Archaeological Museum of Bologna

Museo Civico Archeologico
Via dell'Archiginnasio 2 - 40124 Bologna

Direzione e Uffici
Via de' Musei 8 – 40124 Bologna
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Places / Exhibition rooms / Room II - Prehistoric objects compared

In 1895, Giovanni Capellini, a prominent geologist, donated his collection of prehistoric artefacts to the city of Bologna. This consisted of over 7,000 objects hitherto conserved at the Istituto di Geologia (Institute of Geology), of which Capellini was then director. His collection of prehistoric materials comprised a group of items from the former Antico Museo di Storia Naturale (Natural History Museum), formed of the collections of Aldrovandi and his successors, and what Capellini had himself collected in his travels and at the conferences he attended. The material from the Capellini collection and some minor holdings acquired earlier by the Museo Archeologico di Bologna was reorganised by the then director, Edoardo Brizio, in this room. The result was a complex pre and early historic documentation of the main Italian and European regions, with a more limited investigation of Asia, Africa and America.

The objects were fixed to cardboard panels inscribed with the topographical details and name of the donor. This accorded perfectly with the study criteria of the late-19th century, based on comparative methods.

The current display has been greatly modified, as a deliberate decision was made to preserve a significant example of 19th-century museography. With this in mind, as a place of study, the museum had to offer the possibility of making comparisons between the various primitive cultures through an observation between materials by cultures that had vanished and others by existing cultures; this principle led to the creation of ethnographic sections in numerous archaeological museums of the 19th century.

Opening times
Monday 9 am - 6 pm
Tuesday CLOSED (except holidays)
Wednesday 9 am - 6 pm
Thursday 9 am - 6 pm
Friday 9 am - 6 pm
Saturday 10 am - 6.30 pm
Sunday 10 am-6.30 pm

closed: Tuesday (except holidays), New Year’s Day, 1st May, Christmas Day.


Exhibition rooms | Room II - Prehistoric objects compared