Punic archaeology. – The extreme lacunae with which the literary sources are presented, with the exception of Carthage, confers, in the current state of research, considerable documentary relevance to the archaeological data. The re-reading of the known data and the acquisition of the new ones make it possible to update and integrate the testimonies on the Phoenician-Punic presence in Tunisia. A tophet from the late period in Acholla, the current el-Alia, and a necropolis from the 4th century BC. C. in Tapso, today Ras Dimasse, is what remains of the Punic presence in ancient centers of the Bizacena. The modern center of Mahdia, whose ancient name is unknown, has revealed a very rich necropolis dating back to the end of the 5th century BC. Christ. Of little relevance (some well tombs with remains of sarcophagi) is the archaeological evidence of the Punic era in Leptis Minor, today’s Lamta. More consistent are the data of Hadrumetum, the current Sousse, in which a tophet was discoveredwhich dates back to the 6th century BC. C. and which gave stelae of considerable figurative and historical-religious interest. Remains of Punic walls have been identified at the base of the Kelibia fortress. Continuing along the coast of Cape Bon, beyond the center of Kerkuane, two important fortresses have recently been uncovered in the localities of Ras ed-Drek (here together with a temple) and Ras el-Fortas, dating back to the 5th-4th century. century a. Christ. Finally, some tombs of the late Punic age have been identified in the north of the Tunisia, in Hippo Acra, the name given by classical sources to the current Biserta. For Tunisia 2010, please check programingplease.com.
Roman archaeology. – Between 1947 and 1951 H. Caillemer and R. Chevallier, continuing the work of Ch. Saumagne, recognized three centuriations in today’s Tunisian territory, which flank but do not overlap each other, and which therefore they can be attributed to three operations, one after the other over time and with different orientations. Various terminal stones of a fourth centuriation have been found, while the traces on the ground are still only partially recognizable. In the same sphere of topographical exploration there are some interesting hypotheses of Roman restructuring of port works of the original Punic system, such as in Acholla and Tapso. Also noteworthy are some new proposals of interpretation put forward for the purpose, the reconstruction and historical setting of a series of honorary monuments in Carthage and in the Zama region. In Sufetula, in the Bizacena, interesting hydraulic engineering data are provided by fountains placed at the bottom of paved areas and most likely dating back to the 4th century AD. Christ. The study repurposed and supplemented by often conflicting opinions on schola iuvenum of Mactar drew attention to a kind of buildings of which no other examples had been reported in Africa so far, and which must not have been absent, the schola or college of a professional or religious nature. Lastly, the sculptures found in particular at Thinissut and Capo Kamart have been the subject of renewed studies, aimed at recovering indigenous Punicized cultural matrices.
Christian archaeology. – Recent investigations carried out above all in the southern Tunisia and in the region of Kelibia have provided interesting data on the architectural structures of paleo-Christian basilicas and on the layout of monumental cemeteries. The numerous mosaic panels found in cemeteries in the Cape Bon region, decorated with motifs and symbolic plant and animal figures, thanks to comparisons with the decorative syntax of other similar African tomb mosaics, propose the hypothesis of chronological and techniques, also relevant in the various African regions.