The Etruscans

Overview

The Etruscans have long been a rich source of research and intellectual inquiry as the most significant ethnic group who resided in ancient Etruria, current-day Tuscany and Umbria in Italy. A well-defined polity, the Etruscans were an advanced people whose presence on the Italian peninsula from the 8th to 4th century B.C. had an enormous impact on Roman culture, whose rise to power saw the collapse of Etruscan civilization.

This book is extensive in its scope: it traces the rise...

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Overview

The Etruscans have long been a rich source of research and intellectual inquiry as the most significant ethnic group who resided in ancient Etruria, current-day Tuscany and Umbria in Italy. A well-defined polity, the Etruscans were an advanced people whose presence on the Italian peninsula from the 8th to 4th century B.C. had an enormous impact on Roman culture, whose rise to power saw the collapse of Etruscan civilization.

This book is extensive in its scope: it traces the rise of the Etruscans at the end of the Bronze age; examines the economic structure of the society; explores the emergence of a powerful aristocracy in the period from 750-650 B.C.; and the considerable religious and cultural life of the group. This knowledge has largely been gleaned from a wealth of monuments and material culture which the Etruscans left behind including architecture (the various forms of which indicate familial structure and socio-economic standing, not to mention the larger social structure of Etruscan society) and applied arts, such as bronze objects for both ceremonial use and everyday life, which were produced by an artisan class for a wealthy and demanding aristocracy.

Etruscan contributions to the history of art are also of immense importance and are explored in depth in this volume. Etruscan wall painting was exceptional in that it is one of the few examples of pre-Roman artistic production of this genre. Sculpture was also a relatively highly developed form of art and the Etruscans are known for their important experiments with form. Noted scholar Mario Torelli, editor of the book, gathers here an illuminating collection of essays reflective of the most current research on the Etruscans. As a professor of classical archaeology for nearly three decades who has directed archeological digs at some of the most significant Etruscan sites, Torelli offers a unique insight into the scholarly terrain of Etruscan studies. Torelli also contributes a substantive essay on Etruscan religion, exploring the rather exceptional character of this important aspect of Etruscan life. Lavishly illustrated with beautiful reproductions of Etruscan art and culture, this impressive catalogue explores every aspect of the Etruscan people and their artistic and cultural legacy in the most expansive consideration of their enormous contribution to Western culture to date. The exhibition of the same name, organized by the world-renowned Palazzo Grassi, Venice, and this volume are destined to be landmarks in Etruscan studies.

Author Biography: Mario Torelli is currently Professor of Classical Archaeology at the University of Perugia in Italy. After completing his doctorate at the University of Rome in 1960, Torelli has had numerous academic appointments at such institutions as the University of Cagliari, and held visiting professorships at University of Paris, University of Michigan, and Princeton University, among others. In addition to his academic endeavors, he has directed archaeological digs at numerous Etruscan sites.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780847823918
  • Publisher: Rizzoli
  • Publication date: 5/1/1901
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 672
  • Product dimensions: 8.65 (w) x 12.07 (h) x 2.05 (d)

Table of Contents

Presentation 17
The Original Features of the Etruscan Peoples 25
The Origins of the Etruscans: A Controversy Handed Down from Antiquity 43
The Origin and Diffusion of Villanovan Culture 53
Economic Structure 73
Coins 89
Trade 97
The Etruscan Aristocracy in the Orientalizing Period: Culture, Economy, Relations 111
The Woman's Role 131
The Hellenzation of Etruria 141
The Etruscan Expansion into Campania 157
The Etruscan Expansion in the Po Valley 169
Relations with Neighboring Peoples 181
The Etruscans and the Veneti: Forms of Exchange and Processes of Acculturation 191
The Etruscans and the Lands South of Campania 197
Political Forms in the Archaic Period 205
Republican Political Forms 227
The Ideology of the Etruscan City 243
The Social Structure and the Serf Question 255
Etruscan Religion 273
Etruscan Urban Planning 291
Civil, Religious, and Domestic Architecture 313
Tomb Architecture 335
Painting 345
Sculpture 365
Etruscan Bronzes 393
Archaic Pottery: Impasto and Bucchero Wares 405
Painted Pottery of the Archaic Period 421
Etruscan Painted Ware of the Classical and Hellenistic Period 439
The Minor Arts 455
The Writing 477
The Language 485
The Tyrrheni of Lemnos 501
Etruscan Antiquarianism 507
The Vatican's Museo Gregoriano Etrusco from the Nineteenth Century and Beyond 511
The Museo Archeologico Nazionale of Florence 515
The Museo Nazionale Etrusco di villa Giulia 523
From the Bronze age to the Iron Age 533
The Villanovan Civilization 536
The Economy 543
Agriculture
The Mines
Piracy and Trade
Warfare
The Ideal Forms 565
Opulence
The Role of Women
The Cult of the Ancestors and the Continuity of the Clan
The Rituals of the Archaic Power
Hellenization
The Urban Political Forms
The Renewed Society of the Fourth Century
The Roman Conquest 629
The Servants 632
The Anguish of the Decline 634
The Role of the Past and of the Esoteric Doctrines
The Diaspora and Nostalgia
Chronology 642
Bibliography 646
Topographic Index of Works 664
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