Isernia Archaeological Museum

Museo archeologico di Isernia - S.Maria delle Monache

Isernia Archaeological Museum

Corso Marcelli, 48
Isernia (IS)

Phone / Fax: 0865 410500

The museum originated from a municipal collection of inscriptions and stone reliefs, found in the town and surrounding areas. It was initially housed in the atrium of Palazzo S. Francesco, the town hall, and was first put on public display in the Civic Library (located in a wing of the former Benedictine monastery of Santa Maria delle Monache) with the creation, in 1934, of a civic Antiquarium, under the direction of E. Apollonio.

The museum visit: Histories in stone

Piano Terra

Monuments and power: funerary architecture

The scenes depicted on funerary monuments recall the actions or deeds of the deceased during life.

Daily life in the hereafter: the necropolis of Quadrella

The necropolis is situated in the locality of Quadrella, along one of the main routes leading from Aesernia to Venafro and the upper course of the river Volturno, close to the confluence of the torrent Ravasecca with the river Cavaliere. Numerous funerary monuments, of the exedra and drum type, stand beside funerary enclosures and “a cappuccina” tombs. The cemetery was in use from the early imperial period until late antiquity.


Primo Pianotorna su

Life 700.000 years ago: the Paleolithic site of Isernia La Pineta

ricostruzione In 1982 the cover of the magazine “Nature” was dedicated to the prehistoric site of Isernia La Pineta. This discovery was remarkable for the extraordinary number of finds recovered but, above all, it provided significant supporting evidence for the theory that our continent was first populated in the remote past. The Paleolithic encampment of Isernia La Pineta, which may be seen on the site of the excavations themselves and in the museum, is one of the most complete examples of early human settlement in the history of Europe. The data obtained by the systematic excavation and interdisciplinary study of this site, a project begun in 1978, has led to the creation of a detailed reconstruction of the life and natural environment of Man, around 700,000 years ago. The significance of this settlement also lies with its importance for the study of the chronology of the Quaternary period in the Mediterranean Basin, and the significant contribution it has made to the reconstruction of the paleo-environment. Clear evidence of occupation in the area and the exploitation of environmental resources for food was recovered from the most important archaeo-surface found to date, also the richest in archaeological material. Among the large quantity of animal bones the most common were the remains of bison, followed by rhinoceros, hippopotamus, bear, elephant and deer (megaceros, red, fallow ). The evidence for the lithic industry, found in association with the faunal remains, was characterised by the presence of limestone and flint tools. The finds document numerous activities undertaken in the territory such as the collection of stone used for the production of tools, and hunting. The butchering of animal carcasses for consumption is attested by the marks left on the bones (such as intentional fractures or cut marks left by stone tools) and by the abundance of flints, the edges of which show unmistakable signs of having been used for cutting.