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Bill Thayer

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This webpage reproduces a chapter of
The Cities and Cemeteries of Etruria

by George Dennis

published by John Murray, Albemarle Street
London, 1848.

The text is in the public domain.


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 p17  Chapter XXXIII


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— saxo fundata vetusto

Urbis Agyllinae sedes; ubi Lydia quondam

Gens, bello praeclara, jugis insedit Etruscis.

— Virgil.

Buried he lay, where thousands before
For thousands of years were inhumed on the shore
What of them is left to tell
Where they lie, and how they fell!

— Byron.

These headings of the author's are used here as local links to text on this webpage.
Let the page load completely before clicking on them.

The Vaccina, and its ancient honours Scenes of Virgil's pictures Cervetri and its accommodation Antiquity and origin of Agylla Change of name History of Caere Present desolation of the site Vestiges of the ancient city Picturesque charms The Banditaccia Singular cemetery A true "city of the dead" Plans of the tombs Tumuli Tombs recently opened Grotta della Sedia Arm-chair of rock Tomb of the Seats and Shields Grotta del Triclinio Paintings on its walls Lamentable decay A pretty pair Roman inscription Late date of the paintings Another painted tomb Grotta de' Sarcofagi Singular sarcophagi Grotta dell' Alcova Resemblance to a temple Architectural interest Tomb of the Tarquins Probably of the royal blood of Rome Numerous inscriptions Sepulchral niches Grotta Regulini-Galassi Peculiar construction of this sepulchre High antiquity The warrior's chamber, and its furniture The Priest's or Princess's chamber, and its wonderful jewellery Side-chambers Sad neglect of this sepulchre Pelasgic alphabet and primer, inscribed on a pot Other relics of the Pelasgic tongue Monte Abatone Grotta Campana Its decorations, and furniture Grotta della Sedia, Monted'Oro Arm-chair of rock Grotta Torlonia Singular entrance and vestibule Crumbling dead Tombs of La Zambra Ancient pottery of Caere Artena

Appendix. Shields as sepulchral decorations Genii and Junones

Soon after leaving Santa Severa, on the way to the Holy City, the traveller will espy before him a small village with one prominent building sparkling in the sun, at the foot of the hills which rise inland, dark with wood. When he has journeyed onward for seven miles, he will find himself between this village and a solitary tower on the coast, called Torre Flavia. Here he will cross a rivulet known by  p18 the homely name of La Vaccina, or the Cow-stream. Insignificant as this turbid brook may appear, let him pause a moment on the bridge and bethink him that it has had the honour of being sung by Virgil. It is the Caeritis amnis of the Aeneid,1 on whose banks Tarcho and his Etruscans pitched their camps, and Aeneas received from his divine mother his god-wrought arms and the prophetic shield eloquent of the future glories of Rome,

— clypei non enarrabile textum.

Illic res Italas, Romanorumque triumphos,

Fecerat Ignipotens.

The eye wanders up the shrub-fringed stream, over bare undulating downs, the arva lata of ancient song, to the hills swelling into peaks and girt with a broad belt of olive and ilex. There frowned the dark grove of Silvanus, of dread antiquity, and there, on yon red cliffs — the "ancient heights" of Virgil — sat the once opulent and powerful city of Agylla, the Caere of the Etruscans, now represented, in name and site alone, but miserable village of Cervetri. All this is hallowed ground — religione patrum latè sacer — hallowed, not by the traditions of evanescent creeds, nor even by the hoary antiquity of the site, so much as by the homage the heart ever pays to the undying creations of the fathers of song. The hillocks which rise here and there on the wide downs, are so many sepulchres of princes and heroes of old, coeval, it may be, with those on the plains of Troy; and if not, like them, the standing records of traditional events, at least the mysterious memorials of a prior age, which led the poet to select this spot as a fit scene for his verse. The large mound which rises close to the bridge may be the celsus collis whence Aeneas gazed on the Etruscan camp.2 No warlike sights or sounds now disturb the  p19 rural quiet of the scene. Sword and spear are exchanged for crook and ploughshare; and the only sound likely to catch the ear is the lowing of cattle, the baying of sheep-dogs, or the cry of the pecorajo as he marches at the head of his flock, and calls them to follow him to their fold or to fresh pastures.3 Silvanus, "the god of fields and cattle," has still dominion in the land.4

If the traveller be in a vehicle, he must leave the high road a little before reaching the Vaccina, where a country-track crosses the downs to Cervetri. This same track he must pursue should he approach Cervetri from the side of Palo. For the pedestrian or horseman there is another, but longer path, just before reaching a second streamlet, known by the ominous name of La Sanguinara.5 By the carriage-track he will ford the Vaccina at the chapel of Sta Maria de' Canneti, and presently finds himself between the walls of Cervetri and the heights of the ancient city.

Cervetri, the representative of Agylla, is a miserable village, with 100 or 200 inhabitants, and is utterly void of interest. It is surrounded by fortifications of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, and stands just without the lion of the ancient walls, so that it is annexed to, rather than occupies, the site of the original city. The village, and the  p20 land for some miles round it, are the property of Prince Ruspoli, whose palace forms a conspicuous object in the scene. This noble seldom makes excavations himself, but allows them to be carried on by his friends, who are of a more speculative or philarchaic turn of mind. It is to the enterprise of the Cavaliere Campana, of General Galassi, and of the reverend arch-priest of Cervetri, Don Alessandro Regulini, that we owe the numerous and remarkable objects of Etruscan antiquity that have been brought to light here of late years.

The cicerone of whose services and keys the visitor who would see the tombs must avail himself, is a good-tempered tobacconist, Flavio Passegieri, to be found in his shop in the little piazza. Most travellers will find it sufficient to lionize the site in a day's excursion from Palo, four or five miles distant, where there is a decent inn; but such as would devote more than a hurried day to the antiquities of Caere, and to avoid the transit to and from Palo, are willing to put up with village accommodation, will find a clean bed and refreshment in the house of a vetturino, Pacifico Rosati, one of the most obliging, attentive hosts it has been my lot to encounter in Italy. He will also dress a meal, if need be, for the excursionist, who must not expect, however, the delicacies for which Caere was renowned of old.6

Remote as are the days of the Etruscans, this city boasts a far prior antiquity. It was originally called Agylla, and is classed by Dionysius among the primitive towns of Central Italy, which were either built by the united Pelasgi and Aborigines, or taken from them by the Siculi, the earliest possessors of the land, ages before the foundation  p21 of the Etruscan state.7 That it was at least Pelasgic and of very remote antiquity there can be no doubt;8 though we may not be willing to admit that that occupation of Italy can be referred with certainty to the third generation before the Trojan war.9 Traditions of ages so long prior to the historic period must be too clouded by fable, or too distorted by the medium of their transmission, to be received as strictly authentic. In its early days Agylla seems to have maintained intercourse with Greece, which corroborates, if need be, the uniform tradition of its Pelasgic origin.10

 p22  It would appear that at its conquest by the Etruscans its name was changed into Caere, but the reason of this alteration we know not, unless we choose to attach credit to the old legend, which tells us that when the Lydian or Etruscan colonists were about to attack the city, they hailed it and inquired its name; whereon, a soldier from the ramparts, not understanding their motives or language, replied with a salutation — χαῖρε — "hail!" which they receiving as a good omen, on the capture of the city applied to it as its name.11 But this, like most of the etymologies of the ancients, savours strongly of, what Pliny terms, the perversa subtilitas of the grammarians.

In the time of Aeneas, the city is represented by Virgil as under the sway of Mezentius, a cruel and impious tyrant, who was expelled by his subjects and fled to Turnus, king of the Rutuli; while the liberated Agyllans joined the ranks of the Trojan prince.12

In very early times, Caere is said to have cultivated the arts; for Pliny asserts, that in his day paintings were here extant, which had been executed before the foundation of Rome; and he cites them as examples of the rapid progress this art had made, seeing that it appeared not to have been practised in the days of Troy.13 Caere, even as early  p23 as the time of first Tarquin, is represented as among the most flourishing and populous cities of Etruria;14 and she was undoubtedly one of the Twelve of the Confederation.15 But what, above all, distinguished Caere was, that she alone, of all the cities of Etruria, abstained from piracy, from no inferiority of power or natural advantages, but solely from her sense of justice; wherefore the Greeks greatly honoured her for her moral courage in resisting this temptation.16

The first mention of this city in Roman history is, that it maintained a war with Tarquinius Priscus.17 It also joined Veii and Tarquinii in the twenty years' war with his successor, Servius Tullius, and at the re-establishment of peace, in consequence of the prominent part it had taken, it was punished by the Roman monarch with the forfeiture of a portion of its territory.18

At the same period, or about the year of Rome 220 (534 B.C.), the Caerites joined their fleet with that of Carthage on an expedition against a colony of Phocaeans, who had seized on Alalia in Corsica, and after a severe combat, all the prisoners taken by the allies were brought to Caere and there stoned to death. In consequence of this cold-blooded massacre, the city was punished with a plague; men, herds, and flocks — whatever animal passed near the spot where the bodies of the Phocaeans lay, became afflicted the distortion, mutilation, or paralysis; whereon the Caerites sent to Delphi to consult the oracle how they might atone for their crime, and were ordered to perform solemn expiatory rites, and to institute games of gymnastic  p24 exercises and horse-racing in honour of the slain; which they continued to observe in the time of Herodotus.19

On the expulsion of Tarquinius Superbus from Rome, he and his two sons took refuge in Caere,20 probably on account of his family connections there; but it is not recorded that this city took part in Porsenna's expedition to reinstate the exiled prince. Unlike Veii, Fidenae, Falerii, and other cities in this part of Etruria, Caere, though but twenty-seven miles from Rome, seems to have been for ages on friendly terms with that city.21 When, in the year 365, Rome was attacked by the Gauls, Caere opened her gates and gave refuge to the Flamen Quirinalis, and Vestal Virgins, and eventually restored them in safety to their home.22 Nay, we are told that the Caerites attacked the retreating Gauls, laden with the spoil of Rome, routed them, and recovered all the booty they were bearing away.23 For these services the senate decreed that the Caerites should receive the hospitium publicum, or be admitted into the most intimate relations with the Roman people24 — in fact, they received the full privileges of Roman citizens, save the suffrage.25 The origin of our  p25 word ceremonycaerimonia — has been ascribed to this event.26

