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Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Altamura

Altamura

The Museum

The Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Altamura was created with the intention of gathering in one location the many archaeological artefacts from the entire area, dating from Prehistoric times to the Middle Ages.
The exhibition attests to the settling of Alta Murgia and represents a summary of Peucetian civilisation and its inland expansion toward Basilicata and the Ionian coast.

The History

Museo Nazionale Archeologico di Altamura

A series of excavations, which began in the immediate post-World War II period and continued during the reconstruction years, unearthed part of the Peucetian settlement exactly in the area where the Museum stands today.
The Museum complex was officially opened in 1993, coinciding with a few important discoveries made in the 1990s, such as the Neanderthal specimen of the Altamura Man–found in a limestone cave in Lamalunga–and the Pontrelli cave palaeontological site, whose dinosaur footprints represent an additional tourist attraction.

The Building

Museo Nazionele Archeologico di Altamura - Interni

Museo Nazionele Archeologico di Altamura - Interni

Today, the Museum collection is housed in a late-1960s, two-story building next to the historic centre, along Altamura’s main road leading to nearby Santeramo.

The Collection

Opened in March 2017, the new exhibition follows an informative multimedia set-up.
On the first floor, the exhibition is dedicated to the civilisations that inhabited the Alta Murgia (Upper Murgia) region from pre- and protohistoric times to the Late Antiquity period, and consists of relics found in nearby settlements and necropolises.
The second floor is dedicated entirely to the European Palaeolithic, with specific focus on Central and Southern Italy.
Special prominence is given to “Preistoria del cibo. Alle origini del pane” (“Prehistory of food. The origins of bread”), an exhibition dedicated to reaffirming the farming heritage of the area and its close ties with the community.

  • Skeleton

    Skeleton

    The skeleton of the so-called “Altamura Man”, a specimen of Homo Neanderthalensis, found in October 1993 in the Lamalunga cave, in the rugged area of Alta Murgia.

  • Carved bone

    Carved bone

    Carved bone, probably a knife handle, which made up the possessions of the first man buried in a prominent position in a “grotticella” burial cave found in Casal Sabini, an area a few kilometres outside the centre of Altamura.

  • Ciborium lid

    Ciborium lid

    Apulian red-figure pottery ciborium lid by Darius Painter, with the image of the myth of Phaedra, one of the tomb artefacts excavated on via Vecchia Buoncammino, in Altamura's residential area, dated 340 BC.

  • Small gold cross-reliquary

    Small gold cross-reliquary

    Small gold cross-reliquary with glass paste gemstones and garnets, found in Altamura, in the Late Antiquity site of Belmonte; the artefact, clearly of Byzantine influence, attests to the pervasive cultural influence of Oriental styles in the 6th and 7th centuries.

  • Corinthian cast bronze helm

    Corinthian cast bronze helm

    Corinthian cast bronze helm of Greek origin, one of the rich artefacts found inside a tomb dating back to the 6th century BC, unearthed on via Trieste, in Altamura’s residential area.

  • Apulian red-figure pottery kantharos

    Apulian red-figure pottery kantharos

    The vessel is one of a semi-chamber tomb discovered in Altamura, on via Bainsizza. The bell-shaped vessel stands on a base in the shape of an ephebe head; depicted on one side is Hermes with his petasos and caduceus, while on the other side a female figure holds a casket and a mirror (330-320 BC).

Address

Via Santeramo, 88
70022 Altamura

Ownership

Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities

Tipology

No profit/donation museum, gallery

Info

Director: Elena Silvana Saponaro
+39 080 3146409
pm-pug.museoaltamura@beniculturali.it
Planimetry

More info

Info

Timetables

Monday: 8.30 – 19.30
Tueseday: 8.30 – 19.30
Wednesday: 8.30 – 19.30
Thursday: 8.30 – 19.30
Friday: 8.30 – 13.30
Saturday: 8.30 – 13.30
Sunday: 8.30 – 13.30

Ticket office closing: 30' before

Other info: Closing: last Sunday of the month.

Address

Via Santeramo, 88
70022 Altamura

How to get here

Altamura is connected with Bari central station via the Ferrovie Appulo Lucane railway service. From the railway station, proceed along Via XXIV Maggio for about 200 metres and continue on Viale Michele Fenice Chironna. After about 600 metres, turn right on Via Vecchia Buoncammino, then, 400 metres on, turn left on Via Mura Megalitiche. Continue for a further 500 metres, then turn right on Via Cassano delle Murge; after 500 metres turn left on Via Santeramo in Colle, which leads to the Museum.

Contacts

+39 080 3146409
pm-pug.museoaltamura@beniculturali.it

Full ticket

Free

Accessibility

Accessibility for the disabled is guaranteed

Animals

Allowed

Audio guides

Available

Guided tours

Guided tours are available for booking.