Arslantepe 2024: 63 years of Sapienza's archaeological research in South-eastern Türkiye

On Wednesday, February 28, the Faculty of Arts and Humanities hosted the event "Arslantepe 2024: past, present and future of a new Unesco World Heritage Site. 63 years of Sapienza's archaeological research in southeastern Türkiye" to celebrate the results of more than 60 years of Sapienza research in the area

On Wednesday, February 28, Sapienza University celebrated Arslantepe, the archaeological site located in the Malatya plain, in the mountains of eastern Anatolia, about ten kilometres from the banks of the Euphrates, with a special event. A unique day that documented over sixty years of Sapienza's archaeological activity, thanks also to the collaboration with the Kültür Varlıkları ve Müzeler Genel Müdürlüğü of the Republic of Turkey, and celebrated the site now inscribed on the Unesco World Heritage List.

This celebration was even more heartfelt after the terrible earthquake that struck Türkiye last year, causing loss of life and damage throughout eastern Anatolia. The Sapienza scientific team worked with the authorities and the local community to rebuild the site, and within a short time Arslantepe was open to the public in all its beauty.

"Archaeology," says Rector Antonella Polimeni, "has always been a feather in the cap of our University, rewarded by international rankings and recognised as excellence throughout the world. In this respect, the excavation is an opportunity to reaffirm the value of culture as a tool for preserving and enhancing the historical and archaeological heritage of humanity, and as an engine for genuine international cooperation. We are therefore all proud to carry the name of Sapienza throughout the world through the Arslantepe Mission".

The event was inaugurated with a photo exhibition dedicated to the oldest public palace in the world, found in Arslantepe and turned into a museum in 2011. The exhibition is a collaboration between the Department of Ancient World Studies and the Department of Architecture and Design, and in particular the scientific contribution of Francesca Balossi Restelli, Marcella Frangipane, who preceded her and led the research in Arslantepe for 40 years, receiving numerous international awards, including one from the National Academy of Sciences (the first Italian woman to receive it), and lecturers Andrea Grimaldi and Filippo Lambertucci.

A travelling exhibition, physically and ideally linking the two countries, Italy and Türkiye, both of which have been involved for more than half a century in what has now become Türkiye's 19th UNESCO World Heritage Site. The photo gallery, exhibited in the main hall of the Arts and Humanities building, will then be set up in Istanbul and Ankara, before ending its journey in Malatya, where it will be permanently displayed in the Visitor Centre currently under construction at the Arslantepe site.

Tuesday, 20 February 2024

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