The most interesting archeological discovery, which is still partly visible in the area of Colle di Val D'Elsa, isrepresented by Dometaia, a small group of farmhouses about 4 km south-east of the town. The first news of archeological finds in this area dates back to the second half of the last century, but unfortunately, the objects recovered during these digs are for the major part dispersed. Only a part of this collection was put together at a much later date by the National Archeological Museum of Siena, thanks to a donation.
In November 1972, the Tuscan Archeological Superintendent, Guglielmo Maetzke, with whom the Archeological Group of Colle had been in touch for some time, authorised the cleaning of certain tombs, already known of from the end of 1800, in the Etruscan necropolis at Dometaia. From 1972 to 1978 16 chamber tombs were localised and cleaned, but produced, as is predictable for tombs known of for a long period of time, very little in the way of material. Then in 1994, quite by chance, tomb number 17 came to light in which, even though it had been violated, fragments were discovered which enabled the reconstruction of some notable vases and a tubular gold earring with feline protome.
The study of the tomb has produced interesting data on Etruscan funereal architecture and also on the expanse of the necropolis, which goes from Buliciano to Poggio ai Colli, and is therefore much more extensive than was thought in the past, also with regard to its use, which is much more ancient than was believed up to now.
The disposition of the underground tombs along the new local road has suggested the hypothesis that it would have followed, even in ancient times, a very important main road which would have gone from Volterra, touching Dometaia, to connect with the large inhabited centre of Monteriggioni and then onward into the internal area of Etruria. The types of tomb are very varied. Until now five underground tombs of large dimensions have been recovered. Apart from number 3, which is of circular design with a double bench and signs of a dividing wall, the others are all of a complex design with a central vestibule around which are linked various chambers with benches. They represent the architecture of Archaic houses with several rooms and a ridged roof. This is the more aristocratic type of tomb used as a family tomb for several generations from the VI century BC, and bears witness to the existence of forms of aristocratic power in an area of great strategic importance. The tombs of quadrangular or circular design of modest dimensions belonged to the subordinate classes, and were the most common in the whole of the Volterra area from the end of the IV to the I century BC.
In 1998, the Council of Colle di Val D'Elsa, the Tuscan Archeological Superintendency and the Archeological Group of Colle drew up plans for an easily accessible archeological park which would enable visitors to know not only the necropolis, but also the beautiful Romanesque parish churches and the typical medieval hamlets of the area.
The first step, taken by the Archeological Group of Colle, was to restore and make ready the first four tombs. There is a collection of objects recovered after the cleaning of the first 16 tombs in a glass display case in the small room, number 7, on the first floor of the Museum. The pieces worthy of most interest are the two jars in 'bucchero' (a specific type of black pottery produced by the Etruscans) and some fragments of Attic red-figure vases.
In the small room next to this, number 8, there are objects reconstructed from fragments found in tomb number 17. Two
large painted skyphoi which are still being studied, and the earring already mentioned, are all well worth seeing.

Some photos

Place:First floor


Guest Book