Exclusive Museums and Historical Archives network

2024 22 May

SEuC-Sources of European Culture Exclusive Museums and Historical Archives network

In 2011, UNESCO recognized the Longobard Culture as the "primary root of European culture, later developed by the Carolingians" due to the historical function carried out by the Longobard people with the fusion - favored by Christian ideals - of Traditions and Cultures Germanic, Greco-Roman, Byzantine-Oriental, to which have been added the contributions of contacts with Slavic and Arab Traditions and Cultures. A progressive elaboration, developed during the epochal Longobard migration from the Northern Seas (1st century BC), to central-eastern Europe, to the Mediterranean and concluded - as an exercise of direct Longobard dominion over large territories of the Italian peninsula - in 1076 AD with the Norman conquest of the Longobard Principality of Salerno. The prestigious recognition occurred in the context of the inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage List of the serial site "The Longobards in Italy. The centers of power (568-774 AD)”.

The Longobardia Association, creator and promoter of the “Longobard Ways across Europe” Route - built on the basis of the guidelines established by the Council of Europe for European Cultural Routes - has modeled the trans-european itinerary taking as points of reference both the places of archaeological finds scientifically attributed throughout Europe to the Longobard peoples, both the places where they are kept (the Museums) and those in which the documents from the Early Middle Ages are preserved (the Historical Archives, some of which are held by the Museums themselves). In this sense, the Longobard Route enhances the places where the evolutionary effects of the historical legacy of the Longobard people are highlighted and in which knowledge of their original culture is disseminated to a wide public, which has left profound traces, still perceptible at various levels (artistic-monumental, religious, linguistic, toponymic and others).


Sources of European Culture

In fact, Museums and Historical Archives of Longobard interest as a whole give shape to a specialist network, custodian of the constituent elements of the "primary root of European Culture" and are therefore rightly definable as "Sources of European Culture" with the prestige that it also derives as a function of today's current search for factors that have the value of objective historical bases in the consolidation and dissemination of the most complete concept of "European citizenship". Furthermore, museums and historical archives have always been an unavoidable point of reference for university and specialist studies and research.

Among the possible research, that on the consequences and outcomes of the epochal Longobard migration is not unrelated, defined as an "early medieval example of success of the migration-integration phenomenon". Early medieval times and modern times are experiencing similar phenomena today even if they are too distant in time. But even in this case the study of a historical "model", partly European and partly Mediterranean, can provide useful ideas for today's reflections and motivated insights.


Environmental and landscape assets

The criteria and objectives establishing the European Cultural Itineraries adopted by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe in Resolution CM/RES (2013)67 establish the need for the European Cultural Routes to also have landscape assets as their object. This is, however, a basic and strategic condition in the valorisation of the European territories sharing the Longobard historical experience. In fact, with the exception of Italy (where artistic-monumental evidences of the time abound), in the other countries crossed by the "european geocultural corridor" designed by the Longobard itinerary, the fixed points in the illustration of the passage of those people are exclusively constituted by the Museum exhibition rooms, from the places of archaeological finds and from rare traces of wooden settlements.

Over time, the appearance of the territories has changed profoundly, but some characteristic views remain and are still visible - geosites, ancient settlements, places of worship, remnants of ancestral routes and Roman roads, etc. – which represent as many cultural, religious and environmental tourist destinations. Just as there exist, for example in the agri-food and artisanal fields, ancient techniques and productions which, among other things, find or can find relaunch or reworking in a modern key, creating new conditions of tourist interest. In this overall perspective, the centrality of the network's Museums is reconfirmed, which - where supported by the integrated collaboration of the institutional and economic realities of the respective territories - are aimed at developing a proactive role of scientific and tourist coordination as "Showcases of the Territory".


The network

Upon input from the Longobardia Association, the following museums, equipped with their own historical archives, are founding members of the “Sources of European Culture – Longobard primary Root” network:


Subsequent memberships:


Further membership procedures are underway