This research presents a novel approach based on the combination of nanotechnology and Roman technology by investigating how adding nanoCa(OH)(2) and nanoSiO(2) modify the performance of air lime mortars containing Roman ceramics. Microstructural, physico-mechanical properties were periodically controlled until 120 days of curing. XRD and TGA analyses showed that adding nanoSiO(2) either alone or with nanoCa(OH)(2) were more beneficial to improve the pozzolanic activity in the mortars. The less stable hydrated phases generated led to microcracks which eventually impaired compressive strength but enhanced deformability capacity. These results provide insight into the development of highly compatible mortars for cultural heritage. (C) 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.