Key to Umbria: Montefalco

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The archeological museum of Montefalco is housed in the crypt of the ex-church of San Francesco.

Funerary Inscription (ca. 100 BC)

This inscription on the lid of a cinerary urn, which uses an Etruscan alphabet, was found recently in Vecciano.  It reads from right to left:

vi: ia: perunia

Vibio Perunia, the son of Ianto

(See also the page on Umbrian Inscriptions  after 295BC).

Inscription (1st century BC)

This fragment, which contains the last two lines of a funerary inscription, was moved to the museum from San Fortunato in ca. 1930.  It reads:



The lady Varia belonged to the gens Varius or Varianus, the family that gave its name to the locality of San Fortunato for a considerable period: for example:

  1. Duke Lupus of Spoleto issued diplomas from the nearby castrum, “curte nostra ad Varianum”(our court at Varianum) in 749 and 750; and

  2. a certain Andrea Andrea and his wife Casalina sold “petiam terre vincale in curtis castri Coronii, in loco qui dicitur Vagiano” (a piece of land in the court of the fortress of Coronii, in the locality called Vagiano) to Angolarlo, a judge at Coccorone, in 1204.

The significance of the word “ossura” is unclear: it could be a cognomen, but more probably relates to the funerary context (“os” is the Latin word for bone).

Caius Aufidius Agroecus (early imperial period ?)

This inscription from an unknown location reads:


C(aius) Aufidiu[s C(ai) l(ibertus)]/ Agroec[us]

mag(ister) Va[l(etudinis)]

P(---) O(---) [---?]

This freedman, who was also a a member of the municipal magistracy of the Magistri Valetudinis at Mevania, is known from another inscription (CIL XI 5040) from Mevania (Bevagna).

Relief (1st century AD)

This carved relief, which probably came from a column of a funerary monument, was discovered near the Convento del Padri Cappuccini (in the present cemetery, on the Spoleto road).  The fragmentary inscription (12th century) on the side indicates that it was later used as an altar table.

Funerary altar (1st century AD)

This was originally an outdoor funerary altar, with the ashes of the deceased inside.  The inscription dedicates it to the Manes Gods, or gods of the underworld.  Titus Aelius Primitivus dedicated it to his son, Titus Aelius Hospes, who was born in Mevania (Bevagna) and died when only 12 years old.  The name “Primitivus” suggests that the father was a freedman, and hence the first of a new family line.  The altar was used as a water stoup in San Bartolomeo before it was moved to the museum.

Hercules (late 1st century AD)

This marble statue may have come from the area of Sant’ Agostino, although this is uncertain.  It was restored in the 18th century but later buried in the garden of the convent, where it was rediscovered some decades later. 

The hero carries the skin of the Nemean lion, which he had killed as one of the twelve labours that he undertook in penance for murdering his children.  [Two worms hang from his hair].

Funerary altar (late 1st century AD)

This altar, which is similar to but less well preserved than the one above, found its way to San Fortunato before being moved here.   The steward Apulus dedicated it to the Manes Gods and to his friends Secia Apra and Sextus Caepias Hermetus.

Lion (1270)

This sculpture of a lion seizing a goat came from Palazzo Comunale.  The inscription records the rebuilding of the palace in 1270 under the Podestà, Bianciardi.

Monument to a Knight (late 14th century)

This pink marble monument came from the pavement of Sant’ Agostino.  The arms to the sides of the carved head of the deceased belonged to a Knight of Malta.

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