Bronze steelyard (Dudurri)

A bronze steelyard was found in Dudurri in the Dorgali area (fig. 1).

Fig. 1 - Bronze steelyard from Dudurri-Dorgali (from

This consists of a small lever scale from the Roman-Imperial Age, now on display at the Archaeological Museum of Dorgali. It dates back to the II-VI/VII centuries A.D. Finely crafted, it is considered one of the best preserved specimens found in Sardinia.

The steelyard is a type of scale consisting of a single arm and a single plate (fig. 2). The capacity of the Roman steelyard was probably equal to that of the modern ones (kg. 10-150).

Fig. 2 - Roman steelyard at the Antiquarium Ostiense (from

Unfortunately, similar finds are not very common in Sardinia: among the few known examples, it is worth mentioning the bronze steelyard with its rod, hook, suspension chain and weights found out of context in Baddeunna, in the territory of Pattada (fig. 3), the small bronze steelyard with suspension hook and chains for the plate, of which only a few elements remain (fig. 4), which was found in a chamber tomb in the eastern necropolis of Balai or of the Scoglio Lungo (in use from the I to the VI-VII centuries A.D.) of Turris Libissonis (the current Porto Torres), and a bronze plate, part of a Roman steelyard found in the territory of Viddalba.

Fig. 3 - Bronze steelyard found in Baddeunna-Pattada (from BONINU 1986, fig. 216, p. 151).
Fig. 4 - Bronze steelyard from the necropolis of Scoglio Lungo of Turris Libissonis (from MANCONI 1986, fig. 375, p. 282).


  • BONINU A., La Sardegna in Età Romana, in AA.VV., Il museo Sanna in Sassari, p. 145, p.151.
  • MANCONI F., L’Antiquarium Turritano, in AA.VV., Il museo Sanna in Sassari, p. 282.
  • PITZALIS G., Necropoli e centri rurali della Sardegna romana nella Bassa Valle del Coghinas, in L'Africa romana, Atti del XII Convegno di Studio, 2, Sassari 1998, p. 749.