Download the map of the park.
 
 
ROCK 1 BEDOLINA
The Bedolina area is no doubt marked by the wide spread “topographic” compositions, whose best known example is right on R. 1 — the so-called “Bedolina Map”. It consists of particularly convoluted figures, generally composed by rectangles or squares filled with precise rows of cup–marks and linked together by lines so that they form extended and highly interconnected “super–figures”. Such engravings were produced in slightly simpler types as early as the Ancient Copper Age (or even probably during the Late Neolithic) and were carved in expanded and much complex form during the Iron Age. They are interpreted as topographic representations of the territory and are usually compared with similar figures spread in the Alpine region, especially the Mount Bego (Maritime Alps, France) and the Haute Maurienne (Aussois, France). The different elements of the compositions may show the various destination of every elements (dwelling areas, farms, rangelands, paths and other man–made structures), while the 3D surface itself may had been chosen because it resemble some specific parts of the surrounding territory. The purpose of such a depiction would be to turn into sacred elements the “domestic” space settled by man, that is the Nature which brings fruits and is subdued to the farmer, opposite to the “savage” and out of control Nature of wild animals and hunters. The proximity with ploughing scenes, which is common and widespread during Copper Age on Mount Bego and Valcamonica, is quite meaningful and may confirm the identification of the geometrical figures with land portions and with the representation of country landscapes. […]
In addition to the geometric composition R. 1 is carved as well with some sporadic armed human being, a few animals and some building representations on its lowest part, but especially with the only Camunian rose to be found on the more than 160 engraved rocks included in the Park. As already said this mysterious symbol, which was chosen as well as the symbol of Lombardy Region, has become one of the best–known Valcamonica petroglyph, especially since 1979, when the latter became the first Italian site to be added to the unesco World Heritage List (site n. 94: “Valcamonica Rock Art”). However, the meaning of the Camunian rose is still hidden and mysterious. Linked to the ancient solar symbol of the swastika the symmetric rose at Bedolina may be explained as a local development of this sign dating back to the end of the Iron Age (3rd–1st centuries BC).
(Cited from Alberto Marretta in Marretta and Cittadini Valcamonica rock art parks. Guide to visiting routes, Edizioni del Centro, 2011, pp. 154-156)
 
ROCK 1 BEDOLINA / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, author Alberto Marretta (2004).

ROCK 1 BEDOLINA / SURVEY
Historical archive CCSP, 1970. © CCSP 2012, author Beltràn Lloris Miguel.

 
 
 
ROCK 12 SERADINA I
The wide surface is one of the most important and best–known in the whole Valcamonica rock art and is marked by a combination of themes which makes it unique in the context of the local Iron Age. The central part of the rock is occupied by the imposing scene of a procession of spear–holding horsemen hunting deer and followed by dogs. The hounds are unusually represented here with their jaws wide open and their tongue clearly visible. The hunting horseman theme is not uncommon in the rock art areas of the western valley side of Middle Valcamonica and may probably underline the aristocratic status of the carved figures. The latter in fact showed their high social status and wealth right through the possession of a horse, which constituted a rare and precious good in prehistoric times. The deer with “solar” antlers are very different from the ones that can be found, for example, on the great R. 1 of Naquane. They are spread only in a few other rocks of the Corno di Seradina and recall some ancient themes already present on the monuments of the very close Massi di Cemmo National Park. In the same way the six ploughing scenes discovered on this rock can be interpreted as an Iron Age revival of a theme already present two thousand years before. The agriculture scenes are marked in this case by a couple of yoked horses replacing the previous oxen, led almost always by a human being holding a hoe and sometimes followed by erotic scenes. The symbolic value of this kind of representation associates, in what it seems a fertility rite, the woman to the earth and, at the same time, the death–rebirth concepts of funerary cults and the ritual ploughing of foundation rites. On a small portion to the north end of the rocky outcrop there are many small figures probably made by the same artist. This panel seems to draw the inspiration from the classical themes of an hypothetical Valcamonica élite class of warrior–chiefs: ploughing scenes connected to erotic ones, hunters and dogs chasing goats, horsemen hunting “solar” deer, fighting scenes with attendants, tiny bird figures, etc. There are noteworthy analogies between the subjects carved here and the so–called Situla Art, which is a phenomenon spread in the Venetic, Raetian and Slovenian region of the Middle Iron Age (6th–4th centuries BC). Situla Art is marked by the same graphic icons — processions, ploughing scenes, erotic scenes, hunting, boxing, fighting, etc. — and seems to celebrate the local élite through the decoration of precious bronze vessels made for a prestigious offering or to be reused as cinerary urns or turned into part of rich grave goods. R. 12 is carved as well with plenty of fighting couples and isolated representations of ancient mythical epics. This is, for example, the case of a curious composition showing a human being armed with a square–bladed axe catching with his bare hand a big snake, while a second snake seems to be ridden by a small human being. Another striking feature of R. 12 is the high frequency of water birds engraved here in a particularly stylized way. R. 12, along with a few others of the Corno (such as R. 7), makes this area one of the richest concerning this subject in the whole Middle Valley, though the birds are usually almost completely absent in other sites of the western valley and are, on the contrary, particularly frequent between Foppe di Nadro, Naquane and Campanine (eastern side).
(Cited from Alberto Marretta in Marretta and Cittadini Valcamonica rock art parks. Guide to visiting routes, Edizioni del Centro, 2011, pp. 147-150)
 
