The faliscan city of Narce

The faliscan city of Narce

The Faliscan city within the Treja Valley

Narce, the ancient Faliscan city which lays in the midst of the Treja Valley Park, was once one of the main urban centres of this civilization.

Its origins are to be traced back to the year 1000 B.C, and at present it is considered one of the most relevant archaeological sites regarding the Faliscan people. Most of the findings discovered here are now conserved in both the museum of Villa Giulia in Rome and in the National Museum of the Agro Falisco in Civita Castellana.

The Faliscan civilization has left several traces of its passage in this area, deeply immersed in the lush vegetation of the valley. For instance, a great number of tombs, passages hollowed out in the red tuff rock, or remains of constructions and temples, all hints which give us a picture of that arcane environment in which this ancient civilization of the Lazio region lived.

Agropoli di Narce
Antiche mura di Narce
Calcata da Narce
Inizio del sentiero per Narce

The two Necropolis of the “Cavone” and “de la Petrina”

Laying along the hillside which overlooks the left bank of the Treja river, the necropolis was once crossed by an ancient city which lead to Falerii Veteres (today’s Civita Castellana). This necropolis actively functioned from the early decades of the 8th century B.C up until the third century B.C, and in time we have come to acquire a great number of relics which enlighten many aspects of the Faliscan funeral customs.

Among these findings there are small wells dug into tuff rock, both stone and wooden sarcophagi, and chamber tombs dating back to the latter period of activity in the necropolis.

 

The Sanctuary of Monte li Santi

The sanctuary was re-discovered in 1895 in the course of some everyday farming work. The following excavations brought back to light the remains of a monumental complex of great significance. It is still not clear to this day to whom this sanctuary was dedicated and which divinity was worshipped here, yet it is likely this might have been Demeter.

Several telling clues allow us to link the shrine to specific cults. The rich votive sediment in fact counts a number of terracotta statuettes representing ancient divinities, among which some have been recognized as presenting the features of both Demeter and Persephone.

The temple was therefore devoted to worshipping the goddess mother, fertility and births. Given the unusual position of the sanctuary, alongside the river, it is likely there might have been a further cult venerating the waters. The building of temples in the proximity of watercourses is a peculiar custom which recurs in the scheme of several Faliscan sanctuaries.

 

Are you seeking a direct contact with nature? Come and visit Narce and explore the Treja Valley Regional Park!

Where is Narce

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