A Crossroads of Civilizations: the Classics & Archaeology

Faculty-directed programs and digs led by local archaeologists in Sicily

Due to its location and its proximity to the shores of North Africa, Sicily has always been pivotal for exchanges in the Mediterranean, an island where civilizations would meet, flourish and often clash. Over the millennia, numerous civilizations have competed to inhabit the strategically located and fertile island, shaping the landscape and leaving behind their artistic and architectural traces and layering strata of religious artifacts.

Syracuse was founded 2700 years ago by settlers from Greece, who seized the island of Ortygia and created a city that grew to be one of the richest and most powerful in the ancient world. Successive civilizations to leave their mark include the Romans, Vandals and Ostrogoths, Byzantines and Muslims, Normans, and French and Spanish into the Early Modern period.

The Accent Center is located in the heart of Syracuse’s historical center, Ortygia, just steps from the Greek Temple to Athena. In the northwest of the city, Syracuse hosts a number of well-preserved Greek and Roman remains in an archaeological park, the most notable of which is the Greek theater, originally built to accommodate up to 15,000 spectators. The nearby Paolo Orsi Archaeological Museum hosts numerous artifacts and original excavation documentation from the area surrounding Syracuse as well as nearby Gela and Agrigento.

As a program location, Syracuse is within easy reach of various important archeological sites, including:

  • Greco-Roman Theater in Taormina
  • Necropolis of Pantalica
  • Valley of the Temples in Agrigento
  • Morgantina archaeological area
  • Roman Villa of Casale
  • Greek Temples in Segesta and Selinunte

Through an established relationship with the University of Catania, Accent can arrange for groups to visit or participate in archaeological digs. Program opportunities are tailored to learning goals, the students’ level of archaeological knowledge and experience, and the availability of active host sites. Accent has an established network of local archaeology faculty in Syracuse, allowing the development of programs not only directed by U.S. faculty, but also led by local experts with extensive experience teaching U.S. students.

To discuss your college or university’s programming objectives and begin designing your program, contact us at development@accentglobal.com.