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Micro-focused and conventional Brillouin light scattering techniques have been exploited to investigate the spectrum of magnetic excitations (eigenmodes) of elliptical permalloy nanorings in the vortex ground state. The interpretation of the experimental data has been achieved using the dynamical matrix method. A careful comparison of the calculated frequency and profiles of magnetic modes with the experimental data, allowed us to identify the character of the different modes in terms of spatial symmetry and localization. In particular, the spatial extent of each mode was directly visualized by measurement of two-dimensional maps of the mode intensity over the ring surface.