Archaeological Site of Monte Vendevolo at Valnogaredo

Buso della Casara.

Archaeological Site of Monte Vendevolo at Valnogaredo

Archaeological Site of Monte Vendevolo at Valnogaredo: Buso della Casara, the most important work of water supply created by the Romans. Owing to geological reasons, the territory of the Euganean Hills does not allow the constitution of great water availability, but relies on a network of small sources. This is why the Romans harnessed the latter for water supply by building a system of aqueducts in order to connect sources to homes. A significant example is represented by the Buso della Casara, on the slopes of Mount Vendevolo, at Valnogaredo in Cinto Euganeo, built to supply water to the ancient city of Atheste (Este): more than 100 meters of tunnels and underground passages dug in rhyolite and easy to walk, being on a “human scale”.

These tunnels are delimited by two walls covered with large tiles to channel water coming from the springs. The creation of apposite hollows allowed the positioning of special lamps designed to light the hidden meanders and dark depths, during maintenance operations. The precise and meticulous water system designed by the Romans included a collection basin at the mouth of the tunnels called caput acquae. The duct pipe started from here and , after a distance of about 10 kilometers on a slight slope, it reached the aqueduct of Este. Even though in the following centuries these galleries were obstructed, plentiful water flowed anyhow to be used for washing clothes. Finally, the municipality of Cinto Euganeo, between 1970 and 1971, resolved to undertake digging works in order to remove all the hindering debris. Incidentally, a boat was found during the excavations: it was made from a poplar log, more than one meter long, having two holes in the bow and stern, which was apparently used as a means for transport of materials. Thanks to the advice of the locals, between 1999 and 2000, the Buso della Casara was subjected to maintenance work to improve its accessibility.

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