The hill site of Coste di Santa Febronia (Catania, Italy) includes the remains of an Early Bronze Age hut (ca. 2200-1450 BCE) that was found destroyed by a fire, leaving a sealed deposit with the artefacts in their last-use position. Domestic contexts with such architectural features and abundance of materials are rarely found in this phase in Sicily, and therefore this site is an ideal scenario for the reconstruction of the space organization in the Early Bronze Age.

This study aims at shedding light on the household organization by integrating a spatial study of the materials on a GIS platform, use-wear and organic residue analysis of ceramics materials. This interdisciplinary approach allowed the reconstruction of the living space inside the hut revealing in some cases a link between the location, the ceramic class and food consumed in it. In addition, the study posed some questions about the intended versus the actual use of some ceramic types of this phase in Sicily.

This study aims at setting the basis for and promote further work on prehistoric Sicily with an interdisciplinary perspective. This research started in 2010 and the MAT funds were crucial in allowing to complete and update the research pushing forward its final publication.

View of the rim, the external surface (at the top) and the internal surface (at the bottom) of a painted pedestal bowl. The arrows indicate the scratching marks on the interior surface; the rim is highly abraded. © Roberta Mentesana
Extracting the organic content from the ceramics at the Laboratory for Analysis for Cultural Heritage of the University of Salento (Lecce, Italy)

For further information please contact Dr Roberta Mentesana (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow, Department of History and Archaeology, University of Barcelona) at

The analyses were performed at the Laboratory for Analysis for Cultural Heritage of the University of Salento (Lecce, Italy) directed by Prof. G. De Benedetto (

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