ROCK 12 SERADINA I / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, author Alberto Marretta (2004).

ROCK 12 SERADINA I / SURVEY
CCSP, 2005. © CCSP 2012, author Marretta Alberto.

 
 
 
ROCK 18 SERADINA II
R. 18 is situated at the same altitude of R. 21 […]
The petroglyphs are spread everywhere on the most polished outcrops (including also the narrow access path), but the most noteworthy concentration can be found on a not very extended horizontal portion at the centre of the main bedrock. The dominant theme here is no doubt the building figures, though there are also fighting warriors and rare animals, such as an upside down bird on the above portion and a smaller bird between the minor fighting couple at the centre. It is also worth mentioning a pre–Roman inscription (mina?ai) composed of three identical signs that can be associated with the so–called water bird–headed solar boats and, finally, some deeply carved cup–marks occupying the low end of the engraving group. The building figures are typical of the eastern valley side and have more than 1500 examples in extremely varied typologies. They concentrate unusually on this bedrock (10 instances) and then almost completely disappear from the other Seradina sub–areas just to finally come back in considerable presence only in Bedolina, Redondo and especially in Pià d‘Ort. […]
Though the meaning of the building figures have not been definitely explained yet, this theme, which is unique among the European prehistoric rock art, has been interpreted as a device to represent peculiar community buildings, such as the food warehouses built on piles whose archaeological evidence are present, among others, at Grigioni sites (eastern Switzerland) and in the Raetian region. Another more recent hypothesis is essentially based on the fact that most of these figures were technically impossible to be built at that time. Thus they would have a mere symbolic function, possibly associated with the representation of the Underworld home, as can be similarly inferred by the hut–shaped cinerary urns spread in Etruria and Latium between the 9th and 7th centuries BC.
(Cited from Alberto Marretta in Marretta and Cittadini Valcamonica rock art parks. Guide to visiting routes, Edizioni del Centro, 2011, pp. 145-146
 
ROCK 18 SERADINA II / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, author Alberto Marretta (2004).

ROCK 18 SERADINA II / SURVEY
CCSP, 2005. © CCSP 2012, author Marretta Alberto.

 
 
 
ROCK 57 SERADINA I
The surface is dominated by one of the biggest geometrical compositions of the “topographical” type known today in Valcamonica. The main element is undoubtedly the extended grid-shaped motif, which seamlessly stretches across the surface of the rock (using some of the natural undulations) to completely cover the portion emerging from the ground. The center of the grid appears to be comprised of certain rectangular and sub-oval areas, filled with sets of cup-marks, located mainly in the central part of the rock and in the flat portions on the top of the rock. Several human figures armed with small swords and shields are superimposed on the composition, arranged mainly in the central-left part and along the perimeter. Despite being superimposed on the grid, the armed figures appear to have been made concurrently with the geometric pattern (Early Iron Age?) because of their careful arrangement with respect to it. This complex representation and its relationship with the most famous “maps” of the area above here – at Bedolina and Pià d‘Ort– are still being studied. Nevertheless, this iconographic theme is undoubtedly one of the major features of the Park and one of the most famous Valcamonica rock-art subjects. The Valcamonica “maps” could be some of the world‘s earliest maps created by the human being and are recognised worldwide as an indisputable starting point for the history of cartography.
(cited from tourism information panel, edited by Alberto Marretta, 2012)
 
ROCK 57 SERADINA I / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, author Alberto Marretta (2004).