A year or two before the capture of Rome by the Gauls, Caere was engaged with another enemy, Dionysius, the tyrant of Syracuse, who, in 362, attacked Pyrgi, and spoiled its celebrated temple of Ilithiya.º As this was the port of Caere, the inhabitants of the latter city rushed to the rescue, but, being probably unprepared for war, not expecting an attack, they were easily routed by the Sicilians.27

Caere, though closely allied to Rome, continued to maintain her independence; but it is probable that this was threatened, otherwise "the sympathy of blood" alone would hardly have induced her, in the year 401 (B.C. 353), to take up arms to assist Tarquinii against Rome, when she had been for ages intimately associated with the Republic. She must have received some provocation when she sent an army into Roman territory, and laid it waste up to the mouth of the Tiber. Ere long, however, conscious of her unequal strength, she repented of this step, and besought pardon and peace, reminding the Romans of the services she had rendered in their distress. The senate referred her ambassadors to the people, who, moved by their touching appeal and the remembrance of past services,  p26 rather than by the excuse then urged, listened to their prayer and granted them a truce for a hundred years.28 It is highly probable that the Caerites paid the penalty of their error by the loss of their independence, for we have no record of any further conquest of them by the Romans; indeed, we next hear of Caere as a Roman dependency, providing cornº and other provisions for the fleet of Scipio, in the year 549,29 and otherwise assisting in the Second Punic War.30

At the commencement of the Empire this "splendid and illustrious city" had sunk into utter insignificance, retaining mere vestiges of past greatness, being even surpassed in population by the Thermae Caeretanae — the hot baths in the neighbourhood, which the Romans frequented for health's sake.31 It again revived, however, as appears from monuments and inscriptions found on the spot, and became a municipium.32 Nor was it at any period wholly blotted  p27 from the map, but continued to exist, and with its ancient name, till, at the beginning of the thirteenth century, part of its inhabitants removed to a site about three miles off, on which they bestowed the same name, and the old town was distinguished by the title of Vetus, or Caere Vetere, which has been corrupted into its present appellation of Cervetri, the new town still retaining the name of Ceri. This has misled antiquarians, who have sought the Etruscan city on the site which seemed more clearly to bear its name,33 but inscriptions recently found at Cervetri have established its identity with Caere beyond a doubt.34

Of the ancient city there are but few vestiges extant; yet the outline of its walls is clearly defined, not so much by fragments, for there are few remaining, as by the character of the ground which the city occupied. This is a height or table-land, rising in steep cliffs above the plain of the coast, except on the northern side where it is united by a neck to the high land adjoining. Within the space thus marked off by nature, not a ruin of the ancient city now rises above ground. Temples, towers, halls, palaces, theatres — have all gone to dust; the very ruins of Caere have perished, or are overheaped with soil; and the  p29 peasant follows his plough, the husbandman dresses his vines, and the shepherd tends his flock, unconscious that he is treading over the streets and buildings of a city among the most renowned of ancient times, the thirty times more extensive than the miserable village which has preserved its name.

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Thayer Note: My color-coding.
Only the places shown in red are mentioned in the text, and linked of course.

Let not the traveller omit to visit the site of Caere under the impression that there is nothing to be seen. If of antiquarian tastes, he will have the satisfaction of determining the extent, form, and position of the city, — he will perceive that it was four or five miles in circuit, and therefore fully substantiating its claim to be ranked among the first of Etruria, — that it was of oblong form, — that it had eight gates, all most distinctly traceable, some approached by roads sunk in the rock and lined with tombs, others retaining their flanking walls of masonry, — he will see in the cliffs around the city, the mouths of sewers above, and more frequently tombs of various forms below; and he will learn from the few fragments that remain, that the walls of Caere were composed of rectangular blocks of tufo, of similar size and arrangement to those in the walls of Veii and Tarquinii, and utterly different from those of Pyrgi, which had a common origin.35

 p30  If he be an artist, or lover of the picturesque, taking no interest in the antiquities of the place, he will still find abundance of matter to delight his eye or employ his pencil; either on the site of the city itself, with its wide-sweeping prospect of plain and sea on the one hand, and of the dark many-peaked hills on the other, or in the ravines around, where he will meet with combinations of rock and wood, such as for form and colour are rarely surpassed. The cliffs of the city, here rising boldly at one spring from the slope, there broken away into many angular forms, with huge masses of rock scattered at their feet, are naturally of the liveliest red that tufo can assume, yet are brightened still further by encrusting lichens into the warmest orange or amber, or are gilt with the most brilliant yellow — thrown out more prominently by an occasional sombring of grey — while the dark ilex, or oak, feathers and crests the whole,

"And overhead the wandering ivy and vine

This way and that, in many a wild festoon,

Run riot, garlanding the gnarled boughs

With bunch and berry and flower."

The chief interest of Caere, however, lies in its tombs.  p31 These are found on all sides of the city, but particularly on the high ground to the north, now called La Banditaccia.b Let not the traveller conceive vain fears from a name of ominous a sound, and which, his Guide-book will tell him, was derived from the number of bandits who once infested the spot.36 The name is simply indicative of the proprietorship of the land, which once belonging to the comune, or corporation of Cervetri, was terra abdita — "set apart;" and, as it was uncultivated and broken ground, the termination descriptive of its ugliness was added — banditaccia. It retains the name, though it has passed into the hands of Prince Ruspoli. To reach it from Cervetri, you cross the narrow glen to the north. Here in the cliffs opposite is hollowed a long range of sepulchres, all greatly injured within and without.37

[image ALT: Plan of the Tomba della Sedia, an Etruscan tomb at Cerveteri (Lazio, central Italy).]

This Banditaccia is a singular place — a Brobdignag warren, studded with mole-hills. It confirmed the impression I had received at Bieda and other sites, that the cemeteries of the Etruscans were often intentional representations of their cities. Here were ranges of tombs hollowed in low cliffs, rarely more than fifteen feet high, not piled one on another as at Bieda, but on the same level, facing each other as in streets, and sometimes branching off laterally into smaller lanes or alleys. In one part was a spacious square or piazza, surrounded by tombs instead of houses. None of these sepulchres, it is true, had architectural façades remaining, but the cliffs were hewn into smooth, upright faces, and here and there  p32 were fragments of an ornamental cornice. Within the tombs the analogy was preserved. Many had a large central chamber, with others of smaller size opening upon it, lighted by windows in the wall of rock, which served as the partition. (See the annexed woodcut.38) This central chamber represented the atrium of Etruscan houses,39 whence it was borrowed by the Romans; and the chambers around it the triclinia, for each had a bench of rock round three of its sides, on which the dead had lain, reclining in effigy, as at a banquet. The ceilings of all the chambers had the usual beams and rafters hewn in  p33 the rock; and in one instance was the same fan-like ornament in relief, and walls similarly panelled, as in a tomb at Vulci;40 whence it may be inferred that such decorations were at one period fashionable in Etruscan houses.

Many of the tombs of the Banditaccia are surmounted by tumuli. Indeed tumuli are scarcely less numerous here than at Tarquinii. Some of them are still unexcavated, the entrance being below the surface; in others the doorway opens in the basement, which is often of rock, hewn into mouldings and cornices, and more rarely of masonry. The cone of earth which originally surmounted these tumuli is in most cases broken down almost to the level of the soil. As at Tarquinii, there are no architectural façades in this necropolis; the decoration is chiefly internal. Nor could I perceive more than a single instance of inscriptions on the exterior of tombs; and that was no longer legible.

Some tombs of great interest were opened on this spot in the winter of 1845‑6. The first you reach is a large tomb, with two square pillars in the centre, and a row of long niches for bodies recessed in the walls; beside which the chamber is surrounded by a deep bench, separated into compartments for corpses, which were arranged, not in lines parallel with the niches, but at right angles, with their feet pointing to the centre of the tomb. There is nothing further remarkable in this sepulchre beyond an Etruscan word — CVETHN — cut in the rock over one of the corner recesses.41

 p34  Grotta della Sedia.

Hard by is a sepulchre, on the plan of those of Bieda, with two small chambers, separated by a wall of rock, in which are cut a door and two little windows, surrounded by the usual rod-moulding. But the marvel of the tomb is an arm-chair, cut from the living rock, standing by the side of one of the two sepulchral couches in the outer chamber, as though it were an easy-chair by the bed-side, or as a seat for the doctor visiting his patient! But why placed in a tomb? Was it merely to carry out still further the analogy to a house? Or was it, as Visconti suggests, for the use of the relatives who came yearly to hold solemn festivals at the tomb?42 Or was it for the shade of the deceased himself, as though he were too restless to be satisfied with his banqueting-couch, but must have his easy-chair also to repose him after his wanderings.43 Or, as Micali opines, was it to intimate the blissful repose of the new life on which his spirit had entered.44 Or was it not rather a curule chair, the insigne of the rank or condition of the deceased, showing him to have been a ruler or magnate in the land?45

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Some eighteen or twenty years since a tomb was opened in the Banditaccia, which contained two of these chairs, each with a foot-stool attached, a shield suspended  p35 against the wall above it, all carved in the living rock. The annexed woodcut, which gives a section of the tomb, shows the seats, placed between the doors of inner chambers.46 The tomb is still open, but my endeavours to discover it among the thousand and one sepulchres of the Banditaccia have proved fruitless.47

At the further side of the Banditaccia is a group of four other recently-discovered tombs, which have been placed under lock and key by the Cavaliere Campana. One of these, opened in the spring of 1846, is a painted tomb — which I shal designate

Grotta della Triclinio.

It consists of but a single chamber, twenty-four feet by sixteen, surrounded by deep benches of rock, on which the dead were laid, and at the head of each compartment still lies a skull, whose uniform for instance startles the eye on entering the sepulchre. Just within the door are bas-reliefs — a wild-boar on one side, and a panther tearing its prey on the other. But the paintings? — It requires a close and careful examination to distinguish them, so much have  p36 they suffered from the damp; and if unaware of their existence, you might visit the tomb without perceiving the figures on its walls. The white stucco on which the scenes are painted has been changed by the damp to a hue dark as the native rock. In a few places only where it has remained dry has the painting retained its distinctness. On the left-hand wall you perceive the heads of a man and woman, who are reclining together at a banquet; and beautiful heads they are, with features of Greek symmetry, and more mastery and delicacy in the design than are commonly found in the sepulchral paintings of Etruria. He is garlanded with laurel and wears a short beard; and his flesh is of the usual deep red, the conventional colour of beatification — of gods and heroes; but heres is of the white hue of the stucco. He pledges her in a phiale, or bowl of wine, to which she replies by an approving look, turning her head towards him. Her face and expression are extremely pretty, and a variegated skull-cap, and a full rich tress at the side of her face add to her charms. She wears also a necklace and torque of gold. A round table, resting on three deer-legs, stands by them, with meats, fruits, eggs, and goblets; and a large round shield is suspended on the wall behind the man. You might fancy it Pericles, who had just laid his armour by, and was pledging the fair Aspasia.

