Via Roma, 36, Norcia, (Perugia)
Permanent Archaeological Exhibition – Roman Cryptoporticus of Porta Ascolana The Mostra Archeologica Permanente—Criptoportico Romano is housed in the building that encompasses the remnants of the ancient Roman Cryptoporticus at the entrance of Porta Ascolana, in the southern side of the town of Norcia. The rooms above ground, housing the collection, encompass the ground structure below of the Cryptoporticus, designed in the second half of the 1st century B.C. to assure a covered passageway into the Forum Area of the town. The exhibition, apart from representing an occasion to visit the Cryptoporticus, is part of the Museum Circuit of Norcia that includes the Civic and Diocesan Museum “La Castellina”, overlooking the main square of Norcia, and the Mills and “Le Marcite” Museum, which offers an exhaustive synthesis of the archaeological historical and artistic knowledge of the town of Norcia. The exhibition displays materials recovered in Campo Boario, on the occasion of the excavations in 2000. A village of log cabins dating 9th –8th century B.C. and a necropolis dating 6th –3rd century B.C.—one of the many that can be found in town—are characterized by burials for the inhumation of the upper levels of society. They are full of rich funerary goods with ceramic, iron and bronze furnishings. While a collection of marbles, including sepulchral steles, milestones and honorary slabs partially documents the Roman Nursia’s rich epigraphic heritage, two Neo-Attic stones sculpted with Dionysian scenes attest the local practice of pagan cults dedicated to Dionysus-alias-Bacchus. The edifice housing the collection encompasses the underground structure of the Cryptoporticus, which was designed in the second half of the 1st century B.C. to assure a covered passageway to the Forum Area of the town. Connected by a staircase to an upper portico, the Cryptoporticus was illuminated by a series of splayed windows positioned slightly over the vault.