9. Quando Bologna si chiamava Velzna: il museo Archeologico

I have definitely never been opposed to museums, but I will admit that when I find myself with a few hours to spare, I hardly ever think to find a good museum and pass those hours in learning. Last weekend, though, spare hours in mind and a bucket list to finish, I resolved to check out Bologna’s Archaeological Museum.

Like the Medieval museum, the Archaeological museum owes a large part of its collection to patrons of the city who brought the pieces back from their travels. In fact, the Egyptian collection in the basement of the building is pretty spectacular, and the air conditioning that accompanies it is most welcome on these hot summer days.

Taken from the wall of a tomb, this was one of the coolest panels I’ve seen.

I really like how they arrayed all of the mummy paraphernalia.

I had never seen a mummified crocodile before!

Walking upstairs, there’s a beautiful courtyard with a nice fountain, and then a big winding staircase takes you up to the second floor collection, composed entirely of pieces found here in Bologna. Though the Egyptian pieces were amazing, I think it was far more awesome to see the huge quantity of items found here in Bologna.

This statue of Neptune stands on the stairs. Isn’t it amazing?

Bologna’s Etruscan age.

An Etruscan gravesite.

Much of the collection is laid out in cases like this, since there are so many pieces they can’t possibly have them all at eye level.

A Celtic helmet discovered in my neighborhood.

From Bologna’s stone age.

These two horses were found under the Via Belle Arte, during construction.

A collection of pottery from the roman age.

This might be the happiest Roman bust I have ever seen. True, the sign did say it was probably from the “modern age,” but even by those standards he’s smiling.

A model for the head of Athena found originally in the Parthenon.

The broad range of things discovered around Bologna was incredible. Relics of the stone age, bronze age, iron age, etruscans, romans, greeks…these are generally things one does not find in the US. And of course one of the things I love most about Italy. When I had finally seen enough (and one of the people watching the rooms remarked that I lingered over things longer than most people in the heat), I went back downstairs to the courtyard to sit for a bit, and discovered another room!

This is the hall of plaster casts.

So, if you find yourself in Bologna with a few hours to spare (or are fascinated by arrowheads), be sure to see the Archaeological museum.


Non sono mai sicuramente stata contrario ai musei, ma devo ammettere che quando mi trovo con qualche ora di scorta, ho quasi mai pensato di trovare un buon museo e passare quelle ore di apprendimento. La scorsa fine settimana, però, con ore in riserve e un elenco secchio da finire, ho deciso di controllare il Museo Archeologico di Bologna.

Come il Museo Medievale, il museo archeologico deve attribuire un gran parte della sua collezione ai patroni della città che ha portato i pezzi dai loro viaggi. Infatti, la collezione egizia nel seminterrato del palazzo è piuttosto spettacolare, e l’aria condizionata che lo accompagna è benvenuto su queste calde giornate estive.

Camminare al piano di sopra, c’è un bel cortile con una bella fontana, e poi una grande scalinata tortuosa che si porta fino alla collezione del primo piano, composto interamente dai pezzi trovati qui a Bologna. Anche se i pezzi egizi erano incredibili, credo che fosse molto più impressionante vedere la quantità enorme di oggetti trovati qui a Bologna.

L’ampia gamma di cose scoperte in giro per Bologna è stato incredibile. Reliquie della età della pietra, all’età del bronzo, età del ferro, etruschi, romani, greci … queste sono cose che generalmente non si trovano negli Stati Uniti. E, naturalmente, una delle cose che amo di più per l’Italia. Quando ho finalmente visto abbastanza (e una delle persone che guardano le camere ha notato che ho indugiato sulle cose più lungo che la maggior parte delle persone in questo caldo), sono andata giù nel cortile a sedere per un po’, dove ho scoperto un’altra stanza!

Quindi, se vi trovate a Bologna con poche ore di risparmiare (o siete affascinati da punte di freccia), assicurarsi di vedere il museo Archeologico.


And now….I’m sure you were wondering how this ex-pat managed to spend the Fourth of July here in Bologna. As it turns out, despite the huge quantity of Americans I once knew in Bologna, not one was around to celebrate with me. So, I celebrated my Day of Independence…independently. I cracked open a cold one, made corn on the cob, and though there were no fireworks, I did find another nighttime show to see in the main square: Marilyn Monroe, Jack Lemmon, and Tony Curtis in “Some Like it Hot”. It was a good day.


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