A Roman fresco from an ancient official’s home was discovered at Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa, the capital of Roman Dacia (Hunedoara County), by a team of Romanian archaeologists, assisted in their work by student volunteers from the US, the United Kingdom, France and Romania. “We’ve made several important finds, including a unique one, in Sarmizegetusa: a fully-preserved fresco. In fact, we found the walls of a room from a 2nd century Roman official’s home, covered by the fresco, which was covered in turn by a coat of plaster and thus preserved. It was definitely an official’s home, as it was joined to the aqueduct system, not everyone could afford such luxury in those days,” the head of the archaeologists’ team, Dr. Ioan Piso, stated, quoted by Mediafax.
Archaeologists argue, however, that the digs proceed with difficulty, as they rely exclusively on volunteer work, and that they might have to be called off due to lack of funding. “The Culture Ministry allotted us RON 50,000 for this year.
We were relying on this money, as did the people in the village. We could have had 30 to 40 workers a day from the ranks of the villagers, but the funds were blocked because there are some problems with the norms for the application, with the minister’s signature, I don’t know what. As I said, the students are covering their own expenses. When we run out of money, we’ll all leave. This is how research work is done in Romania,” Piso argued. The volunteers will remain in Sarmizegetusa until August 6 and, before leaving, they will organize an Open Doors Day on the archaeological site, so tourists will be able to see the discovery before the fresco is moved to a museum.
Roman and medieval vestiges found in Cluj
The construction team building the new office of the Cluj County Board of Education (ISJ) discovered, at the beginning of the week, several vestiges dating from the Roman and medieval era. Works were halted, to preserve the heritage artefacts found. “A Roman wall and Roman ceramic fragments were discovered. At the same time, we found medieval pieces, as a church once stood on that site,” the head of the Cluj County Authority for Culture and National Heritage, Leonard Horvath, stated.