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Hypogeum of the Volumni and Necropolis of the Palazzone

Hypogeum of the Volumni and Necropolis of the Palazzone

The Hypogeum of the Volumni, dug deep into the ground and accessed by a steep staircase, re-proposes the architectural structure of a Roman house. The name of the Velimna family (Volumni in Latin) can be deduced from the inscriptions placed on the cinerary urns and from the one on the jamb of the access door, which recalls the Velimna brothers, founders of the tomb. Articulated in several rooms, with the ceiling of the central one that imitates a gabled timber roof and others in coffered with carved Medusa heads, the tomb houses magnificent cinerary urns with Medusa heads; that of Arunte, very remarkable, consists of a bed adorned with drapes, on which the deceased rests in the typical recumbent position. On the sides of the base, two winged demons, with a youthful appearance, watch over the access door to Hades depicted in the painting. The dating of the sepulcher is located in the second half of the second century. BC The door is made up of architrave, jambs and closing slab in travertine. The vertical inscription in Etruscan, relating to the construction of the tomb, runs on three lines on the right jamb. Beyond the door, on a rectangular atrium with the ceiling imitating the double sloping wooden roof, with a central columen and orthogonal beams, there are two rooms, cubicle, on each side, at the bottom the tablinum, and two wings ending in two rooms, with ceilings decorated with geometric coffers with Gorgonic and human protomes. The tympanums are decorated with scenes referable to the afterlife. The tablinum is occupied by seven inscribed cinerary urns, six Etruscan, of excellent workmanship, in stuccoed travertine, one Roman in marble. The most notable is the one leaning against the back wall of Arnth Velimnas Aules, represented half-lying on the kline, in the center of which the door of Hades is painted, flanked by two Lasas. On the right there are four travertine urns with the deceased semi-recumbent and the head of Medusa in the façade. The other members of the family belong to the grandfather, the father and the brothers; on the left is the daughter Veilia, depicted at a banquet, seated. The marble urn belonging to the last person buried in the tomb represents a Roman building, decorated with festoons in relief, dating back to the 1st century. A.D; its name is engraved in both Etruscan and Latin. The dating of the tomb, placed in the second half of the second century, is much discussed. BC, but which, also following the discovery of the tomb of the Cai-Cutu in Monteluce, an attempt is made to raise it in the third century. BC In the modern vestibule, numerous cinerary urns from the surrounding Palazzone necropolis of the Hellenistic age are collected.

The necropolis, excavated in the nineteenth century and, subsequently, from 1963 onwards, is made up of nearly two hundred tombs. The sepulchres, dug into the natural ground, are chambered, preceded by a small dromos, and are mostly related to the Hellenistic age, but in part they also refer to the Archaic age and therefore of exceptional interest for the history of the city of Perugia. in antiquity.

The necropolis, inserted in the archaeological park, is open to the public and can be visited following paths accompanied by didactic panels. Also within the necropolis is the recently set up antiquarium, with thematic exhibitions focused on aspects of daily life.

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Via Assisana, 53
06126 Ponte San Giovanni

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