Exploring the Archaeology of Regime Change

A five-year Research Project by the Universities of York, Rome Tor Vergata and Salento

Cessate d'uccidere i morti,

Non gridate più, non gridate

Se li volete ancora udire,

Se sperate di non perire.


Hanno l'impercettibile sussurro,

Non fanno più rumore

Del crescere dell'erba,

Lieta dove non passa l'uomo.

—Giuseppe Ungaretti (1888-1970)

The Project


The Departments of Archaeology at York and Rome 2 (Tor Vergata) began a joint research project in 2014 investigating the Byzantine-Arabic-Norman- Swabian transition (sixth to thirteenth centuries AD) in Sicily, with special focus on changes in social structure, agriculture and trade. Assemblages from previous excavations, Survey in four parts of the island and new investigations at Castronovo di Sicilia provide our data.

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The Team


The project is directed by Alessandra Molinari (Rome) and Martin Carver (York) with the collaboration of Girolamo Fiorentino (Salento) and the support of Stefano Vassallo of the Soprintendenza per i Beni Culturali e Ambientali di Palermo.

We are grateful to the Mayor, Commune and people of Castronovo for their warm and valued support.

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This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 693600

Contact us


You can get in touch via the following link.

If you require a certain person, please mention their name in your communication.

I want to participate


Sictransit welcomes interest from experienced and inexperienced volunteers willing to contribute hands-on participation in our field season. The work involves picking, shovelling, trowelling, survey, surface collection, pot washing and handling finds and a certificate of attendance is given.

The season takes place at Castronovo di Sicilia in September each year, and board (5 days a week) and lodging are provided. However the project is unable to meet the costs of your travel to and from Castronovo. The nearest airport is Palermo and the nearest train station is Cammerata/San Giovanni Gemini.

The 2018 season will run from 20 August to 30 September.

If you would like to participate please email , giving an outline of your interest and any previous experience and I'll put you on the waiting list. I'll make a selection from the list in February or March and notify you all.

Castronovo and Monte Cassar

Castronovo and Monte Cassar

Castronovo—the old town

Castronovo—the old town

On site at Casale San Pietro Int 5

On site at Casale San Pietro Int 5

Pot washing at Casale San Pietro

Pot washing at Casale San Pietro

Our mensa in the square

Our mensa in the square