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Catalogue of the Etruscan Gallery of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Catalogue of the Etruscan Gallery of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Jean MacIntosh Turfa
Copyright Date: 2005
Pages: 816
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  • Book Info
    Catalogue of the Etruscan Gallery of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
    Book Description:

    Combining a guide for the Museum visitor with scholarly discussions of all objects on display, this catalogue provides background on the society, history, technology, and commerce of the Etruscan and Faliscan cultures from the ninth through the first centuries B.C. Several groups of material illustrate social, historical, and technological phenomena currently at the forefront of scholarly debate and study, such as the crucial period of the turnover from Iron Age hut villages to the fully urbanized princely Etruscan cities, the development and extent of ancient literacy, and the position of women and children in ancient societies. Many special objects seldom found or generally inaccessible in the United States include Faliscan tomb groups, Etruscan inscriptions, helmets, and trade goods. The catalogue presents and analyzes objects of warfare, weaving, animals, religious beliefs, architectural and terracotta roofing ornaments, Etruscan bronze-working for utensils, weapons, and artwork, and fine, generic portraiture. It discusses the symbolic meaning of such objects deposited in tombs as a chariot buried with a Faliscan lady at Narce, a senator's folding stool buried in a later tomb at Chiusi, and a pair of horse bits with the teeth of a chariot team still adhering to them where the teeth fell when sacrificed for a funeral in the fifth-century necropolis at Tarquinia-much later than the horse sacrifice was previously known in Etruria.

    eISBN: 978-1-934536-25-4
    Subjects: Archaeology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Illustrations
    (pp. vii-x)
  4. Tables
    (pp. xi-xi)
  5. Bibliographic Abbreviations Journals and Reference Works
    (pp. xii-xii)
  6. Preface Etruscan Culture as Represented in the Collection of the University of Pennsylvania Museum
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  7. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xv-xvii)
  8. Part IA: The Archaeology of Early Central Italy

    • [Part IA: Introduction]
      (pp. 1-2)

      The chapters in this section are arranged in the order of the display units in the gallery: “Early Etruscans” to “Etruria’s Final Days,” or from the Iron Age through the period of Etruscan decline and absorption by Rome (in the 3rd–1st centuries BC). The range of Etruscan and Faliscan culture and history is covered in thematic units: “Warriors and Weavers,” which describes the tombs of Faliscan Narce (8th–6th centuries BC) and the society of which they are a microcosm; “Fragile Records: The Surviving Sources of Etruscan Language,” illustrated with inscriptions from the collection; “Daily Life in Etruria”; “Greek...

    • 1 Early Etruscans: A Glimpse of Iron Age and Orientalizing Italy through Artifacts
      (pp. 3-12)

      Objects illustrating the Italian Iron Age consist mainly of a fine set of tomb groups excavated at Vulci and Narce, mainly depositions of the late Villanovan and Orientalizing periods, and also from tombs excavated at Bisenzio and Cerveteri and obtained from Italian dealers during the 1890s. Although these finds are representative especially of southern and interior Etruria and the Faliscan territory, goods from a wider geographic area are indicative of an exchange network that already included Bologna and the Po region.

      Most of the parallels cited for such early pieces derive from a small number of sites, especially Veii, Cerveteri,...

    • 2 Warriors and Weavers: The Settlement of Narce and the Early History of the Faliscans
      (pp. 13-22)

      The fortunes of the Etruscans and the Italic peoples of central Italy always were intertwined, in terms of material culture and religion and eventually in political and military history, as they all resisted and then had to give way to Roman domination. There always must have been intermarriage and exchange between these neighboring groups. By the Late Bronze Age, many pottery and metal types shared the same design, usage, and technology. From subsequent periods, archaeological finds, sanctuaries and cults, representational art, and classical literature all demonstrate the close relationship between peoples across the regions of the Po Valley and Upper...

    • 3 Fragile Records: The Surviving Sources of Etruscan Language
      (pp. 23-26)

      Because the Etruscans took advantage of the organic materials in their environment for the media upon which to record their documents, few long texts have survived for us to study. While it is patently untrue that the Etruscan language is undeciphered, much less is known of it than of Greek or Latin. The original wealth of literature, daily notes, and correspondence recorded on parchment, wooden and wax tablets, and even cloth, are lost; only the more cryptic forms of labels, dedications, and tombstones remain. One rare exception is the famous “Zagreb mummy binding,” a linen book of religious rituals preserved...

