The archaeological site of Ksar Seghir: confluence of civilisations between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic (16th-17th centuries)


Start . 2013

Duration . 24 months

Principal Investigators André Teixeira (CHAM) / Abdelatif El Boudjay (DRCTT)



Funding Entity

Centre National pour la Recherche Scientifique et Technique
Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia

Main Research Unit

CHAM - Centro de Humanidades / Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas/Universidade Nova de Lisboa | Universidade dos Açores


Direcção Geral do Património Cultural



Ksar Seghir, located on the southern coast of the Strait of Gibraltar, is the only out of ancient Portuguese possessions in Morocco that lasted until today as an archaeological site, displaying also an important medieval Islamic stratum. The project seeks to deepen the knowledge about this site, focusing on the study of the communication and clashes between Islamic and Christian communities in the western Mediterranean in the late Middle Ages and early modern times, mainly through archaeological research.




The central research field of this project is the archaeological site of Ksar Seghir (Alcácer Ceguer), on the southern coast of the Strait of Gibraltar, a strategic site throughout history, which worked as a connection between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic and between Europe and Africa. The period of the Portuguese occupation, between 1458 and 1550, will be highlighted, due to its relevance as an initial experience of the Iberian expansion in the sea, in a crucial time between Middle Age and modern time. The great wealth of this site lies also in the possibility of studying the contacts and civilizational and cultural confrontations between Islamic and Christian communities of the Mediterranean West, thus we will try to deepen the knowledge on the time Muslims dominated the city. We consider fundamental to base the understanding of the site on a view of its territory, in its vast diachrony of human settlement.

With this project, we aspire to contribute to the study of these issues through archaeological research, albeit in strict articulation with history and art history, among other areas of knowledge. The aim is to reassess and depart from the data from previous fieldwork on the site, namely those of the Moroccan-American mission of the years 1970-80, making occasional new field interventions. This project materialises a protocol signed between the Moroccan and Portuguese institutions part of this project.







André Teixeira   .   Coordenator  

Abdelatif El Boudjay   .   Coordenator  

André Bargão (CHAM)
Gonçalo Correia Lopes (CHAM)
Joana Bento Torres (CHAM)
Luís Serrão Gil (CHAM)
Mostafa Azouga
Tarik Moujoud