Integrated geophysical archaeological prospection resulting in the discovery of the school of gladiators in the Roman town of Carnuntum in Austria


In the Roman town of Carnuntum 40 km south-east of Vienna (Austria) the unique discovery of a school of gladiators was made using a multi-disciplinary approach based on high-resolution near-surface geophysical prospection. The outstandingly well preserved architecture was revealed through non-invasive mapping using latest highly efficient multichannel ground penetrating radar systems. Foundations of a building complex including a circular training arena surrounded by wooden stands, the gladiator’s living quarters, practice fields and an associated cemetery were mapped in unprecedented detail. In this paper, state-of-the-art near-surface geophysical prospection involving large-scale data acquisition, precise real-time positioning, and efficient data processing followed by detailed geophysical and archaeological interpretation is presented.

Proceedings of the 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists