The volume is part of the project to create the archaeological map of the Middle Ages articulated according to the cut of the official IGM cartography, providing for each territory investigated a geomorphological analysis and an attempt to reconstruct the road network, as well as summary considerations on the evolution and ways of the settlement in the different periods of the Middle Ages. In this volume, Sheet 76 (Ferrara) of the IGM is examined, except for the strip of the four southernmost tablets (II SE-SW, III SE-SW) and the urban area of Ferrara. The geomorphological scaffolding of this territory is made up of rivers, which are the supporting axes of the population and mark the subsequent settlement phases with their evolution. The hydrographic system also constitutes the support of the viability of this territory, in which the waterways, both natural and artificial, represented the main connecting axes in the Middle Ages.
Particular attention is paid to the toponymic source, recording the names of fiefs, canals and minor localities, with the significant variants of the documentary sources, obtaining the identification of even minor medieval localities, on the basis of some surviving speech. These sites report to environmental, functional, economic and historical situations that have disappeared and allow a more analytical and multifaceted reconstruction of the events of the settlement.
In the preparation of the archaeological cartography, the guide is given by the various fossil signs in the landscape, such as the road routes that exploit the banks of the disappeared rivers, and by precise observations by geologists and geomorphologists.