ROCK 57 SERADINA I / SURVEY
© Alberto Marretta, 2012.

 
 
 
ROCK 21 SERADINA II
Long bedrock prevalently carved on its northern part is characterized by the presence of typical Seradina II themes: a long inscription in ancient local alphabet, several armed figures and horsemen. The inscription is placed clearly not by chance on the point where the rainwater falls from the basin above and is nowadays partially damaged by the water flow itself. It can be interpreted as a proof of the Iron Age introduction of the writing among the Valcamonica tribes, who adapted a north–Etruscan alphabet to the needs of the local language. The inscription, composed by one or likely two words to be read from right to left (eima iue??a), is perhaps related to the name of worshippers, dead people or, though less probably, deities. Among the human beings, the ones missing their inguinal zone are peculiar to this area, while the fighting warriors simply outlined can be often found on the entire valley side. Another unusual petroglyph is the fighting scene between a small horseman and a human being on foot armed with a large “ox leather” shield, in this case also strengthened with a central stick. The presence of a little bird above the previous scene and of an isolated building figure may recall some relationship with the not so far R. 18.
(Cited from Alberto Marretta in Marretta and Cittadini Valcamonica rock art parks. Guide to visiting routes, Edizioni del Centro, 2011, pp. 143-145)
 
ROCK 21 SERADINA II / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, author Alberto Marretta (2004).

ROCK 21 SERADINA II / SURVEY
CCSP, 2005. © CCSP 2012, author Marretta Alberto.

 
 
 
ROCK 11 SERADINA III
The latter, in either the inner–pointed or radiant varieties, is the main theme on the nearby R. 11, whose about 3 metres large surface is engraved also with animals and, on its western end, with a complex maze–shaped figure. The circles are probably a representation of solar symbols and constitute a typical theme in Valcamonica rock art especially starting from the Bronze Age (2nd millennium BC). In the same period in fact many of the European continent peoples expresses through the circle figure a common backgrounds of concepts and religious views associated with the solar cycles and with the sacredness of the fire (cinerary rite).
(Cited from Alberto Marretta in Marretta and Cittadini Valcamonica rock art parks. Guide to visiting routes, Edizioni del Centro, 2011, p. 152
 
ROCK 11 SERADINA III / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, historical archive.

ROCK 11 SERADINA III / SURVEY
Historical archive CCSP, 1970. © CCSP 2012.

 
 
 
ROCK 5 BEDOLINA
The rock n. 5 of Bedolina is one of the few surfaces among the area not marked by the main theme of the “topographic compositions”. There are instead several warrior figures (datable to different phases of the Iron Age, I millennium BC), a hunting scene in the central portion, many animals, a confused inscription in Latin letters and, above all, an outstanding horse figure (with horseman?) in the southern sector. This image, which since the beginning of research in Valcamonica was regarded as the best example, during a specific period of the Middle Iron Age (VI-V century BC), of strong influences by the mature Etruscan art upon the ancient local artists, seems clearly inspired by models of Greek-Italic type and differs noticeably from the sturdy schematism of most animal figures of the Iron Age, usually less caring to details and anatomical proportions of the subjects depicted. Note the presence on this surface of some “house” figures, very rare on the western side of Middle Valcamonica and in the Park fairly appearing only in the below area of Seradina II.
(cited from tourism information panel, edited by Alberto Marretta, 2012)
 
ROCK 5 BEDOLINA / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, author Alberto Marretta (2004).

ROCK 5 BEDOLINA / SURVEY
© Alberto Marretta, 2012.

