Gaius Cilnius Maecenas National Archaeological Museum and Roman amphitheatre
The Gaius Cilnius Maecenas National Archaeological Museum is housed in the complex that used to be the Monastery of St Bernard, which was built in the fourteenth century over the remains of the early second-century AD Roman amphitheatre. Comprising a total of no less than 26 rooms, the museum can boast an exceptional collection of the pottery known as sealed Arezzo ware (the name describes an original technique for waterproofing the pottery) unearthed during excavations in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and is home to the splendid red figure krater with spiral handles attributed to the Attic potter Euphronios and decorated with scenes of battle between the Amazons and the ancient Greeks.
Numbering among the museum’s most important artefacts are the unparalleled jewellery found in the Poggio del Sole necropolis, an imposing multi-coloured decorative slab of stone depicting battle scenes from the pediment of a temple discovered in the city, a series of head portraits unearthed in Via della Società Operaia in Arezzo, the artefacts from the Sanctuary of Castelsecco (at San Cornelio, near Arezzo) and a very rare example of a coin on such a large scale that only one other such piece is known anywhere in the world.
Meanwhile, the Roman era is represented by the mosaics, priceless tomb furnishings and a male portrait made of chrysography (gold on glass), one of the finest known examples of this rare technique.