A maraviglia ogli gagliardo, ed ella

Quanto si possa dir, leggiadra e bella.

It is from these heads we must judge of the rest in this tomb; for the same scene is repeated again and again on the walls — eight other couples recline on the festive couch, each with a tripod-table by their side, and a shield suspended above.48 But the females have lost the fairness of  p37 their sex, and, from the discoloration of the stucco, have become as dusky as negresses; while the men, from their brick-dust complexions, are much more distinct. In the centre of the inner wall stand a couple of slaves, at a large table or sideboard, which has sundry vases and goblets on it and beneath it, and a tall candelabrum at its side, the counterpart to which is seen also on the side-wall.49 On a mixing-vase which stands on this table or sideboard is inscribed the word IVNON in Roman letters, which, as it can hardly here alluded to the "white-armed," "ox-eyed" goddess, milestone refer to the Juno, or presiding spirit of some female,50 probably the principal person interred in the tomb.

The face of the sepulchral couches is also painted above, with the usual wave-pattern — below, with animals, of which a pair of winged hippocampi, in a very spirited style, and a dragon with green wings, are alone discernible.51

 p38  The colours in this tomb have been laid on in distemper, not al fresco. The freedom of the design, as far as it is discernible, the Greek character of the features, and the full faces of some of the males, are clear proofs of a late date — a date subsequent rather than prior to the period of Roman domination; and this is confirmed by the presence of the Latin inscription.52

A painted tomb at Cervetri has peculiar interest, for this is the only site in Etruria where we have historical record of the existence of ancient paintings. Pliny speaks of some extant in his day, which were vulgarly believed to have been executed prior to the foundation of Rome.53 Those in this tomb can scarcely claim to a purely Etruscan antiquity. Another sepulchre, however, was discovered some twenty years since, which contained figures of men and animals in a very archaic style, bearing in their singular parti-coloured character much resemblance to those in the Grotta Campana at Veii.54 The tomb is still open, but when last at Cervetri I could find no one who was acquainted with its site.55

 p39  Grotta de' Sarcofagi.

Close to the last is a sepulchre which I shall designate the Tomb of the Sarcophagi, from its containing three of those large monuments, which are very rarely found at Caere, the dead being in general laid out on their rocky biers, without other covering than their robes or armour. The sarcophagi are here of alabaster — not that from Volterra, but another kind from the Circeian Promontory.56 Two have the draped figure of a man on the lid, not resting, as usual, on his elbow, but reclining on his left side. They are in a very archaic style. The hair of one is arranged in the small stiff curls which are seen in the most ancient Etruscan bronzes, as well as in the early monuments of the East, and are shown in the reliefs from Nineveh, recently brought to this country. The same figure wears a chaplet of leaves, and holds a patera, and he has two small lions of the most quaint and primitive art at his feet. His eyes are painted black, and his lips red; but the rest of the monument is uncoloured. The other figure is remarkable for his fine features; and with mustachios, and a torque around his neck, he much resembles a Gaul. He has four similar lions on his couch, one at each angle. There is a peculiarly primitive air about these figures; they are unlike any I have elsewhere seen on the lids of sarcophagi, where, in truth, they have generally nothing archaic in character.

The third sarcophagus is of temple-form, like that from Bomarzo, now in the British Museum, but without sculptured decorations.

On the wall of this tomb is scratched an Etruscan inscription, which in Rome lets would be V : APUCUS : AC.  p40 and on a slab which served as a cippus, I read LARTHI AP. VCUIA, in Etruscan characters. Thence it appears that the sepulchre was that of a family named Apucus (Apicius?).

The front of the couches is painted with sea-monsters, dolphins, lions, and other animals, on a stuccoed surface; and on the inner wall of the tomb is a band of the usual wave-pattern.

Grotta dell' Alcova.

Another of these newly discovered sepulchres, I shal call the "Tomb of the Alcove," from a singular, recessed chamber in the further wall, like a chapel in a cathedral. There are in fact three of these recesses, but the central one is the most spacious, and is obviously the post of honour, the last resting-place of the most illustrious dead here interred. In it is a massive sepulchral couch, with a cushion and pillows at its head, ornamented legs in relief, and a low stool, or scamnum in front — all hewn from the living rock. It may represent a thalamus or nuptial-couch, rather than the usual festive κλίνη or lectus, for it is double, and must have been occupied by some noble Etruscan and his wife, whose skulls still serve as a memento mori to the visitor, though a confused heap of dust on the couch is all that is left of their bodies and integuments.

This tomb bears a striking resemblance to a temple — in its spaciousness — in its division into three aisles by the pillars and pilasters which support the rafter-carved roof — in the dark shrine at the upper end, like the cella of the god, raised on a flight of steps — and in the altar-like mass of the couch within. Nor are the many large amphorae which strew the floor, unpriestly furniture; though they seem to hint at copious libations to a certain jolly god, poured forth on the occasion of the annual sepulchral festivals.

 p41  But this tomb has other features of interest. The two fluted pillars which support the roof, and the pilasters against the inner wall, present specimens of capitals and mouldings of a peculiar character, and through light on that little-understood subject — the architecture of the Etruscans. Caere, indeed, is particularly rich in this respect — more so than any other Etruscan site. Most of the newly-found tombs have singular or beautiful architectural features; and others of the same character are now lost sight of, or reclosed with earth; one in particular, from its spaciousness and the abundance of such decoration, had acquired the name of Il Palazzo. Of the students of ancient architecture who yearly flock to Rome, none should omit to visit the tombs of Cervetri — and none would regret it.57

The last tomb I have to describe of those recently opened in the Banditaccia, is the most interesting of all. In truth it is by far the most interesting that has been found in this necropolis, since the discovery of the celebrated Grotta Regulini-Galassi. It must be called

Grotta de' Tarquinj.

or, the "Tomb of the Tarquins!" Yes, reader — here for the first time in Etruria has a sepulchre of that celebrated family been discovered. The name had been met with, a few times, on urns, and funeral furniture,58 but never in any  p42 abundance. Nor are we yet assured that it was a common name in Etruria. We only know that there must have been a numerous family of Tarquins settle at Caere. But can this have been of the same race as the celebrated dynasty of Rome? Nothing more probable. We know that when the royal family was expelled, the king and two of his sons, Titus and Aruns, took refuge at Caere; Sextus, the elder —

"The false Tarquin

Who wrought the deed of shame," —

retiring to Gabii, where he was soon after slain.59 What more likely then than that the family here interred was descended in a direct line from the last of the Roman kings? Though Aruns, one of the princes, was slain soon after in single combat with the consul Brutus, at the Arsian Wood,60 he may have left his family at Caere, and his father and brother still survived to perpetuate the name of Tarquin.61 However it be, let the visitor to this sepulchre  p43 bear in mind the possibility, to say the least, that the skulls he handles, and the dust he gazes on, may be those of that proud race, whose tyranny cost them a crown — perhaps the Empire of the World.

The first chamber you enter is surrounded by benches of rock, and contains nothing of interest; but in the floor opens a long flight of steps, which lead down, not directly, but by a bend at right angles, to a lower chamber of much larger size.62 It is called by the peasantry the "Tomb of the Inscriptions," and well does it merit the name; for it has not merely a single lengthy legend, as on the pillar of the Pompey-Tomb at Corneto, nor a name here and there, as in the Grotta delle Iscrizioni of the same place; but the tomb is vocal with epigraphs — every niche, every bench, every portion of the walls speaks Etruscan, and echoes the name of Tarquin.

This chamber is a square, or nearly so, of thirty-five feet, with two massive pillars in the centre, and a row of long recesses for corpses, in the walls; while below is a double tier of rock-hewn benches, which also served as biers for the dead.63 The walls, niches, benches, and pillars, are all stuccoed, and the inscriptions are painted in red or black, or in some instances merely marked with the finger on the damp stucco. Observe these scratched epigraphs. They are remarkable for the wonderful freshness of the impression. The stucco or mortar has hardened in prominent ridges precisely as it was displaced; and you might suppose the inscription had been written but one day,  p44 instead of more than two thousand years. No finger, not even the effacing one of Time, has touched it, since that of the Etruscan, who so many centuries ago recorded the name of his just departed friend.

Were I to insert all the inscriptions of this tomb, I should heartily weary the reader.64 Let one suffice to show the Etruscan form of the name of Tarquin,

[image ALT: zzz]

Which in Roman letters would be


The name, either in Etruscan or Latin,65 occurs no fewer than thirty-five times! How much oftener it was repeated, in parts where the paint has run or faded, or the inscriptions have become otherwise illegible, I cannot say, but should think that not less than fifty epigraphs with this name must have been originally inscribed on this tomb. One fact I noticed, which seems to strengthen the probability that this family was of the royal race — namely, that it appears to have kept itself in great measure distinct by intermarriages, and to have mingled little with other Etruscan families — at least when compared with similar tombs, those of Perugia for instance, this sepulchre will be found to contain very few other family-names introduced in the epitaphs as matronymics.66

 p45  Most of the niches are double, or for two bodies. Some, beside inscriptions, have painted decorations — a wreath, for instance, on one side, and some crotala, or castanets, on the other, or a wreath, and a small pot of alabastron, represented as if suspended above the corpse. Between the niches are elegant pilasters, and in front are the legs of couches, and the usual long, paw-footed stools, all painted on the stucco, to make each mortuary bed resemble a festive-couch. On one of the square pillars which support this beamed roof, is painted a large round shield. In the ceiling between the pillars is a shaft cut through the rock, from the plain above.67

Like most of the tombs of the Banditaccia, which are below the surface, this was half full of water. At the expense of wet feet, we contrived to examine them all; but after heavy rains, a visit to Caere would, to many, prove fruitless. One tomb was completely reclosed with earth washed down from above, so that we were obliged to have it re-excavated for our especial inspection.

Grotta Regulini-Galassi.

