Detailed sheets

Capuchin tomb

There are several  tomb types in the cemetery areas of Columbaris (figs. 1-2). Some going continuously from the IV to the VII century A.D., period during which the cemetery was used. Of the 157 tombs analysed, there were 9 capuchin burials and they took place during the area's entire use period.

Fig. 1 - Reconstruction of the funeral area (from Cornus I.1, p. 203, Tab. IV).
Fig. 2 - Map of the Columbaris-Cornus complex with indication of stages and sectors (drawing by L. SALADINO, M. C. SOMMA, from Cornus I.1, p. 200, tab. II).

The characteristic of Capuchin tombs (fig. 3) is that the deposition is inside a ditch dug in the bedrock, with a tiled roof forming the long and short sides. The deceased could rest on either the bare earth, with a simple  stone cushion under his/her head, or on a brick base.

Fig. 3 - Drawing of two capuchin tombs (from Cornus I.1, p. 215, fig. 84).

In the Christian necropolis of Columbaris, along with capuchin tombs you also mainly have tombs dug into the rock directly, enchytrismos, at times surmounted by brick mounds flanked by small tables for the refrigerium. Sarcophagi also appeared during the area's maximum expansion period. Between the end of the VI and the VII century A.D., especially in sector IV,2, you have burials in clay caskets or using stone pieces; some trapezoidal in shape, thus called anthropomorphic.


  • C. AMANTE SIMONI, I corredi, in C. AMANTE SIMONI, A. M. GIUNTELLA, L. PANI ERMINI, D. STIAFFINI, Ricerche di archeologia post-classica nella Sardegna centro-medievale, in Quaderni della Soprintendenza Archeologica per le Province di Cagliari e Oristano, II, 1987, pp. 83-86.
  • Cornus I.1 = A. M. GIUNTELLA, Cornus I.1. L'area cimiteriale orientale = Mediterraneo tardoantico e medievale. Scavi e ricerche, 13. 1, Oristano 1999, pp. 89-94, 95, 200, 203, 213, 216-217, 221.
  • A. M. GIUNTELLA, Brevi note sull'area cimiteriale orientale di Cornus (Cuglieri, Provincia di Oristano), in P. G. SPANU (a cura di), con la collaborazione di M. C. OPPO e A. BONINU, Insulae Christi. Il cristianesimo primitivo in Sardegna, Corsica e Baleari = Mediterraneo tardoantico e medievale. Scavi e ricerche 16, Oristano 2002, pp. 245-252.