The Archaeological Museum of Montelupo Fiorentino offers an important contribution to the reconstruction of the history of settlement in this part of central-northern Tuscany.
It has its premises in the former ecclesiastical complex of San Quirico e Santa Lucia all'Ambrogiana. Prior to renovation, the building was subjected to an intensive excavation that brought to light the remains of a Roman necropolis; above these the early Christian church had then been built, which over the centuries underwent radical alterations, comprising the lengthening of the structure. For these reasons, the complex of Santa Lucia seemed the ideal site for the premises of the Archaeological Museum, and has itself become an integral part of the display itinerary.
With over 3,000 exhibits of varied provenance, comprising both material on display and that in the repositories, the Museum covers an extremely vast period, ranging from finds datable over 200,000 years ago to objects from the Late Mediaeval and Modern periods.
The display itinerary extends through five rooms which document the settlements of the territory over time. The first room is devoted to prehistory, and a map with five buttons enables the visitor to highlight the various sites chronologically and illuminates a small panel containing the materials linked to the territory.
In the second room are exhibits from the protostoric and Etruscan periods, including a kylix, or drinking cup, attributable to the so-called painter of Codro, active in Athens in the fifth century BC, and overpainted Etruscan pottery of the Socra group. The itinerary continues in the third room where the last Etruscan exhibits and those of the Roman and Early Mediaeval period are displayed. Among these, worthy of note are a series of amphorae originating from the Roman villa of Vergigno. In the same section of the display area is a decidedly singular object: this is an olifant recovered from the eighth-ninth century layers of the well-cistern of Montereggi.
Another showcase houses the bronze basin of "Karolus imperator", that is the Emperor Charlemagne, a rare exemplar featuring the medallion of the so-called "Hansa basins" which were produced at the beginning of the seventh century in the metal-working centres of the Baltic Sea. Displayed in room 4 are various exhibits found in two mediaeval wells: the Pozzo dei Lavatoi and that of San Biagio alla Castellina.
There are also remarkable graphic reconstructions of the original Castle of Montelupo and the river port of Puntazza, complete with mill. The visit then ends in room 5 which displays the finds from the "Tridente" excavation in the area of the Castle of Montelupo. These consist of weapons, household objects, metal working implements and a beautiful consecration chalice from the eighteenth century.
From Tuesday to Sunday 10 - 18 / Monday closed
Closed on: Easter, 15th August, Christmas, 1st January.
Open the Monday after Easter.
For further information:
Ph. +39 0571 54 15 47