The Messinian foredeep deposits of the Apennines have been studied for many years and their stratigraphy has been recently revised in various papers. However, these studies have not taken into consideration the Southern Laga Basin of Northern Abruzzo, which is believed to have been the largest and most rapidly subsiding turbiditic depocenter of the Apennine foredeep during the Messinian, together with the basin buried under the Po Plain. Taking a physical stratigraphic approach, a new stratigraphic scheme is proposed for the deepest portion of the Laga basin. This makes it possible to document the striking similarities of Messinian depositional events recorded in the Southern Laga Basin with those recognised in other sectors of the Apenninic foreland. The correlative depositional events together with the palaeoenvironmental interpretation of well-framed depositional units makes it possible to mark the vertical transition from deep marine to lacustrine and fluvio-deltaic environments, encouraging reconsideration of the real bathymetry of the Southern Laga Basin in Northern Abruzzo. The four Messinian units which were recognised correspond to discrete evolutionary steps of the Southern Laga Basin marking the transition from a foredeep to a wedge-top basin. Regional geologic considerations suggest that these depositional events were strongly controlled by the large-scale tectonic evolution of the Apennine foreland, which thus preserves a similar tectonic and sedimentary history over a wide area.

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