The sepulchre at Cervetri which has most renown, and the greatest interest from its high antiquity, the peculiarity of its structure, and the extraordinary nature and value of its contents, is that called after its discoverers — the archpriest Regulini, and General Galassi. This is one of the very few virgin-tombs, found in Etruscan cemeteries. It was opened in April 1836. It lies about three furlongs from Cervetri, to the south-west of the ancient city, and not far from the  p46 walls. It is said to have been inclosed in a tumulus, but the mound was so large, and its top has been so broken by frequent excavations, and levellings of the soil for agricultural purposes, that its existence is now mere matter of history.

[image ALT: zzz]

The sepulchre opens in a low bank in the middle of a field. The peculiarity of its construction is evident at a glance. It is a rude attempt at an arch, formed by the convergence of horizontal strata, hewn to a smooth surface, and slightly curved, so as to resemble a Gothic arch. This is not, however, carried up to a point, but terminates in a square channel, covered by a large block of nenfro. The doorway is the index to the whole tomb, which is a mere passage, about sixty feet long, constructed on the same principle, and lined with masonry.68 This passage is divided into two parts or channels, communicating with a doorway of the same Gothic form, with a truncated top.69

 p47  The similarity of the structure to the Cyclopean gallery at Tiryns is striking; the masonry, it is true, is far less massive, but the style is identical, showing a rude attempt at an arch, the true principle of which had yet to be discovered. It is generally admitted, not only that such a mode of construction must be prior to the discovery of the perfect arch, but that every extant specimen of it must have preceded the knowledge of the correct principle. It is a mode not peculiar to one race, or to one age, or the result of a particular class of materials, but is the expedient naturally adopted in the formation of arches, vaults, and domes, by those who are ignorant of the cuneiform principle; and it is therefore to be found in the earliest structures of Egypt, Greece, Italy, and other parts of the Old World, as well as in those of the semi-civilised races of the New.70 The Cloaca Maxima, which is the earliest known instance of the perfect arch in Italy, dates from the days of the Tarquins; this tomb must then be considered as of a remoter period, coeval at least with the earliest days of Rome — prior, it may be, to the foundation of the City.71

 p48  The great antiquity of this tomb may be deduced also from its contents, which were of the most archaic, Egyptian-like character.72 Scarcely any pottery, and none figured, was found here; but numerous articles of bronze, silver, and gold, so abundant, so singular, and so beautiful, that it is verily no easy task to describe them. I shall here do little more than specify the position which they occupied in the tomb.

In the outer chamber, at the further end, lay a bier of bronze, formed of narrow cross-bars, with an elevated place for the head.73 The corpse which had lain on it, had long since fallen to dust. But its side stood a small four-wheeled car, or tray, of bronze, with a basin-like cavity in the centre, the whole bearing, in form and size, a strong resemblance to a dripping-pan; though ornamented in a way that would hardly become that homely instrument.  p49 On the other side of the bier lay some thirty or forty little earthenware figures; probably the Lares of the deceased, who had not selected his divinities for their beauty. At the head and foot of the bier stood a small iron altar on a tripod, which may have served to do homage to these household gods. At the foot of the bier also lay a bundle of darts, and a shield; and several more shields rested against the opposite wall. All were of bronze, large and round like the Greek ἀσπὶς, and beautifully embossed, but apparently for ornament alone, as the metal was too thin to have been of service in the field. Nearer the door stood a four-wheeled car, which, from its size and form, seemed to have borne the bier to the sepulchre. And just within the entrance stood, on iron tripods, a couple of cauldrons, with a number of curious handles terminating in griffons' heads, together with a singular vessel — a pair of bell-shaped vases, united by a couple of spheres.74 Besides these articles of bronze, there was a series of vessels suspended by bronze nails from each side of the recess in the roof.75 The cauldrons, dripping-pan, and bell-vessel, are supposed to have contained perfumes, or incense, for fumigating the sepulchre.

This tomb had evidently contained the body of a warrior; but to whom had the inner chamber belonged? The intervening doorway was closed with masonry to half its height, and in it stood two more pots of bronze, and  p50 against each door-post hung a vessel of pure silver. There were no urns in this chamber, but the vault was hung with bronze vessels, and others were suspended on each side the entrance. Further in, stood two bronze cauldrons for perfumes, as in the outer chamber: and then, at the end of the tomb, on no couch, bier, or sarcophagus, not even on a rude bench of rock, but on the bare ground,76 lay — a corpse? — no, for it had ages since returned to dust, but a number of gold ornaments, whose position showed most clearly that, when placed in the tomb, they were upon a human body. The richness, beauty, and abundance of these articles, all of pure gold, were amazing — such a collection, it has been said, "would not be found in the shop of a well-furnished goldsmith."77 There were, a head-dress of singular character — a large breastplate, beautifully embossed, such as was worn by Egyptian priests — a finely twisted chain, and a necklace of very long joints — earrings of great length — a pair of massive bracelets of exquisite filagree-work — no less than eighteen fibulae or brooches, one of remarkable size and beauty — sundry rings, and fragments of gold fringes and laminae, in such quantities, that there seemed to have been an entire garment of pure gold. It is said that the fragments of this metal crushed and bruised, were alone sufficient to fill more than one basket.78 Against the inner wall lay two vessels of silver, with figures in relief.

This abundance of ornament has led to the conclusion that the occupant of this inner chamber was a female of  p51 rank — a view confirmed by the inscriptions found in the tomb.79 But may it not have been a priest with equal probability? The breastplate is far more like a sacerdotal than a feminine decoration; and the other ornaments, if worn by a man, would simply mark an oriental character,80 and would be consistent enough with the strong Egyptian style observable in many of the contents of this sepulchre.81

On each side of the outer passage was a small circular, domed chamber, hewn in the rock, one containing an urn  p52 with burnt bones, and a number of terra-cotta idols; the other, Pliny, and vessels of bronze. These chambers seem of later formation. Canina indeed is of opinion that the inner chamber alone was the original tomb; that the outer, then serving as a mere passage, was subsequently used as a burial place, and that, at a still later period, the side-chambers were constructed.82

All this roba, so rich and rare, has been religiously preserved, but he who would see it, must seek it, not on the spot where it had lain for so many centuries, but at the Gregorian Museum in Rome, of which it forms one of the chief glories. That revolving cabinet of jewellery, whose treasures of exquisite workmanship excite the enthusiastic admiration of all fair travellers, is occupied almost wholly with the produce of this tomb. The depositary which has yielded this wealth, now contains nought but mud, slime, and serpents — the genii of the spot. It has been gutted of its long-hoarded treasure, and may now take its fate. Who is there to give it a thought? None save the peasant, who will ere long find its blocks handy for the construction of his hovel, or the fence of his vineyard, as he has already found a quarry of materials in neighbouring tumuli; and the sepulchre, which may have greeted the eyes of Aeneas himself, will not leave a wreck behind. Much of the masonry of the inner chamber has been already removed, and the whole threatens a speedy fall. Surely a specimen of a most ancient and rare style of architecture, has public claims for protection, as well as the works of the early painters, or the figures of bronze, clay, or stone, which are preserved in museums as specimens of the infancy of their respective arts. Were its position such as to render it difficult to preserve, there would be some excuse for neglect,  p53 but when a wooden door with lock and key would effect its salvation, it is astonishing that it is suffered to fall into ruin.83

Another tomb, of precisely similar construction, was found near the one just described; but, having been rifled in past ages, it contained nothing but an inscription rudely scratched on the wall.84

At the same time with the Regulini-Galassi tomb, several others were opened in the neighbourhood; in one of which was found a relic of antiquity, insignificant enough in itself, but of high interest for the light it throws on the early languages of Italy. It is a little cruet-like vases, of plain black ware, a few inches high, and from its form has not unaptly been compared to an ink-bottle.85 What may have been its original application is not easy to say; probably for perfumes, as it resembles the alabastron in form; or it may have served, as an ink-stand, to hold the colouring-matter for inscriptions. Whatever its purpose, it has no obvious relation to a sepulchre, for round its base is an alphabet, in very ancient characters, shown in the bottom line of the subjoined fac-simile; and round the body of the pot the consonants are coupled with the vowels in turn, in that manner so captivating to budding intelligences. Thus we read — "Bi, Ba, Bu, Be — Gi, Ga, Gu, Ge — Zi, Za, Zu, Ze — Hi, Ha, Hu, He — Thi, Tha, Thu, The — Mi, Ma, Mu, Me — Ni, Na, Nu, Ne — Pi, Pa, Pu, Pe — Ki, Ka, Ku, Ke — Si, Sa, Su, Se — Chi, Cha, Chu, Che — Phi, Pha, Phu, Phe —  p54 Ti, Ta, Tu, Te." Now, it must be observed, that this inscription, though found in an Etruscan tomb, is not in that character, but in Greek, of very archaic style;86 and there is every reason to believe it a relic of the earliest possessors of Caere, the Pelasgi, who are said to have introduced letters into Latium.87 From the palaeography, this is indubitably the most ancient monument extant which  p55 teaches us the early Greek alphabet, and its authentic arrangement.88 This singular relic has now past from the hands of General Galassi, its original possessor, into the Gregorian Museum of the Vatican.

[image ALT: An engraving of an ancient Etruscan inscription at Cerveteri (Lazio, central Italy).]

Another small black pot, found by Gen. Galassi in the same excavations, has an inscription similarly scratched around it, and then filled in with red paint, which Professor Lepsius also determines to be in the Pelasgic, not the Etruscan, character and language. The letters are not separated into words, but run into a continuous line round the pot. Lepsius thus divides them —

Mi ni kethu ma mi mathu maram lisiai thipurenai
Ethe erai sie epana minethu nastav helephu,

and remarks that "he who is so inclined may easily read them as two hexameter lines, after the manner of the old Greek dedicatory inscriptions." Though he pronounces, that in this inscription we possess one of the very rare relics of the Pelasgic tongue, he regards the date of it as uncertain, as he conceives that the population of Caere remained Pelasgic to a late period.89

 p56  The high ground to the east of Caere, on the opposite side of the Vaccina, is called Monte Abatone. This, Canina90 regards as the site of the sacred grove of Silvanus, described by Virgil,91 and thinks that its name is derived from the fir-trees — abietes — which are said by that poet to have surrounded the grove.92 None, however, are now visible. Ceres has usurped the greater part of the hill, and has driven Pan to its further extremity.

