The Museum is hosted in the imposing neoclassical architecture of the XVIII century Hospital of the Infirm (1771/1784), realized by Antonio Foschini and Gaetano Genta. It is one of the most important and monumental buildings of the historical city center of Comacchio. Archaeological finds coming from the territory, ranging from the proto-history period to the Middle Ages, are exhibited. Through the exhibition of almost two-thousand finds, and thanks to reconstructions and guide apparatuses, the museum narrates the history of the ancient Po delta that, with its numerous navigable canals and land ways, over the centuries was an important trade junction that connected the civilizations of the Mediterranean world with continental Europe.
The museum is divided into themed and chronological sections.
The section dedicated to the Ancient Delta – Environment and Territory - covers the environment changes of the delta over the millennia, from the formation of the Po plain up to today, through alternating cycles of glaciation and rising sea level, which created different environments such as tundras, forests, lagoons, up to human settlements.
The section of the final years of the Bronze Age and early Iron Age (Before Spina) exhibits the most ancient archaeological finds of the area that evidence contemporary human settlements in Frattesina of Fratta Polesine (Rovigo), well-known trade center between the Mediterranean and continental Europe in that period, which covered that role before Adria and Spina on the Adriatic Sea.
The section dedicated to Spina crossroads of the ancient world is focused on the story of the Etruscan city of Spina, Etruscan port and outpost for trade towards the Eastern Mediterranean. Spina’s relations with Athens and the Greek civilization, with Etruscan, Veneto, and Celtic people, and its “light” lagoon city structure on the river are illustrated in it.
The section called Territory without a City presents a delta area included in the orbit of Ravenna, seat of the imperial Adriatic fleet. A land of extensive agriculture and industrial productions of brick and salt, fish farming and fundamental connection center, by water and land ways, between Rome and northern Italy, the Adriatic, and Balkan regions. The delta evidences its trade vocation through the exceptional finding, in 1981 in Comacchio (Valle Ponti), of a Roman ship with its entire cargo, dating back to the period of Augustus and the globalized world of Rome.
The section dedicated to Comacchio, emporium on the sand narrates how, in a period in which the Roman cities declined and in some cases disappeared, a series of settlements along the northern Adriatic coast emerged, almost out of nowhere, in areas protected by rivers and lagoons (such as Comacchio and Venice), in a land contended by Goths, Byzantines, and Longobards. Therefore, Comacchio emerged in times in which the Mediterranean trade ways, those along the Po River, were still active and efficient.
Guided visits (1h)
Educational activities (1h)
Guided tours in Comacchio’s historic center (1,5h)
From November to February
From Tuesday to Saturday, opening hours 9.30 am - 1.00 pm / 2.30 pm - 6.00 pm
Sunday and holidays, open all day 10.00 am - 5.00 pm
From March to June - September and October
From Tuesday to Sunday, opening hours 9.30 am - 1.00 pm / 3.00 pm - 6.30 pm
July and August
Open everyday 9.30 am - 1.00 pm / 3.00 pm - 6.30 pm
Museo Delta Antico
Via Agatopisto 2, Comacchio