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The EpiCUM project aims at encoding in EpiDoc the entire epigraphic corpus of the Castello Ursino Civic Museum in Catania, in order to present and make it accessible via a single web interface – the digital museum. The project stems from the collaboration between the CNR Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies[N 1] and the Municipality of Catania [N 2]and gained the interest of the I.Sicily project[N 3] and the involvement of the Liceo Artistico M.M. Lazzaro of Catania[N 4].

The first phase of the project was mainly dedicated to the recognition of the epigraphs and the preparation of the Voci di Pietra exhibition, which proposes a selection of 35 epigraphs according to innovative presentation modalities through a smart use of technology and digital tools. The exhibition was created by developing a new communicative point of view of the epigraphic heritage, with the stylised reconstruction of a columbarium, the graphic restitution of an edicoletta tomb and the use of properly scenographic material such as the plexiglass reconstruction of a statuette of Venus Victrix. Innovative were the use of videos, real examples of storytelling for images, and the presence of a multimedia touch kiosk, which allows one to explore the exhibited material and to deepen the contents of the epigraphs.

The subsequent phase of the project focused on the analysis and on the EpiDoc encoding of all the inscriptions of the Civic Museum, and the creation of the digital museum. Through the EpiDoc encoding of the inscriptions and the online publication of the corresponding XML files, the epigraphic heritage of the Civic Museum becomes accessible to a wide range of possible users, ranging from the specialists to the more common home-users. All information on the epigraphs is contained in the XML files: currently, the EpiCUM project incorporates 580 different XML files, corresponding to the same number of different inscriptions collected in the Castello Ursino Civic Museum (conventionally referenced as EpiCUM1, EpiCUM2, etc.). In order to make the epigraphic information accessible and understandable even to a non-specialist audience, it has been chosen to codify in EpiDoc also the religious context, the provenance collections and the status of copy of the epigraphs.

Furthermore, according to the new trends in the promotion of cultural heritage through digital and information technologies and the European Commission Recommendation on the digitization and online accessibility of cultural materials and digital preservation, it is made available in the open data section the semantic organization in open data of the themes of the epigraphic texts in a single homogeneous container according to consolidated international standards.


  • Salvatore Cristofaro, Daria Spampinato. Aspetti funzionali e implementativi del Museo epigrafico digitale EpiCUM. Accettato in Umanistica Digitale n.9, 2020.
  • Salvatore Cristofaro, Daria Spampinato. EpiCUM. Un museo epigrafico digitale per visitatori e specialisti. In S. Allegrezza (Ed.), AIUCD2019 – Book of Abstracts. Udine: In: Quaderni di Umanistica Digitale, 2019, 157-163. https://doi.org/10.6092/unibo/amsacta/6361.
  • Serena Agodi, Salvatore Cristofaro, Valentina Noto, Jonathan R.W. Prag, Daria Spampinato. Una collaborazione tra museo, enti di ricerca e scuola: l’epigrafia digitale e l’alternanza scuola lavoro. In Umanistica Digitale 2 (2018), pp. 207-224. https://doi.org/10.6092/issn.2532-8816/7298.