Ancient Studies

As a centre of the Mediterranean world through the millennia, Italy is replete with the extraordinary remains of remarkable civilizations. Archaeology students at LdM discover this rich history through a combination of academic instruction and experimental methods. A special partnership with CAMNES (Center for Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Studies) ensures that LdM’s students get hands-on experience through on-site visits and field work. Excavation and learning will be achieved through an innovative dynamic and itinerant approach thanks to CAMNES scientific supervision of LdM’s Archaeology and Classical Studies Department.

Students explore myriad aspects of the Etruscan, Greek and Roman achievement in Italy, and courses place considerable emphasis on fieldwork, archaeological theory, methods and research, providing a well-rounded and professional approach to the subject. In Florence, students in LdM’s archaeology courses participate in the storing, conserving, photographing, interpreting and archiving of the discoveries from Tuscania. Academic coursework is complemented by on-site visits to renowned Etruscan and Roman sites like Cerveteri, Vulci, Fiesole, or the Roman Forum.


In Fall 2010, Lorenzo de’ Medici began a distinctive collaboration with the Center for Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Studies (CAMNES). The chief goal of this study center is to bridge international research and education in archaeology/ancient studies in order to promote the discovery of our roots and a better understanding of our time, now more than ever. CAMNES activities include professional and interdisciplinary education, conferences, symposia, publications, exhibits and public archaeology initiatives. The CAMNES scientific committee comprises outstanding scholars and researchers (both established and emerging archaeologists and academics) whose experience addresses key areas of interest about the ancient past of the Mediterranean and the Near East. International in character, scholarly conferences are often partnered with major research bodies, and acts and papers have been published by noted publishers in the field. For example, CAMNES, together with the University of Florence and the support of LdM, organized the 16th Symposium on Mediterranean Archaeology (BAR Archaeopress, Oxford 2013), as well as an important workshop on the Archaeology of Florence (Archaeopress Archaeology, Oxford 2015). In collaboration with the University of Siena, CAMNES also launched the first Roundtable on the Middle Paleolithic in Italy, in 2012.

In August 2015, CAMNES, with the Italian Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the University of Florence, organized the 11th International Congress of Egyptologists with the participation of over 700 delegates from all around the world. CAMNES continues to develop archaeological research projects in Italy (Tuscania, Accesa) and in other countries (Turkey and Iraq). CAMNES and LdM have also established Field Schools where students learn and actively participate in a professional archeological setting. Excavations are carried out at the Etruscan necropolis in Tuscania (Viterbo), which has recently become an Archaeological Park open to the public. CAMNES oversees the the expanding department of Ancient Studies at all LdM sites, and coordinates the development of new study programs and courses. This collaboration shows the commitment of the Istituto Lorenzo de’ Medici to the understanding and enhancement of our past through archaeological heritage.

Course Listing

Digging Up the Past: Introduction to Archaeology
Latin and Us: Uncovering the Hidden Meaning of English Words
Archaeology Workshop
Ancient Rome
Florentia: The Ancient Roots of Florence
Greek and Roman Mythology
The “Mysterious” People of Ancient Italy: In Search of the Etruscans
War in the Greek and Roman Worlds
The Age of Barbarians: The “Fall” of the Roman Empire and the Birth of Medieval Europe
Beyond the Bible: Peoples and Cultures in the Biblical World
Ancient Egypt
Co(ok)quinarius: Ancient Sources of Italian Cuisine
Nectar of the Gods: Wine in Ancient Italy
Magic, Divination, and Ghosts in the Ancient World
Archaeology of Death
The Age of Heroes: The Iliad, the Odyssey, the Aeneid, and the Origins of Western Literature
Magna Graecia: Ancient Greeks in Italy

Please note that this is a selection of LdM courses. Consult the current LdM Course Schedules  for offerings by site and session, and the LdM Academic Catalog for a complete list of courses, descriptions, and prerequisites.