Perfectly preserved Roman mosaic floor discovered under Italian vineyard

28 May 2020, 17:37 | Updated: 28 May 2020, 18:00

Beautiful ancient Roman floor discovered beneath Italian township
Beautiful ancient Roman floor discovered beneath Italian township. Picture: Facebook / Comune di Negrar di Valpolicella

By Sian Hamer

The intricate mosaic floor, found beneath a vineyard in north east Italy, could date back to 200 AD.

An ancient Roman mosaic has been discovered underneath an Italian vineyard near Verona.

Architects found the treasure hidden under vines in the hills above the district Negrar di Valpolicella, in the north east of Italy.

The discovery comes almost a century after the remains of an ancient villa were found at the same site.

Archaeologists believe the intricate flooring, which was discovered “after countless decades of failed attempts”, could be part of the previously uncovered building.

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It's believed the perfectly preserved mosaic flooring could date back to 3rd century AD
It's believed the perfectly preserved mosaic flooring could date back to 3rd century AD. Picture: Facebook / Comune di Negrar di Valpolicella

Authorities from the area made the announcement on Facebook, saying “part of the flooring and foundations of the Roman Villa have been located north of the capital, discovered by scholars over a century ago”.

"Subsequently, the Superintendence will connect with the owners of the area and with the Municipality to identify the most suitable ways to make this archaeological treasure available and open and visible under our feet.

“The result will not come soon and significant resources will be needed. But it’s important, finally, to track the road.”

The ancient flooring was discovered by archaeologist during a planned dig
The ancient flooring was discovered by archaeologist during a planned dig. Picture: Facebook / Comune di Negrar di Valpolicella

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Excavation work on the site stopped in 1922, but was restarted last summer by a team from the Superintendent of Archaeology, Fine Arts and Landscape of Verona.

The dig was put on pause once again this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, but resumed recently. The exciting discovery was unearthed shortly after.

A tweet, posted by archaeologist Myko Clelland who came across the discovery online, has since gone viral.

He wrote: “Newly discovered just outside of Verona, what could be this year’s biggest discovery – an almost entirely intact Roman mosaic villa floor!”

Technicians are currently working on the safest way to excavate the intricate mosaic floor, which is believed to date back to the 3rd century AD.

Italy is currently moving to further ease its lockdown measures. From mid-June, concert halls and theatres will be allowed to reopen, with capacity limits and other social distancing measures in place.