post office, pharmacy and ATM are located in close proximity, as are Grumento Nova's two main bars: Bar Mary and Bar Pappafico. The latter hosts karaoke, parties and various other events during the summer. The project provides breakfast, lunch and dinner 6 days a week (Monday--Saturday). Italian style breakfast is served at the school and we eat lunch, which typically consists of sandwiches, fruit and biscuits, on site. In the evenings, three-course dinners are prepared at the school by our excellent cook, Teresa de Stefano (vegetarian options available). We also occasionally have weekend meals at one of the local restaurants or the town's pizzeria.
During the 2021 field season, we are offering participants the opportunity to visit two of Italy's most famous archaeological sites, Pompeii and Paestum, with guided tours provided by the BAPG's directors, Dr. Taylor Lauritsen and Dr. Massimo Betello. Transport to and from the sites is included in the cost of tuition, but students will be responsible for entry fees (n.b. EU students can enter at a reduced rate or for free), as well as lunch and dinner, which will typically be consumed in local bars or restaurants. The trip to Paestum will be combined with an afternoon visit to the Lido Cinzia, a beach just a few minutes' walk from walls of the ancient town.
The tuition fee for the 2021 season is £1150/€1250/$1500. Given the circumstances surrounding the pandemic, we will not take up deposits this year, so that individuals can remain flexible regarding their participation up until the fee deadline (May 15th, 2021). Naturally, if the project is cancelled after this deadline, tuition fees will be refunded in full. The tuition fee covers the costs of all transportation in Italy, lodging and meals 6 days a week. Participants are responsible for arranging their own travel to/from Rome.
If you are interested in participating in the British Archaeological Project at Grumentum's 2021 field school, please fill out an application form, located here. The final deadline for submission is April 16th, 2021. Spaces tend to fill up pretty quickly, however, so we encourage early applications.