    • 4 Daily Life in Etruria: The Accouterments of War and Peace, Work and Home
      (pp. 27-34)

      The condition or recorded contexts of most pieces show them to have been deposited in tombs, some after a lifetime of use and others probably obtained or made especially for funerary deposition (like terracotta jewelry). The exhibition of pieces from the Vatican collections that toured during the 1990s (“The Etruscans: Legacy of a Lost Civilization from the Vatican Museums”) provided a representative sampling of all aspects of Etruscan life, from the Villanovan through Hellenistic periods.¹

      The cities represented by these personal finds include Orientalizing and Archaic Bisenzio, Narce, Vulci, Orvieto, and Chiusi (described in chapters 1 and 2), and a...

    • 5 Greek Potters and Etruscan Consumers
      (pp. 35-36)

      When pottery of pale clay painted with geometric patterns first reached Italy, it had a strong impact on local potters. The vectors for such imports were networks of settlements like the colony of Pithekoussai in the Bay of Naples, a joint enterprise of Euboean and Corinthian Greeks, and Syrians and Phoenicians of the Levant.¹ Eventually, toward the end of the 8th century and through the 7th, many elite funerals included the display and offering of at least one cup made in a style that had been stimulated by Greek chevron skyphoi. Thereafter, light-toned clay thrown on the potter’s wheel would...

    • 6 Etruscan Technology and Commerce: The Crafts that Made Etruria Famous, and the Objects of Mediterranean Exchange
      (pp. 37-44)

      At one time it was said that the Etruscans maintained a “thalassocracy,” hegemony over travel and transport on the seas around the Italian archipelago and beyond. Aristotle (Politics 3.5.10–11) commented upon their treaty alliance with the Carthaginians, creating the image of the two major rivals of Greek colonization and commerce as being allied to prevent the expansion, or at times survival, of the Greek colonial cities of Sicily, south Italy, and southern France.¹

      What made the Etruscans competitive, in addition to their prowess at shipbuilding and seafaring, were their products; many of these commodities are no longer visible in...

    • 7 The Art of Worship: Votive Religion and Temple Architecture in Central Italy
      (pp. 45-51)

      The Etruscans were respected by other cultures for their piety and religious learning; the Roman state on occasion sought the advice of Etruscan priests in matters of civic rituals and divination. It appears, also, that the earliest non-Greek cult buildings and monumental temples to be erected in Italy were those at the famous Etruscan sanctuaries. Votive offerings and their dedication by inscription also were stimulated by Etruscan practices. Objects illustrating Etruscan religion include parts of the decoration of actual temples or sanctuaries, mainly in the form of their terracotta roof revetments (sets of examples from Orvieto, Cerveteri, and Tarquinia), and...

    • 8 Etruria’s Final Days: Life and Death during the Late Period of Etruscan History
      (pp. 52-59)

      The 4th century in Etruria already showed the tendencies of economic and political downturn that would gain momentum through the “Late” period, defined as the 4th–1st centuries BC. This chronological period is more difficult to define. Each city fell at a different date under the sway or outright military conquest of the Roman state, but a new spirit was evident in religion, art, and society by the mid-4th century. It corresponds to the developments of the Greek Hellenistic period. During the last quarter of the 20th century, scholars began to scrutinize the chronology of this period, offering more precise...

  9. PART IB Tomb Groups Represented in the Gallery
    (pp. 61-68)

    The tomb groups for which some documentation exists are described below. They are in alphanumeric order arranged by city location, rather than by their relative chronological order. The concordances provides provenance information, as do the catalogue entries on certain urns and sarcophagi (e.g., Musarna, 293), which obviously derive from tombs, although their original locations or grave groups have not been fully documented.¹ The tombs at Montebello, Narce, Tuscania, and Vulci were excavated only a year or less prior to their exportation to Philadelphia, and it appears that most materials were kept together and labeled properly (but see Vulci Tombs B...

  10. Notes to Parts IA, IB
    (pp. 69-76)
  11. Color Plates
    (pp. None)
  12. Part II: Catalogue of Objects Displayed
    (pp. 81-288)
  13. References
    (pp. 289-308)
  14. Concordances
    (pp. 309-320)
  15. Index
    (pp. 321-329)
  16. Back Matter
    (pp. 331-331)