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Documenting the past with digital technologies

In September 2013 The Cyprus Institute (STARC: Dr S. Hermon, G. Iannone, M. Faka and I. Atzeni Erasmus student), has started a collaboration within the framework of the 3D Icons project, with Prof. A. De Palmas Professor of European Protohistory at university of Sassari (Italy), in cooperation with: Dr. G. Demartis Mayor, G. Piredda Vice Mayor Municipal administration of Paulilatino and the Cooperative Archeotour., in order to digitally document, with new technologies, part of the archaeological complex of Santa Cristina di-OR-Paulilatino, Sardinia (Italy).

The archaeological site of Santa Cristina is situated ca. 4 km south of the village of Paulilatino; it is named after the small rural church of Santa Cristina, where villagers annually commemorate the saint.

The archaeological complex, dating back ca. 3,000 years ago, consists of the well temple sanctuary itself and adjacent rounded structures, interpreted as spaces for rituals related to the well (a rounded “meeting place” hut, circular structures, etc.). The well itself has a characteristic keyhole shape and is surrounded by an oval enclosure. In the Centre there is a monumental stairway with 25 steps, which leads down into the well covered by a nearly 7 metre high tholos roof with a central hole.

The perfect smoothness and precise cut of stones make the Santa Cristina well an excellent example of the technical perfection achieved during that period.

The field survey and registration of monuments, their shape and orientation, was made with a terrestrial laser scanner (Surphaser 25hsx) and a Total Station (Leica TS11). First results enable researchers to present a detailed plan of the site, orientation of structures and inter-relations between buildings. Following steps will be an analysis of the construction techniques and hypothesis on the shape of the upper, covering structure.


Figure 1. Aerial overview of the site


Figure 2. 3D model of the sacred well complex, view towards the entrance to the well




Figure 3. 3D model of the sacred well complex, upper view








Figure 4. X-Ray simulated view of the interior of the well, showing the steps leading to the well and the tholos built above it

Figure 5. 3D schematic model of the sacred well complex, showing the steps leading to the well