National Museum of the Early Middle Ages

Golden earrrings with hard stones, 7th CE. From Castel Trosino

Inaugurated in 1967 in the Palazzo delle Scienze (Palace of Sciences) at the EUR with the aim of endowing the city of Rome with an archaeological museum of the Postclassical Era and fostering research on a strategic period for the study of the transformation of the Ancient World, the Museum exhibits materials dateable between the 4th and 14th centuries, coming mainly from Rome and Central Italy.

To late ancient Rome (4th - 6th c.) date back three imperial portraits, some votive and funeral epigraphs and a precious arbalest fibula (brooch) in gold with fretwork decoration.

Following are the testimonies of the Lombardic occupation in Umbria and the Marches (6th-7th c.) with the two most important necropoleis of Central Italy (Nocera Umbra and Castel Trosino) which constitute the nucleus of excellence with their funerary equipment of weapons, jewels, ivories, glassware and vessels in bronze and ceramic.

The succeeding Carolingian Age is illustrated by a considerable group of marble reliefs issuing from the architectonic decoration of the churches of Rome and Latium, heavily refurbished at the time of the Carolingian Renaissance (9th - 10th c.)

Belonging to the same period are the furnishings and the objects of use coming from two farming estates of papal foundation, the domuscultae of St. Cornelia and St. Rufina, in the Roman Campagna, for the provisioning of the City (close of the 8th - 10th c.) and with other functions until the full Middle Ages.

The visit ends with the Coptic collection, consisting of reliefs and textiles which offer a significant illustration of the artistic production of late ancient and early medieval Egypt (5th - 10th c.)

Within the Museum is also on display the extraordinary decoration in opus sectile (inlay of pieces of coloured marble) that adorned the stateroom of a monumental domus outside Porta Marina (Marine Gate) at Ostia.