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Grotticelle Necropolis

Overview

The Tomb of Archimedes

Entirely excavated in the rock of the Santa Venera quarry, in the rocky area north of the Neapolis Archaeological Park, the Grotticelle Necropolis is a true 'city of the dead', an important testimony to the ancient history of Syracuse.

The first burials date back to the Bronze Age, but it was with the Greeks, during the 3rd century BC, that the Necropolis reached its peak. After a period of neglect, it came back into use in the 1st century BC, when the Romans used it as a columbarium, with two tiers of niches for cinerary urns.

The Tomb of Archimedes is of particular interest to visitors. This is not actually the tomb of the famous inventor, but a tribute to him by the Roman general Marcellus, who even organised a proper funeral ceremony in his honour. The inside of the tomb is no longer open to visitors, but you can admire the external columns supporting the elegant tympanum. According to tradition, the structure was completed by a plaque engraved with a theorem of Archimedes was engraved, together with a depiction of a sphere inscribed in a cylinder.

Grotticelle Necropolis

96100 Siracusa SR, Italia

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