The interest of Monte Abatone is not its doubtful claim to the site of a sylvan shrine, but its positive possession of tombs of very singular character. About a mile to the  p57 east of the Regulini sepulchre, after crossing the Vaccina, you find a path leading up to the southermost point of the Monte. Here, at the very edge of the cliff, facing the city, a tomb was opened in May, 1845, which may be seen with all its furniture, just as it was found. Flavio Passegiere keeps the key. The traveller is again indebted, for the conservation of this monument, to the good taste of the Cavaliere Campana — a gentleman, whose zealous exertions in the field of Etruscan research, and in the advancement of archaeological science in general, are too well recognised to require laudation from me. This tomb is, or should be, known by the name of

Grotta Campana.

[image ALT: Cross-sections of three complex moldings found in Etruscan tombs at Norchia, in Viterbo province (Lazio, central Italy).]

It bears considerable similarity to that of the same appellation at Veii — not so much in itself as in its contents. It lies beneath a crumbled tumulus, girt with masonry.93 There is but a single sepulchral chamber, but it is divided, by Doric-like pilasters, into three compartments. The first has a fan-like ornament in relief on its ceiling, just as exists in a tomb in the Banditaccia, and in another at Vulci,94 and which being here found in connection with very archaic furniture, raises a presumption in favour of its being a most ancient style of decoration. Just within the entrance, on one hand, is a large jar, resting on a stumpy column of tufo, which is curiously adorned with reliefs of stripes and stars, though not in the approved Transatlantic arrangement. In the opposite corner is a squared mass of  p58 rock, panelled like a piece of furniture, and supporting small black vessels. The second compartment of the tomb is occupied by two sepulchral couches, hewn from the rock, surrounded by sundry articles of crockery, and containing nothing of their occupants beyond some dark dust, mixed with fragments of metal, though their skulls are still left grinning at the heads of their respective biers. Between these couches, on a square mass of rock, retaining traces of colour, rests an earthen pan, or brazier, for perfumes, with archaic figures in relief round the rim; and at the foot of each stands a huge jar, almost large enough to hold a man, which probably contained the ashes of the slaves or dependents of those whose bodies occupied the couches. In the inner compartment, against the wall, are two benches of rock; on the upper, stand several similar jars, together with smaller vessels; and on the lower, is a curious, tall, bell-shaped pot, of black earthenware, similar in form to one of bronze found in the Grotta Regulini-Galassi. It was probably an incense-burner. It is shown in the annexed woodcut.

About a mile from the Grotta Campana, but still on the Monte Abatone, are two remarkable sepulchres, well worthy of a visit. They are not under lock and key, yet can scarcely be found without a guide. The spot is vulgarly called Il Monte d'Oro, from a tradition of gold having been found there. On the way to it, you may observe traces of a sepulchral road, flanked with many tumuli — some with architectural decorations. The tombs lie in a small copse, and are not easily accessible to ladies. To explore them, indeed, demands much of the sportsman's spirit in the ruder sex, for they are often half-full of water. The first is called the "Tomb of the Seat," —

 p59  Grotta della Sedia.

This tomb lies under a large tumulus, with a square basement of masonry, which makes it highly probable that the superincumbent mound was in this case of pyramidal form.95 Half-way down the passage which leads to the sepulchre, you pass through a doorway of masonry, which marks the line of the tumulus-basement. The passage is lined with masonry, whose converging courses indicate the existence originally of a vault overhead. The tomb consists of two chambers, and has nothing extraordinary, except an arm-chair, with a footstool attached, hewn out of the living rock, as in the two tombs of the Banditaccia, already described. Here it is not by the side of a sepulchral couch, but against the wall of rock which separates the two chambers.96

This tomb had been rifled in ages past, but very carelessly, for, when recently opened, some gold leaf, and several fibulae of the same metal were discovered in one of the chambers. Other furniture was also found, indicative of a high antiquity.97 A singular feature was the skeleton  p60 of a horse, lying by the bier of his master, and suggesting that he had been slain at the funeral obsequies.98

Grotta Torlonia.

The sepulchre under the adjoining tumulus has received its name from the proprietor of the land. The basement is here of the usual circular form.99 The entrance to this tomb is its most singular feature. At a considerable distance a level passage opens in the hill-side, and turns partly underground towards the tumulus, till it terminates in a vestibule, now open to the sky, and communicating with the ground above, by two flights of steps. The inner part of this vestibule is recessed in the rock, like the upper chambers of the tombs of Castel d'Asso; for there is a similar, moulded door in the centre, and on either hand are benches of rock, which, being too narrow for sarcophagi, suggest that this chamber was formed for the funeral rites — probably for the banquet, and generally for the convenience of the relatives of the deceased in their periodical visits to the tomb. This chamber is decorated with rock-hewn pilasters of Doric proportions, but with peculiar capitals, and bases somewhat allied to the Tuscan.

In the floor of this vestibules opens another flight of steps leading down to the sepulchre.100 There is an ante-chamber  p61 at the entrance, which opens into a spacious hall, having three compartments, like chapels or stalls, on either hand, decorated with Tuscan pilasters, and a chamber also at the upper end, which, being the post of honour, was elevated, and approached by a flight of steps. Each chamber contained several sepulchral couches, altogether fifty-four in number. At the moment of opening the tomb, these were all laden with their dead, but in a little while, after the admission of the atmosphere, the bodies crumbled to dust and vanished, like Avvolta's Etruscan warrior at Corneto, leaving scarcely a vestige of their existence.101 The external grandeur of this tomb augured a rich harvest to the excavator, but it had already been stript of its furniture — not a piece of pottery was to be seen — so completely had it been rifled by plunderers of old.102

In that part of the necropolis, called Zambra, which lies on the west of Cervetri, towards Pyrgi, some very ancient  p62 tombs were opened in 1842. In construction they were very like the Grotta Regulini-Galassi, being long passages similarly walled and roofed in with masonry, and lying beneath large tumuli of earth, and their furniture betrayed a corresponding antiquity.103

It is worthy of remark that though sepulchres are found on every side of Caere, those towards the sea are generally the most ancient.104

The ancient pottery of Caere is in keeping with the archaic, Egyptian character of the rest of the sepulchral furniture. The large, fluted, or fantastically moulded cinerary jars, of red or black ware, with figures of centaurs, sphinxes, and chimaeras in flat relief, resemble those of Veii; and so the rest of her early unpainted pottery, which Lepsius takes to be Pelasgic rather than Etruscan.105 The  p63 most ancient painted vases are also found on this site, not only those of the so‑called Egyptian or Phoenician style, but others of a much rare class and peculiarly Doric character, resembling the ancient Corinthian pottery, as we know it through the celebrated Dodwell vase, and others from Greece and her islands.106 Though the pottery of Caere is generally of a more archaic character than that of Vulci or Tarquinii; yet beautiful vases of the later, or Greek, styles have also been found here.107

Between Caere and Veii, and in the territory of the former city, lay a very ancient Etruscan town, called Artena, which was destroyed by the Roman kings. Speculations have been raised as to its site, but it will probably always remain a matter of mere conjecture.108  p64 


Note I. — Shields as Sepulchral Decorations.

The shields carved or painted in this and other tombs of Caere, probably mark them as the sepulchres of warriors, and are only a more permanent mode of indicating what is expressed by the suspension of the actual bucklers. This was a Greek as well as Etruscan custom. The ancient pyramid between Argos and Epidaurus, mentioned by Pausanias, contained the shields of the slain there interred. Paus. II.25. The analogous use of them as external decorations of sepulchres by the people of Asia Minor and by the Etruscans, has already been pointed out. Vol. I p252. The shield was a favourite anathema with the ancients, who were wont, at the conclusion of a war, to suspend their own bucklers or those of their vanquished foes in the temples of their gods — a very early and oriental custom, for David dedicated to God the gold shields he had captured from the men of Zobah. 2 Sam. viii. 7, 11. Croesus the Lydian offered a gold shield to Minerva Pronoea, to be seen at Delphi in the time of Herodotus (I.92; cf. Paus. X.8), and sent another to Amphiaraus, which was preserved in the temple of Apollo at Thebes. Herod. I.5292. After the battle of Marathon, the Athenians dedicated their shields to the Delphic Apollo, and fixed them to the entablature of his temple. Paus. X.19. And traces of shields in the same position may still be observed on the eastern front of the Parthenon — one under each triglyph, with the marks also of the bronze letters of the inscriptions which alternated with them. The Roman conquerors of Corinth suspended a number of gilt shields on the entablature of the temple of Jupiter Olympius; and in the pediment of the same building was a golden shield, also a dedicatory gift (Paus. V.10); and so shields have been found carved in the pediments of the rock-hewn, temple-like, tombs of Phrygia. See Steuart's Lydia and Phrygia. Shields may sometimes have been symbols of protection received from the gods, and thus acknowledged; but were often, like anathemata in general, mere emblems of the profession of those who dedicated them; as was the case with the twenty-five shields of the armed runners in the Olympic stadium. Paus. V.12. Sometimes they seem to have served merely decorative purposes, as when Solomon adorned his palace with five hundred gold targets (1 Kings, x. 16, 17); or as when, in Asia Minor, they were  p65 carved on city-walls, and the proscenia of theatres. And they were a conventional decoration also with the Romans, who emblazoned them with the portraits of their ancestors, and suspended them in temples or in their own houses. Plin. XXXV.3, 4. The use of shields, however, as fields for personal devices, is as old as the War of the Seven against Thebes, if we may believe Aeschylus; and for family emblems is also very ancient, for Virgil (Aen. VII.657), introduces one of his early Italian heroes with a formidable escutcheon —

Pulcher Aventinus, clypeoque insigne paternum,

Centum angues, cinctamque gerit serpentibus Hydram.

The shields borne by the figures of Minerva on the Panathenaic vases are said to contain the devices of the Italian cities. Bull. Inst. 1843, p75. We must look beyond the days of chivalry for the origin of armorial bearings, and for their blazonment on shields. For an ingenious theory of the Egyptian origin of heraldry, see Mr. Wathen's most interesting work on "Ancient Egypt," pp20 et seq.

Note II. — Genii and Junones.