 
 
 
ROCK 28 SERADINA II
The rock, situated in a panoramic position overlooking present-day Capo di Ponte, has long been known for two clear depictions of sheathed knives, with characteristic “anchor-shape” tips. The two objects are comparable to knives dating from the Late Iron Age - Roman period (II cent. BC - II cent. AD) found in Roman tombs from Valcamonica (Lovere, Borno) and from the Central Alps more generally (Introbio - Lecco , Canton Ticino) or in contexts related to cult activity (site of “Le Sante” - Capo di Ponte; Roman votive altar from Idro - Brescia). Other elements of the tombs in which the knives appear suggest that they could have been used as symbolic markers by individuals who marked themselves out in the community not only by wearing/using peculiar weapons (perhaps as sacrificial tools?), but also by their mastery of writing. The same phenomenon is observed in other Valcamonica rock art sites, where an association between images of these knives and inscriptions written in the local pre-Roman alphabet is frequently found (Pià d‘Ort, Foppe di Nadro, Piancogno, Berzo Demo.) At other sites the pictures are always executed by scratching the rock surface and not, as on this rock at Seradina, through the more traditional pecking technique.
(cited from tourism information panel, edited by Alberto Marretta, 2012)
 
ROCK 28 SERADINA II / SURVEY
© Alberto Marretta, 2012.

ROCK 28 SERADINA II / SURVEY
© Alberto Marretta, 2012.

 
 
 
ROCK 9 SERADINA III
Surface with typical overlapping from various engraved phases, starting around the end of the second millennium BC (figures schematic, disks, maps on the left) up to the central moments of the I millennium BC (warriors, rare animals, busts). There is a clear reminder of the most ancient figure in the choice of the subsequent space in a continuum of engraved tradition.
(cited from tourism information panel, edited by CCSP, 2007)
 
ROCK 9 SERADINA III / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, historical archive.

ROCK 9 SERADINA III / SURVEY
CCSP, 2007. © CCSP 2012.

 
 
 
ROCK 8 SERADINA I
Plowing scene, relatively isolated, to be read in the context in the intense representation of the subject in the area. That is one of three that sees, behind the job as a plowman and a hoer, a scene likely coupling: as typical in agricultural culture, preparation (Plowing) and fertilization of the earth has analogy with the sexual act, lived in the ritual (hierogamy). (advanced stage of the Old Age of Iron).
(cited from tourism information panel, edited by CCSP, 2007)
 
ROCK 8 SERADINA I / PHOTOGRAPHY
© Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici, 2012, historical archive.

ROCK 8 SERADINA I / SURVEY
CCSP, 2007. © CCSP 2012

 
Not so far from the Archaeological Park of Massi di Cemmo there is the City Archaeological Park of Seradina and Bedolina. Instituted in 2005 in occasion of the 50th anniversary of the National Park of Rock Engravings of Naquane, the City Archaeological Park of Seradina and Bedolina preserves a lot of engraved rocks. Visitors can follow five different itineraries of visit, guided also by didactic panels, discovering this wide heritage going through a wood easy to be reached and walked. The first area, indicated as orange path, is Seradina II with rock 21 and rock 18 on which it is possible to admire huts, warriors and a series of “coppelle”, that are circular signs with different dimensions and depth. A bit ahead it is possible to visit the brown path, the green path of Ronco Felappi, recently infrastructurized in order to guarantee also the connection, by foot, between the area of Seradina and the above one of Bedolina. This new junction, thanks to an activity promoted by Distretto Culturale di Valle Camonica, will be provided with "inclusive" pannels and elements, that can be easily read and used by everyone. The strenght of an "inclusive" design is that one to be able to speak to the community and to the single visitor, leaving out of consideration the age and the different capabilities of a person, with simple, undiscriminating solutions, giving value to the richness of everyone. and the red one. In this last zone there is rock 12, the “mother rock”, that is the biggest in the park and that one with the highest concentration of engravings. On it you can see plough scenes, stags with particular horns similar to lyres, armed people and hunting scenes. The fifth itinerary, the blue one, is above the area of Seradina, in Bedolina locality, towards Pescarzo and it is reachable thanks to a connection path inside the park.
Surveys, images and part of the texts have been provided by Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici www.ccsp.it
City Cultural Tourist Agency of Capo di Ponte
by Infopoint, via Nazionale nº 1, 25044 Capo di Ponte (BS)
Tel: +39 0364 42104
Cell: +39 334 6575628
email: agenzia.capodiponte@libero.it
City Archaeological Park inserted in the UNESCO World Heritage list, site n.94
“Rocky Art of Valle Camonica”
 
Managing Office: City Cultural Tourist Agency of Capo di Ponte
Scientific direction: Marretta Alberto
 

 
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