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Translated Jeff Matthews

This a term coined in 1929 to indicate the type of fortification found in the French Maginot Line consisting of an isolated casemate or a number of them grouped in a single structure. In Italian the corresponding term is malloppo.

An interesting and exhaustive work was presented by the speleologist Davide Bagnascino (San Remo Assoc. for the (Study of Artificial Cavvities – S.C.A.S.):

Bagnaschino D., “La Linea Maginot delle Alpi, caratteristiche e organizzazione della sistemazione difensiva francese al confine con l’Italia”, in Breda M. A. (ed.), Luoghi e Architetture della Transizione: 1919-1939. Sites and Architectural Structures of the Transition Period: 1919-1939. Border defense system and air raid protection in the cities, conservation, reuse, Hypogean Archaeology n. 8, British Archaeological Reports International Series 2675, Oxford 2014, pp. 1-38.


Padovan Gianluca (ed. ), Archaeology of the Subsoil. Lectures and studies of artificial cavities. British Archaeological Reports, International Series 1416, Oxford 2005.

Basilico Roberto et alii, Italian Cadastre of Artificial Cavities. Part 1. (Including introductory comments and a classification), B.A.R. International Series 1599, Oxford 2007.

Gianluca Padovan (Associazione S.C.A.M. – Federazione Nazionale Cavità Artificiali)

Click on images to enlarge

Bagnaschino D., La Linea Maginot del Mare
[The Maginot Line of the Sea]

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