The spirits which were believed by the Romans to attend and protect human beings through life, were supposed to be of the same sex as their individual charge; the males being called Genii, the females Junones. Tibul. IV.6, 1; Seneca, epist. 110. Such spirits were supposed not only to have presided over, but to have been the cause of birth, which is in fact implied in the name — Genius, a genendo (Festus, v. Geniales; Censorinus, de Die Natali, III.); and hence the nuptial couch was called lectus genialis, and was sacred to the Genius. Fest. s.v.; Serv. ad Virg. Aen. VI.603. Some assert that every man at his birth, or rather at his conception, had two Genii allotted to him, to attend him through life — one inciting him to good dees, the other to evil — and whose office it was also after death to attend him to the presence of the infernal judges, to confirm or refute his pleadings, according to their truth or falsehood: so that he might be raised to a better state of existence, or degraded to a lower. Serv. ad Virg. Aen. VI.743; cf. III.63; Euclid. Socrat. ap. Censorin. III. A similar doctrine of protecting and attendant spirits was held by the kings, who called them daemons — δαίμονες — and believed them to be allotted to men at their birth, as guardians, always present, and cognizant not only of deeds but of thoughts, and commissioned also to accompany them to the other world. Plato, Phaedo, pp107, 108, ed. Steph., and ap. Apuleium, de Deo Socrat. p48, ed. 1625; cf. Hesiod. Opera et Dies, I.121 et seq.; Pind. Olymp. XIII.

 p66  Genii were distinguished from the Manes and Lares, inasmuch as these were the deified spirits of the dead, but the Genii were the offspring of the great gods (Fest. vv. Genium, Tages), and the givers of life itself, wherefore they were called Dii Genitales. This distinction, however, was not always preserved, for the Genii were sometimes confounded with the Manes and Lares, and supposed, after the death of their charge, to dwell in his sepulchre. Serv. ad Aen. III.63; Censorin. loc. cit.; cf. Plin. II.5.

A man was believed to be born under the influence of a favourable or unlucky Genius (Pers. IV.27 — genio sinistro); and the Genius or Juno, as the case might be, was also supposed to be pleased or offended with the actions of the individual. Thus Quartilla, in Petronius (cap. 25), exclaims, "Junonem meam iratam habeam, si unquam," &c. And if a man restrained his passions and appetites, he was thought to "defraud his Genius," or if he gave way to them, to "indulge his Genius." Persius, V.151; Serv. ad Virg. Georg. I.302; Terent. ap. eund.

As the Genius was a god he received divine honours, especially on the birthday of the individual, when he was propitiated by libations, and offerings of flowers (Horat. Ep. II.1, 144; Tibul. II.7, 50; IV.5, 9; Pers. II.3); and so also the Juno of a woman (Tibul. IV.6); and it was customary to anoint the head of the image, to adorn it with chaplets, and to burn incense before it. Tibul. I.7, 51; II.2, 6; Ovid. Trist. V.5, 11. Even after death offerings were made to the Genius of the deceased, as Aeneas to that of his father (Ovid. Fast. II.545), to whom he offered gifts —

Ille patris Genio sollemnia dona ferebat —

a custom which explains the inscription, "IVNON" (Junoni), on the vase painted on the wall of this tomb at Cervetri.

Women were in the habit of swearing by their Juno (Tibul. III.6, 48) as men by their Genius; and a lover would even swear by the Juno of his mistress (Tibul. IV.13, 15), exalting her above every other divinity. Juvenal (II.98) denouncing the effeminacy of the Romans, set it in the strong est light by saying a servant swears by the Juno of his lord —

Et per Junonem domini jurante ministro.

Not only men and women, but places and things, had their Genii, according to the Roman creed (Festus, v. Genium; Serv. ad Georg. I.302; Aen. V.85, 95). Cities, as well as their component parts — streets, houses, baths, fountains, &c. — had their individual Genii; and so also with regions, provinces, armies, nations — every portion, as well  p67 as the whole collectively, had its presiding spirit. The Genius of the Roman People is often represented on coins, though Prudentius might well question his individual character —

Quanquam cur Genium Romae mihi fingitis unum,

Cum portis, domibus, thermis, stabulis, soleatis

Assignare suos Genios? perque omnia membra

Urbis, perque locos, Geniorum millia multa

Fingere, ne propriâ vacet angulus ullus ab umbrâ?

These genii loci were supposed to take the visible form of a serpent (Virg. Aen. V.95; Serv. ad loc.); and so they are constantly represented on the household shrines of Pompeii, eating meat or fruits from an altar.

The doctrine of Genii and Junones as held by the Romans, there is little doubt, was received from the Etruscans with that of the Lares. We know that the latter people worshipped Genii. A Genius Jovialis was one of their four Penates (Arnob. adv. Nat. III.40; cf. Serv. Aen. II.325); and Tages, their great law-giver, was himself the son of a Genius (Fest. v. Tages). And that the Etruscans held the doctrine of good and evil spirits attending the soul into the other world, is demonstrated by their monuments; but none more clearly than by the paintings in the Grotta del Cardinale at Corneto. This dualistic doctrine is thought by Gerhard (Gottheiten der Etrusker, p57) not to be Hellenic; Micali refers its origin to the East. Inghirami (Mon. Etrusc. I., p59 et seq.) did not perceive that it was held by the Etruscans; but this is now admitted on every hand. It is not so clear that the Etruscans held the distinction between Genii and Junones; for the sex of the ministering spirit is often not accordant with that of the human being, who, whether man or woman, is generally attended by a female spirit. Thus the majority of the demons, represented on Etruscan urns, sarcophagi, and mirrors, are females. Therefore it is not strictly correct to term such female-demons, Junones. Passeri (Paralipom. in Dempst., p93) employed the name "Geniae." Nor is it always easy to distinguish between the attendant Genii, good or bad, and the minsters of Fate, who are introduced as determining or directing events, or the Furies, who, as ministers of vengeance, are present at scenes of death, or assisting in the work of destruction. All have the same general characteristics. Wings at the shoulders — high buskins, often with long flaps, which are apt to be mistaken for talaria — a short, high-girt tunic — a double strap crossing the bosom, the upper ends passing over the shoulders, the under, behind the back, and united between the paps in a circular stud or rosette. The distinction must  p68 be drawn from the nature of the scene into which these demons are introduced, from their attitude and expression, but chiefly from the attribute in their hands, which, in the case of a Fury, or malignant Fate, is a hammer, sword, snakes, or there are torch; in the case of a decreeing Fate, is a scroll, or a bottle or ink-horn, with a stylus, or in a few instances, a hammer and a nail (see Vol. I, p510); in the case of a Genius may be a simple wand, or nothing at all. The demons of vengeance, who are often attendants on Charun, from their resemblance to the Furies of Greek mythology, are thought by Gerhard to have a Hellenic origin. Gottheiten der Etrusker, p17. Their Etruscan appellation is not yet discovered; but against some of the female-demons of milder character, especially those which have the attributes of Fates, the name "Lasa" has been found attached on Etruscan mirrors (Lanzi, Sagg. II. tav VI.6; Gerhard, Etrusk. Spiegel, taf. XXXVII., CLXXXI. Bull. Inst. 1846, p106), though a similar goddess is sometimes designated "Mean (Etrusk. Spiegel, taf. LXXXII., CXLI, CXLII). Lasa, from its connection with other names in the instances cited, seems a generic appellation. It must be equivalent to "Lara," the r and s being interchangeable letters; wherefore we find "Lases" for Lares in the Carmen Arvale. Lara or Larunda is considered by Müller (Etrusk. III., 4, 13) to be identical with Mania, the mother of the Manes and Lares. The origin of "Lasa" has also been referred to the Αἶσα of the Greeks (Bull. Inst. loc. cit.); but the analogy seems to be one of office rather than of appellation, for the derivation from the Etruscan "Lar" is perfectly satisfactory. Gerhard (Gottheiten der Etrusker, p16) on this ground translates Lasa as the "mistress," not only of the Genii of men, but of the analogous Junones of women, yet thinks Lasa must never be mistaken for a Juno.

Though the female ministering-spirits of the Etruscan mythology are not in every respect analogous to the Roman Junones, it may be well, in default of a specific name, to apply to them the same appellation. To the mild or decreeing Fates, the name of "Lasa" may be confidently attached; and the malignant Fates, or demons of vengeance, whose Etruscan name has not yet been ascertained, from their resemblance to the Erinyes or Eumenides of Grecian fable, may well be designated Furies.

The Author's Notes:

1 Aen. VIII.597. Pliny (N. H. III.8) calls it, "Caeretanus amnis."

2 Aen. VIII., 604.

3 This scene, of sheep following their shepherd, attracted by his voice, often meets the eye of the traveller in the East; and beautiful allusion is made to it in Holy Write (John X., 3, et seq.). Oxen and goats also, in Corsica, and even swine, in Italy, of old, used to follow their herdsman, at the sound of his trumpet. Polybius (XII. pp654, 655, ed. Casaub.), who records this fact, remarks that while the swineherds of Greece walked behind, those of Italy invariably preceded, their herds.

4 This region was famed for its cattle in the olden time. Lycophron (Cass. 1241) speaks of the valleys or glens of Agylla, abounding in flocks.—

Ἀγύλλης θ’ αἶ πολλύῤῥηνοι νάπαι.

5 Livy (XXII.1) relates that, in the year 537, "the waters of Caere flowed mingled with blood." Cf.  Val. Max.I.6, 5. The Aquae Caeretes, here mentioned, are generally supposed to be the same as the Θερμὰ Καιρετανὰ of Strabo (V. p220), now called the Bagni del Sasso, four miles west of Cervetri. May not the above tradition be preserved in the name of this stream?

6 Martial relished the pernae of Caere (XIII.34), and compared her wines to those of Setia (XIII.124). Columella (de Re Rust. III.3) testifies to the abundance of her grapes.

7 Dion. Hal. I p16; cf. III. p193. Dionysius does not specify which of these towns were "previously inhabited by the Siculi," and which were "built by the Pelasgi with their confederate Aborigines."

8 Dionysius is confirmed by Strabo (V. pp220, 226), Pliny (III.8), Servius (ad Virg. Aen. VIII.479; X.163), and Solinus (Polyh. cap. VIII), who all record the tradition that Agylla was founded by the Pelasgi. Servius states that they were led to select this site on account of a fountain; not being able to find water elsewhere in the neighbourhood. Strabo says these Pelasgi were from Thessaly (cf. Serv. ad Aen. VIII.600). Virgil corroborates the tradition by referring the grove of Silvanus on this site to the Pelasgi —

Silvano fama est veteres sacrâsse Pelasgos.

Lycophron (Cass. 1355) calls Agylla, Ausonian. It is justly remarked by Lepsius (Ann. Inst., 1836, p292) that there are more witnesses to the Pelasgic origin of Caere, than of any other city of Etruria.

