Notes Monday 8/31/2015 - Early Origins the Etruscans Most...

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Early Origins: the Etruscans Most that we know about Etruscan history today comes to us from indirect sources- either from Roman historians who had a “patriotic axe” to grind, or from Ancient Greek historians, who in some cases failed to grasp the very different sets of values held by the Etruscans. For example the status of women in Etruscan society, which was so alien to the Greeks and Romans alike, both being of Indo-European origins. The Greeks saw the Etruscans as being an immoral race of people (although this accusation was on very shaky ground given their own morality). The Greeks also refer to the Etruscans quite frequently as pirates. There is no evidence to suggest that the Etruscans dabbled in piracy any more than other races of the day, and what was piracy to one group of people was defense to others. One fact was indisputable, and that was that during their heyday, the Etruscans controlled a significant part of the Mediterranean. The Etruscans went on to lay the foundation of the city of Rome. To clear the shepherds huts which once littered the Palatine Hill, to drain the swamps and transform what had been a collection of tribal sheep herders into a true city which would eventually dominate large tracts of Europe. From their beginnings in the area that is now Tuscany, these Etruscans had deep rooted influences which survive to this day. Although the Etruscan language is by no means totally decoded, we now know enough to see that many words of Etruscan origin found themselves into Latin and from there into English. For an unknown language, many Etruscan words look very familiar. Rome I: Early Origins and the Republic The inscription on the Lemnos Stele was dated at 600 B.C.E. and was written in a language similar to Etruscan. It was found in a warrior's tomb with weapons and pottery which are very similar to early Etruscan. The necropolis of the city contained 130 cremated burials. In the women's burials an early form of Etruscan Bucchero pottery was found. Bucchero clay was used by the people of Asia Minor and by the Etruscans. In the male sites daggers and axes of the Cretan and Etruscan models were found. The evidence, then, is for a small community which had strong cultural ties with the Etruscans and, to a lesser extent, the inhabitants of Asia Minor. Numerous artifacts of Etruscan civilization have been discovered in the vast zone to the north of the Arno (in Tuscany, flows through the city of Florence) between the Sieve and Ombrone rivers . The so-called " Fiesole stelae " date back as far as the late 6th century B.C.E. The Etruscan settlement of Fiesole was probably the center of a zone where settlements were scattered over the hillsides which overlook the Florentine basin.
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