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Royal Archeology Museum

Ex Regio Museo di Cagliari

Ex Regio Museo di Cagliari

The Former Royal Archaeology Museum, a neoclassical edifice, is located in the upper part of Cagliari, in the historical district of Castello in Piazza Indipendenza, nearby the monumental Pisan Tower of San Pancrazio, the Citadel of Museums, the Cathedral, the Royal Palace and the former Palazzo di Città (City Hall).

Previously site for the Mint and the Armory, the building was restructured between 1904 and 1906 and became the Royal Archaeology Museum following Dionigi Scanu’s design. The building’s façade is characterized by neoclassical architectural lines and is dominated by the impressive flight of stairs leading to the entrance which is decorated with tapered semi-columns.

The former Royal Museum was initially conceived to house the collection of the Cabinet of Archaeology and Natural History established by Viceroy Charles Felix in 1802, which was donated to the University of Cagliari in 1806. Collections continued to grow thanks to various donations of archaeological findings coming from the whole island.

The exhibition arrangement was devised by Antonio Taramelli, the well-known archaeologist and fellow member of the Accademia dei Lincei, who ran the Museum from 1908 to 1937. The original set-up dating to the beginning of the 20th century was preserved, notwithstanding new acquisitions of items following digging campaigns and archaeological discoveries.

At the end of the Eighties the museum collections were moved to the new premises in the Citadel of Museums, which was opened to the public in 1993, thus inaugurating the new National Archaeology Museum of Cagliari.

From that moment the former Royal Archaeology Museum abandoned its original function and became the site for the Superintendency for Archaeological Heritage equipped with departments, laboratories for the restoration of artworks and storage places.

Following the recent ministerial reorganization (Italian decree no. 171/2014), the Museum was put under the direction of the Polo Museale della Sardegna, the regional organisation charged with the enhancement of Sardinian cultural heritage.

Notwithstanding all the changes underwent by the Royal Archaeology Museum, local people and tourists cherish this place and request that it be opened to the public again.

The Royal Archaeology Museum represents the multifunctional focus of the museum offering system of Cagliari and the whole island. It is a virtual and real gateway to access Sardinian cultural heritage; an exhibition ground and at the same time a place where people can meet, confront each other and exchange opinions. But, above all, it is a place where the programs of the Polo Museale della Sardegna devoted to the enhancement of local cultural heritage will be highly supported and promoted. After almost 30 years a perfectly functional building has been opened again for public enjoyment.

Artbonus site collects all the works that citizens or companies can make in favor of public cultural heritage in Sardinia and in Italy. The project of the Royal Archeology Museum is also included.