9 It is stated by Hellanicus of Lesbos, that the Siculi were expelled from Italy at that period; Philistos of Syracuse gives the date as 30 years before the Trojan War; while Thucydides refers the expulsion to a period much subsequent to the fall of Troy (ap. Dion. Hal. p18). Nibby (Dintorni di Roma, I. p345) on the strength of the tradition of Hellanicus and Philistos, declares that the Pelasgic occupation took place, "certainly more than 1350 years before Christ."

10 That Agylla had a Greek origin may be inferred from the circumstance of its having dedicated treasure to the Delphian Apollo (Strabo, V.p220), and of its consulting that oracle (Herod. I.167). Niebuhr (I. p127) is persuaded that this dedication and consultation must have been made by the earlier inhabitants, the Pelasgi; as the Etruscans would have been content with their own aruspicy. Cf. Canina, Cere Antica, p16. Then the language of the city, in very early times, if Strabo may be believed, was Greek; or if we refuse credence to the tradition he records, we may, at least, receive it as evidence of the general belief in the Greek origin of the city, which gave rise to the legend. The name is considered by Gerhard to be derived from the Greek — ἀγυιά. Ann. Inst., 1831, p205. Servius (ad Aen. VIII.597), however, derives it from a heros eponymos, Agella.

11 Strabo, loc. cit. Steph. Byzant. v. Agylla. Servius (ad Aen. VIII.597) relates the same story, but on the authority of Hyginus (de Urbibus Italicis) refers this blunder to the Romans. Müller (Etrusk. einl. 2, 7, n46) thinks the original Etruscan name was "Cisra," and cites Verrius Flaccus (ap. Interp. Aen. X.183. Veron.) in confirmation. Lepsius (die Tyrrhen. Pelasg. p28) regards Caere as the original name, which came a second time into use; and thinks it was Umbrian, not Etruscan, in conformity with his theory of the Umbrian race and language being the foundation of the Etruscan. Canina (Cere Antica p25), who is of the old or literal school of historic interpretation, thinks that "the change of name, and the mingling of the Agyllans with the Etruscan invaders can be established in the first ten years after the fall of Troy;" while Niebuhr, on the other hand (I. p127, cf. p385), will not allow it to have been made even as late as the year of Rome 220 (B.C. 534).

12 Virg. Aen. VIII.648; VIII.481 et seq.

13 Plin. N. H. XXXV, 6.

14 Dion. Hal. III p193.

15 This may be learned from the passages of Dionysius and Strabo already cited, as well as from the prominent part the city took, in conjunction with Veii and Tarquinii, and the independent course she subsequently followed with regard to Rome. Livy (I.2) also represents Caere as a powerful city of Etruria.

16 Strabo, V.p220.

17 Dion. Hal. III p193. Nibby (I p347) thinks it may then have changed its name from Agylla to Caere.

18 Dion. Hal. IV.p231; cf. Liv. I.42.

19 Herod. I.166, 167.

20 Liv. I.60. Dionysius (IV. pp276, 279) however, asserts that it was to Gabii he fled, where his son Sextus was king. Livy says it was Sextus alone who went to Gabii.

21 This fraternity and intimate connection were probably owing to the Pelasgic origin of Caere, and the consequent want of a complete sympathy with the Etruscans. Niebuhr (I. p386) was even inclined to the opinion that Rome was a mere colony of Caere — an opinion which he had at first held, but afterwards modified. Lepsius (Ann. Inst., 1836, p203) thinks that the Pelasgic population of Caere was preserved more or less to a late produce. Cf. Millingen, Ann. Inst. 1834, p43.

22 Liv. V.40; Strabo, V.p220; Val. Max. I.I.10. Cf. Plut. Camil.; Flor. I.13. See also an inscription in the Vatican, given by Gruter, p492, 7, and Muratori, p172, 4.






. . . EXIT

23 Strabo, loc. cit.

24 Liv. V.50. Strabo, loc. cit.

25 This condition became proverbial, and what had originally been conferred (p25)as an honour was made significant of disgrace; for tabulae Caerites and cera Caeritis came to imply the condition of Roman citizens, who had been deprived of the right of suffrage. Hor. I. ep. VI.62. Aul. Gell. XVI.13, 7. Strabo, loc. cit. Niebuhr (II. pp60, 67) is of opinion, from the classification of Festus (v. Municipium), that Caere was really degraded from the highest rank of citizenship, in consequence of her conduct in the year 401; and thus he accounts for the proverbial reference to the Caeritan franchise as a disgraceful condition.

26 Val. Max. loc. cit. Festus, v. Caerimonia. The etymologies of the ancients, however, are rarely to be trusted; but Niebuhr (I. p386) thinks this derivation very plausible. It has been suggested to me that the first syllable of the word was not originally Caeri, but Coeri (for Curi, i.e. Cura) — monia — which, at least, is expressive of the meaning; and the two diphthongs are sometimes interchangeable.

27 See the last chapter, page 15.

28 Liv. VII.19, 20.

29 Liv. XXVIII.45.

30 Sil. Ital. VIII.474.

31 Strabo, V p220. Now the Bagni del Sasso, so called from a remarkable bare crag on the summit of the neighbouring mountain. It is about 4 miles west of Cervetri, and is visible from the road between Sta Severa and Palo. Mannert (Geog. p379) places the Aquae Caeretanae at Ceri. Cluver (II p493) confounds them with the Aquae Apollinaris, on the upper road from Rome to Tarquinii, now the Bagni di Stigliano; and the Table favours his view. Westphal (Röm. Kamp. p160) also regards these names as identical. But Holstenius (Annot. ad Cluv. p35) distinguishes between the two Aquae, placing one at Stigliano, the other at Bagni del Sasso. Cluver thinks that Martial (VI.42) refers to the Aquae Apollinaris under the name of "Phoebi Vada." Gell (v. Agylla) mistakes the Careiae of the Itinerary for Caere; but it is evidently the station on the Via Clodia, now called Galera. See Vol. I p77.

Careias XV.
Aquas Apollinaris XVIIII.
Tarquinios XII.
Lorio XII.
Aquas Apollinaris VIII.
Tarquinis XII.

32 Festus v. Municipium. Gruter, pp215, 1; 485, 5; cf. 235, 9. Cluver, II. p493. Bull. Inst., 1840, pp5‑8. — Canina. In excavations made in 1840 on the site of the city, some beautiful marble statues of Tiberius, Drusus, Germanicus, and Agrippina were discovered, together with that singular bas-relief with the names and emblems of three Etruscan (p27)cities, Tarquinii, Vetulonia, and Vulci, of which mention has been made in a former chapter. Vol. I p404. To the references there given, add Bull. Inst. 1843, p174.— Cavedoni. These monuments are now among the chief ornaments of the new Museum of the Lateran. In the season of 1845‑6, the Augustine monks of Cervetri discovered many more statues and torsi, with altars, bas-reliefs, beautiful cornices, and other architectural fragments of a theatre, coloured tiles and antefixae, and numerous fragments of Latin inscriptions, with one in Etruscan, "Cusiach," which is unique in having the letters cut in marble and inlaid on a darker stone. These things are perhaps still to be seen at the Convent.

33 A bull of Gregory IX, in 1236, distinguishes between these two towns, specifying "plebes et ecclesias in Cere Novâ," and also, "in Cere Vetere et finibus ejus." Nibby, Dintorni di Roma I. p355.

34 Bull. Inst., 1840, pp5‑8; 1846, p129. But Gruter (pp214; 652, 8) had long ago given some inscriptions referring to Caere, which were found at Cervetri. Canina claims to have been the first to indicate the true site of this city.

35 Canina (Cere Antica p52) says there are no vestiges of the walls which surrounded the city; but foundations may, in several parts, be traced along the brow of the cliffs, and on the side opposite the Banditaccia, for a considerable extent. Many of the ancient blocks have been removed of later years to construct walls in the neighbourhood, and I was an indignant witness of this destruction, on one of my visits to the site. Nibby (I. p358) speaks of traces of the more ancient or Pelasgic walls of large irregularly squared blocks, along the cliffs on the east of the city, and still more distinct on the western side. I could perceive no such remains; all the fragments I observed being of an uniform character — rectangular tufo masonry, of smaller blocks than usual, and very similar in size and arrangement to the fragments of walling at Veii (Vol. I p15), and Tarquinii (Vol. I p383), and to the ancient fortifications on the height of S. Silvestro, near the Tiber, which I take to mark the site of Fescennium (Vol. I p160). It is nevertheless possible that these walls are of Pelasgic construction; for, as the only material on the spot is soft tufo, which (p30)has a rectangular cleavage, the Pelasgic founders of the city could not avoid using it except by fetching limestone, at a great expense of labour, from the mountains inland; and, using the tufo, they would naturally hew it into forms most easily worked and arranged, as they did in the Regulini-Galassi tomb, and other early sepulchres of Caere, whose contents authorise us to regard them as Pelasgic. The objection to assign such an origin to the remains of the city walls, lies not in the rectangularity of the blocks, but in their small size; seeing that all the ancient fortifications we are best warranted in ascribing to the Pelasgi, are composed of enormous masses. Though I acknowledge the influence of the local materials on the style of masonry, I do not think it amounts to a constructive necessity; and though I believe the Pelasgi may have employed one style of masonry at Cosa, another at Cortona, and a third at Agylla, I cannot admit that they exercised no preference, or that any other people with the same materials would have arrived at the very peculiar style which they seem always to have followed, where practicable, and which is generally called after their name. For further remarks on this subject, see chap. XLVII.

36 Mrs. Gray, from whose account that of the Hand-book is derived, may be excused having fallen into this error, when the same had been stated by the highest archaeological authorities in Rome. Cere Antica, p51. Bull. Inst., 1838, p171. In truth, a spot so swarming with caverns, might well suggest such an appellation.

37 One of them has a small pilaster against its inner wall, with capital and abacus quite Doric, and shaft, also, of early Doric proportions, though resting on a square base.

38 The above plan is that of the Seat and Shield Tomb, presently to be described. The following is the explanation:

a Rock-hewn steps leading down to the tomb.
b The vestibule.
c, c Chambers on each side of the entrance.
d Doorway to the tomb.
e Principal chamber, or atrium.
f, f, f Inner chambers, or triclinia.
g, g, g Entrances to the inner chambers.
h, h Windows to the same, cut in the rock.
i, i, Arm-chairs and foot-stools, hewn from the rock.
k, kº Windows cut in the rock.
l Niche recessed in the wall.

