Libarna was an ancient Roman city on the banks of the Scrivia. Located near a road artery and a railway junction, it still maintains its strategic position as it was during the Imperial age when it was on the Postumia road, an important commercial and traffic artery.
Libarna was originally a village founded by the Ligurian Dectunini and according to Livio it was one of the 15 villages that in 191 a.C. surrendered to Rome. The construction of the Via Postumia favored its growth and made it an important economic center of the Empire, until it became a Roman colony in the first century AD.
Following the barbarian invasions, the territory fell into decline and the city was finally abandoned in 452.
The rediscovery of the ancient city was accidental and took place in the Nineteenth century during the excavations for the construction of today's state road of the Giovi.
Libarna archaeological site
Walking through ruins the visitor see the complex topography dating from Roman period when the city was at its height. In fact archaeological findings testify that Libarna had a lot of trade and business activities in the early centuries of the Imperial Rome and that it decreased alongside the proggressive weakening of Via Postumia.
What's still visible today is just a small part of the ancient city that was very big at that time. At the sides of decumanus maximum there are remains of two quarters with houses dating back to the end of the I century BC and then adapted over the next centuries.
Domus in the upper corner of the quarter on the left of theatre entrance has a beautiful large mosaic floor representing Lycurgus myth.
Amphitheatre and theater are interesting elements as well, both built around the first century. First one could host 7000 viewers and 3800 the second one.
Archaeological relics of Libarna are collected in the Museum of Antiquities in Turin and Ligurian Archaeology Museum of Genova-Pegli. Other findings are on display at the museum area of the Serravalle Scrivia City Hall.
Imagine Copyright: By Davide Papalini - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0
From Tuesday to Friday : 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Week-end: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Closed on Monday
ARCHAOLOGICAL SITE CARD:
FOUNDATION: II BC
SUNSET: 452 AD
REDISCOVERY: XIX CENTURY
How to get to Libarna
From Serravalle Scrivia rail station (Torino-Genova line) head to the stop Seavalle Scrivia Fs (about 450 meters) and then take bus n. 58 or n. 60 destination Arquata. Finally get off at next stop Libarna. The site is about 550 mt. far from here.
From Arquata rail station (Milano-Genova line) take the bus n. 58 (destination Spinetta - Stab. Solvay) or the n. 60 (destination Tortona Movicentro) and then get off at the next stop of Libarna. The site is about 550 mt. far from here.
From Turin, Milan and Genova: motorways A7/A21/A26 ( gate Serravalle Scrivia)