Rediscovering the heroes - Mont'e Prama

Discovered by chance in March 1974,
the archaeological site of Mont’e Prama underwent several excavation campaigns
between 1975 and 1979 and, in more recent times, between 2014 and 2017.

General view of Bedini’s excavation of 1975

Long and painstaking restoration was carried out at the Cultural Heritage Restoration Centre of Li Punti at Sassari and,
later, at the workshop in Cabras at the time of the new excavations in 2014. The teams were able to study
and reassemble an important part of the almost 10,000 stone fragments found during the digging campaigns.
They put together 27 statues of the Mont’e Prama heroes, a warrior’s shield, 16 models of nuraghes and 9 betyls.

Roberto Nardi, director of the Archaeological Conservation Centre (ACC), during restoration works.

In November 2011, a first temporary show entitled La pietra e gli eroi (Stone and heroes) was set up in the centre of Li Punti, displaying for the first time since their discovery the statues and other sculptures of Mont’e Prama restored up to that point, together with a number of other fragments and finds.

From March 2014, the collection of Mont’e Prama sculptures has been on show in the exhibition Mont’e Prama 1974-2014 set up in parallel at the National Archaeological Museum in Cagliari and the Civic Museum ‘Giovanni Marongiu’ in Cabras.
More recent findings, promptly restored,
are also put on show at the Cabras venue.

The two statues of boxers found in 2014. That on the left is still to be restored.

Currently, fieldwork focuses on extending the excavation area to clarify the original layout of the site and the sequence of events over the long period from original set up of the necropolis to the formation of the sculpture complex, right up to its destruction.