The craft plant – Via Cassino


The excavations carried out in via Cassino, in the northern outskirts of the modern city, in the early 80s of the last century, have brought to light a portion of a building used for the production of ceramic tableware. The plant was situated along the ancient road to Hasta (Asti), on the edge of the old urban area, and it is the only still visible witness of the manufacturing facilities in Aquae Statiellae. Such structures were situated on the edges of the urban fabric, in areas where it was easier to find spaces for the equipment required for the working of the furnaces, to avoid the pollution caused by the furnace emissions and to facilitate the disposal of waste and of residuals from ceramic firing process. The proximity of waterways and roads was then essential – the stream Medrio and the road to Asti, in our case – as they had to contribute to the security of the water supply (required for the processing of clay) and to the movement of goods.

The building found in Via Cassino consists of six rooms, distributed around a central courtyard, equipped with a well built with a stone curb, and overlooking the sidewalk of the Roman road with a portico section; they are accessed through a large marble threshold. The walls, of which only the foundations have been preserved, are made of river stones bound with mortar; the use of bricks is found only in the most northern compartment partitions that belong to a more recent phase. In fact, the building had to undergo several remakes and the area is frequented up to the medieval period, when the construction of a well partially destroys the walls of the northern sector.

The repetitiveness of the forms of the tableware discovered here, the presence of numerous ceramic fragments with clear deformations, scraps from the firing of ceramics and small pyramid-shaped lumps of clay (that served as spacers among the pots placed inside the furnace) together with the presence of wells, tanks and drainage channels connected with the processing cycle of clay are the elements that made it possible to identify in the building a plant for the production of ceramics.

The ceramic material found here also allowed to establish that it was a furnace specialized in the production of tableware for common use, of low quality: pans, pots, jars intended for food cooking and storage, jugs, glasses and cups for the table. The material has made it possible to date the activity of the furnace back to the period between the 1st and 2nd centuries AD.



Via Cassino, angolo via Fratelli Sutto


The site is only visible from the outside and not open to the public.


The site is only visible from the outside and not open to the public.