MEGA. Megara Hyblaea

  • Section: Antiquity
  • Directors of the programme: H. Tréziny (CNRS, CCJ) and J.–Chr. Sourisseau (University of Aix-Marseille)


The 2017-2021 programme marks a resumption of field work in Megara Hyblaea after several years work on the publication of the ancient excavations including several major publications: Mégara Hyblaea 5  on the archaic city, published in 2004, Mégara Hyblaea 6. 1 et 6.2 on the southern Archaic necropolis (6.2 in 2017, 6.1 in prep), Mégara Hyblaea 7 on the Hellenistic city (2018).


The 2017-2021 programme builds on the results of the 2006 Western Archaic Gate excavation and geophysical surveys carried out between 2008 and 2013. The goal is to explore an area of the western section of the city, to determine if it is part of the original subdivision (around 700 BC) or constitutes a later extension in the course of the seventh century. We are also trying to understand how the North West sanctuary linked to the Neolithic village is integrated into the regular plan of the city.

Taking advantage of the absence of Hellenistic structures, a fairly good state of conservation, and images provided by geophysical surveys, the programme also includes the complete stratigraphic excavation of at least two Archaic houses, which will be a first on a site in which the houses have previously been excavated by trial tranches.

Another programme is expected to develop in the central depression of the Arenella, between the two northern and southern plateaus. It will focus on the study of a small necropolis of the early seventh century, which seems to indicate that this area was initially extramural, then on the housing structures that will be dated and interpreted.

Key words

Greek antiquity, colonization, Mediterranean, Sicily, town planning, topography, architecture, ceramics


Key statistics

  • 5 research teams
  • 60 hectares (area of the Archaic city)
  • 9 hectares (area of the Hellenistic city)
  • 68 years since the beginning of EFR excavations in 1949
  • 8 volumes in the Collection of the École française de Rome


In 2017

  • May 2017: Continuation of material studies (theses of Lou de Barbarin on Archaic ceramics, Alexis Varraz on architectural terracottas), research on quarries and stone construction, cataloguing architectural blocks from previous excavations.
  • September-October 2017: Three trial trenches open to the east of the Northwest sanctuary to verify the results of geophysical surveys, to locate the streets and insulas.

In 2018

  • 18 April-23 May 2018:  excavation campaign [campagne de fouille sur une surface d’environ 400 m2. Dégagement d’une maison dans sa totalité (lot 113W4), des pièce d’habitation de la maison adjacente et d’une rue. Fouille des pièces d’habitation de le maison 113W4 jusqu’à la roche mère.]
  • 26 September – 14 October 2018: material study [mission d’étude du mobilier de la fouille 2018. Travaux sur le mobilier des fouilles anciennes dans la zone de l’Arenella. Catalogue des marqueurs de tombes des nécropoles mégariennes.]

In 2019

  • 15 April-19 May 2019: excavation campaign [campagne de fouille sur une surface d’environ 400 m2. Fouille en profondeur de la cour de la maison 113W4 et de la rue E11, dans laquelle les niveaux néolithiques ont été atteints. Collaboration avec le CNR de Catania et le Musée Paolo Orsi de Syracuse pour la fouille de ces niveaux. Fouille partielle des pièces d’habitat de la maison 114E4. Découverte d’une troisième rue (E12) dans un nouveau sondage plus à l’ouest.]
  • 6 - 20 octobre 2019: material study [mission d’étude du mobilier de la fouille 2019. Mise à jour du SIG et de la base de données « SYSMEG ».]

Outputs expected results

Analysis and processing of the data

  • Setting up of a Geographic Information System
  • Setting up of an archaeological data recording system (SYSMEG) based on the SYSLAT system (with the collaboration of Michel Py)
  • Continuing cataloging of ancient collections (ceramics, architecture, metallics, statuary and coroplast).
  • Report of recent excavations in a new volume of the Megara series of the EFR's Collection.

Museography, public release

  • Contribution of the EFR to improve the presentation of the Megara rooms at the Paolo Orsi Museum of Syracuse [contribution à la réorganisation et à l’inventaire des collections en réserve.]
  • Contribution to the restoration of the information panels on the archeological site [inauguration de la nouvelle signalétique prévue en 2020].
  • Preparation of the rooms in the new Antiquarium Megara Hyblaea Museum
  • [Préparation d’une exposition au Musée archéologique de Lentini (printemps 2020) avec publication d’un catalogue.]

Page translated from French, 2020/04/01

European and national Programmes (ERC, ANR)

Laboratoire International Associé (LIA)