Archaeologica area of Vižula

The Vižula peninsula contains remains of a large residential complex from the Antique period, a maritime villa with a pier, which was built in the period between the 1st and 6th centuries. Excavations and research were carried out between 1995 and 2010. It is a complex with several buildings that were built with regard for the terrain, in a number of terraces towards the hill, and partly carved into the original rock. According to the findings the complex was built in four phases (Augustus, Hadrian, Constantine and Early Medieval). Today, only the smaller part has been excavated and is visible, and some of its walls are higher than 2m, with well-preserved fragments of frescoes, stucco, mosaics and marble surfaces. The fragments of frescoes are visible in a variety of colours - from red and pink, to blue, yellow and black; the wall coverings are of the finest green and white polished marble; and the preserved floor mosaics are decorated with black and white ornaments, borders and multi-coloured tessera tiles. Starting from the lowest sea level, the following has been discovered: a peristyle corridor paved in a black and white mosaic, a swimming pool paved three times with the same type of mosaic, a preserved sewage drainage system with a paved drain and a stone grille, and a wide door with one step leading from the vestibule to the pool. The rooms by the sea to the west of the peristyle were paved with multi-coloured marble tiles in opus sectile technique. There is also a great entrance to the hall and a thermal area, which both belong to the first phase of construction, dating from between the 1st and 2nd centuries. The next terrace, on the second building level, contains a cistern on the vault, side rooms which are also tiled, and a large water tank. On the third terrace there is a hypocaust heating system with ceramic inlet canals and lead drain pipes. The floors of the three rooms on the third terrace were covered with a particular polychrome mosaic in a geometric decorative motif shaped like a chessboard, and characteristic of the 4th century. The following rooms also contain floor mosaics in various geometric decorative motifs. This third terrace is, of all of them, from most recent Antique times, from the time of Emperor Constantine (there is a coin, built into the mosaic floor, found from his time). There are three more floor mosaics, stylistically belonging to the same workshop. Two steps lead to the rooms on the fourth terrace. The purpose of these rooms has not been ascertained. This was a period of barbarian invasions in Istria, which reflected on the life and function of the entire residential complex. On that level the remains of a fireplace were found, made from earlier building materials, which probably dates from that time, during the 6th and 7th centuries, when each room was used by one family group.

Site Details

CODE HR-18/PeViž
LOCATION Vižula peninsula, Medulin
PERIOD 1st–6th century A.D.
PERIOD OF EXCAVATION 1995 - 2010
OWNERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT Municipality of Medulin
PUBLIC ACCESS free
CREATED BY Tina Širec Džodan