The Classics Department hosts two international excavation projects, one in Italy (Caere) and the other in Jordan (Humayma). Students can apply to participate in these excavations as volunteers (no credit) or for credit toward their degree. Information about the upcoming dig season and respective application deadlines are made available in the early to mid-fall term. Please see each of our programs below for details.
Humayma, ancient Hawara, was a small Nabataean settlement center founded in the first century BC in the spectacularly beautiful Hisma Desert of southern Jordan, halfway between Petra and Aqaba. The Romans built a fort here after converting the Nabataean Kingdom to their Provincia Arabia in AD 106, and the site continued to prosper in the Byzantine and Early Islamic periods, as evidenced by five churches and the manor house from which the Abbasid family plotted their revolt against the Umayyad Caliphate. The site has been under excavation since 1987, taken over by Dr. Barbara Reeves (Queen's University Classics Department) in 2008.
Archaeological Excavation of an Etruscan city in central Italy, directed by Dr. Fabio Colivicchi (Queen's University Classics Department). Cerveteri is a town on the West coast of Italy, 48 km North of Rome, which lies on the site of the Etruscan city of Cisra, called Caere by the Romans. Caere was one of the metropoleis of the ancient Mediterranean, a rich and powerful city which was an ally of Carthage and developed good relationships with its southern neighbors the Romans. The site is famous for its necropolis of rock-cut tombs imitating houses complete with carved furniture and decorations, recently listed among the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Many of the most famous Etruscan artworks, such as the Sarcophagus of the Spouses, were found in the tombs of Caere. While the cemetery has early attracted scholarly attention, the exploration of the city has begun much later. Though some sanctuaries are known, the general plan of the city is still largely unknown.