The sepulchral benches which surround each chamber are here indicated; sometimes with a raised, ornamental head-piece.

The shaded part of the plan represents the rock in which the tomb is hollowed.

39 Described by Vitruvius (VI.3), Varro (L. L. V.161), and Festus (v. Atrium). The atrium in this case was not a true cavaedium, but being open to the sky; but had it been, the purpose of concealment would have been defeated. Indeed it was sometimes deemed necessary to support the ceiling by a massive pillar of rock. Yet that the analogy was intended, and was preserved as far as possible, is evident from the windows around, which suppose the light to have been received from the central chamber. See the above Plan.

40 See Vol. I page 408.

41 This word, from its position in the corner of the tomb, seems to be the first of an inscription never completed. It appears to have some analogy with the Cethen. Suthi, which commences the celebrated inscription of S. Manno, near Perugia, and also with the initial word of another inscription given by Lanzi (Sagg. II p509; cf. Vermigl. Iscriz. Perug. I. p140). See Bull. Inst., 1847, p55. This tomb, in size, form, and arrangements, is very like that of the Tarquins, which is represented in the wood-cut at the head of this chapter.

42 Antichi Monumenti di Ceri, p31 — where he gives a description of a similar tomb.

43 It may have been for the support of a funeral urn; for in the tombs of Chiusi, canopi, or vases in the form of human busts, which were, probably, the effigies of the deceased whose ashes they contain, have been found placed on seats of this form. Bull. Inst. 1843, p68. Such canopi have also been discovered at Caere, says Micali, Mon. Ined. p185.

44 Micali, Mon. Ined. p152.

45 The form of this and similar rock-hewn seats in other tombs of Cervetri is very like that of the beautiful marble chair, with bas-reliefs, in the Palazzo Corsini at Rome, which is thought to be Etruscan, and a genuine sella curulis. It will be borne in mind that the curule chair was one of the Etruscan insignia of authority; and thence adopted by the Romans. See Vol. I pp26, 376, 377.

46 Compare the Plan at page 32. The shields were of large size, like the Argolic shields, and like that on the tomb at Norchia (Vol. I p252). This tomb has been described and delineated in Bull. Instit., 1834, p99. Ann. Inst., 1835, p184. Mon. Ined. Inst. II. tav. XIX. For further remarks on the shields, see the Appendix to this Chapter, Note I.

47 Mr. Ainsley, however, in a subsequent visit, has been more fortunate, in falling in with a person who was present at the opening of the tomb, and remembered its site. He represents the principal chamber, indicated as e in the Plan, at page 32, as being hung with ten or twelve of these shields, carved in the rock, in relief.

48 A singular feature here is, that instead of a separate lectus for each pair the revellers are depicted reclining on a continuous couch, which, as it occupies (p37)three walls of the tomb, may be supposed to represent a triclinium, such as the Romans used; and this, I believe, is the only ancient painting of that sort of banqueting-scene, now in existence. The figures here lie under a red and white striped coverlet, or stragulum. The small tables by the side of the triclinium are not the usual τράπεζαι (i.e.τετράπεζαι), or with four legs, as in all the paintings of Tarquinii, but τρίποδες, or with only three feet.

49 Banquets by lamp-light are rarely represented in Etruscan tombs — the only other instance I remember is in the Grotta Querciola at Corneto; the revellers are generally depicted as lying under the shade of the ivy or vine, or amid groves of myrtle. Even in the Grotta Querciola, though a candelabrum is introduced, the festive couches are surrounded by trees. The candelabra in this tomb of Caere are worthy of particular notice, as they are depicted with a number of little vases, or other small objects tied to the stem in clusters; and candelabra, with vases so attached, have also been discovered in Etruscan tombs at Vulci. Bull. Inst. 1832, p194. From this we learn a secondary use to which these elegant articles of furniture were applied.

50 See the Appendix to this Chapter, Note II.

51 In the floor of this tomb is an oblong pit, just such as opens in the ceilings of so many sepulchres at Civita Castellana, and as is shown in the roof of the tomb of the Tarquins, in the wood-cut, at page 17. Whether it be the shaft to a second sepulchral chamber beneath this, as analogy suggests, or is merely intended to drain the tomb, I cannot say, for I found it full of water. In the so‑called "Tomb of Solon" at Gombet Li, in Phrygia, described by Steuart in his (p38)work on Lydia and Phrygia, there is a similar well or shaft sunk in the middle of a sepulchral chamber.

52 For notices of this tomb see Bull. Inst., 1847, pp61, 97.

53 Plin. XXXV.6.

54 See Vol. I pp50‑52.

55 Mr. Ainsley has subsequently rediscovered it. He describes its paintings as more archaic than any at Tarquinii. A description of them has been given by Kramer (Bull. Inst. 1834, pp97‑101), who represents them as of the rudest character, painted on the bare porous tufo, which has undergone no preparation, not being even smoothed, to receive them. The tomb was nearly elliptical, and had an upper and a lower bad of figures; those in the lower were almost effaced; but above, there was a man with pointed beard, and close vest, shooting an arrow at a stag — a lion devouring a stag, while a second lion, squatting by, looked on — a ram flying from another lion — and fragments of other animals, and of a second man with a bow. There was much truth and expression in the beasts, in spite of their unnatural parti-colouring. The only hues used in this tomb are black, white, and red. The face and legs of the archer were painted white — a very singular fact, as that was the conventional hue of females. The door-moulding was striped diagonally, as in Egyptian architecture, with red, white, and black. Many of the above figures, according to Mr. Ainsley, have now disappeared, and unless some means are taken to preserve them, the rest will soon perish. Cf. Ann. Inst. 1835, p183.

56 Bull. Inst. 1847, p97.

57 The pit which forms the entrance to each of these tombs is lined with tufo masonry. The style is not uniform; in this instance it is what I have termed emplecton, precisely resembling the walls of Sutri, Falleri, and Nepi, but here of rather smaller dimensions, the courses being only 19 inches high. Canina remarks on the masonry at the mouth of these tombs being always opus quadratum, even in those which can with most confidence be pronounced of most ancient construction. Bull. Inst. 1845, p224. The frequent traces of the passages having been vaulted in by the gradual convergence of the horizontal courses, establish their high antiquity, as prior to the invention or practice of the arch.

58 On a spherical cippus, found at Chiusi, was inscribed "TARCNAL," (Passeri, Acheront. p66, ap. Gori, III) — "TARCHNAS" on a cornelian scarabaeus, found near Piscille (Vermiglioli, Iscriz. Perug. I. p81, tav. V.2) — "TARCHI," (p42)on a column in the Museo Oddi at Perugia (id. I. p148) — "TARCHIS," on one of the urns in the Grotta de' Volunni at Perugia.— "TARCHISA," on an urn in the Museum of Florence (Lanzi, Saggio, II. p417). "TARCHU," on a black cinerary pot from Chiusi, now in the same collection. The name on the spherical disc at Toscanella, which I thought to have been "TARCHNAS," (See Vol. I p448), is said by Kellermann (Bull. Inst. 1833, p61, and Suppl. 47), to be "Tarsalus." Lanzi fancied that Tarchu and Tarchi were the original Etruscan forms of the name, and "Tarchun," the Greek form adopted by the Romans. But it is quite unnecessary to refer any one of these to the Greek. Tarch was no doubt the primitive form, with the inflexion of Tarch-i-u, or un; from this the adjective was formed by the usual addition of na or nasTarchnas (Tarquinius), Tarchnai (Tarquinia). The termination sa or isa is indicative of connection by marriage, or Tarchisa may be equivalent to Tarquitia — an Etruscan family renowned for its skill in divination. Plin. N. H. I. lib. II.º; Macrob. Sat. III.7; cf. II.16; Amm. Marcell. XXV.2; J. Lydus de Ostent. II.

Thayer's Note: Something got garbled, I fear, in Dennis's notes here:

59 Liv. I.60. Dionysius says the king fled to Gabii, where Sextus was king, and after staying there some time in the vain hope of inducing the Latins to take up his cause, he removed to the city of Etruria, whence his mother's family had come; i.e. Tarquinii (V. pp276, 279); but no mention is made of Caere.

60 Liv. II.6.

61 Livy (II.6, 9) says the elder Tarquin and his son Titus subsequently went to Tarquinii, Veii, and Clusium, to raise the cities of Etruria in their cause, and (p43)when the campaign of Porsenna had failed to reinstate them at Rome, they retired to Tusculum, to their relative Mamilius Octavius (Liv. II.15). We hear no more of them at Caere, yet from their choosing that city as their first place of refuge in their exile, it is highly probable that they had relatives residing there, as well as at Gabii, Tarquinii, and Tusculum. The existence of this tomb at least establishes the Etruscan origin of the Tarquins, which Niebuhr has called into question (I. pp376, 511).

62 The depth of the floor below the surface must be very considerable — hardly less than 50 feet.

63 See the wood-cut at page 17.

64 I have given all the inscriptions that remain legible, whether Etruscan or Latin, in Bull. Inst. 1847, pp56‑59. Compare Dr. Mommsen's version of some of them (p63) which differs from mine, though I cannot think in every instance so correct.

65 The Latin inscriptions in this tomb do not necessarily indicate a very late date; if the family were of the royal blood of Rome, the occasional use of the Latin character may be explained, without referring these epigraphs to the period of Roman domination. Moreover, even though in Latin letters, the name sometimes retains its Etruscan form — "TARCNA" — which is quite novel, and a presumptive evidence of antiquity.

66 In more than forty inscriptions, I could find only eleven names of other families, and of these seven only were in Etruscan characters and connected with the name of Tarchnas; the other four were in Latin, and quite distinct.

67 See the woodcut at the head of this chapter. The shaft was either used as an entrance after the doorway had been closed, by means of niches cut for the feet and hands; or may have served, by the removal of the covering above, to ventilate the sepulchre, in preparation for the annual parentalia. Such shafts are most common in the tombs of Falerii; but there open generally in the anti-chamber, rarely in the tomb itself.

68 The masonry is of rectangular blocks of nenfro, in the outer chamber about 18 inches long, in courses from 12 to 15 inches deep; but in the inner, of more massive dimensions.

69 The outer chamber is 33 feet, the inner 14½ feet long, and the thickness of the partition-wall, 3 feet; making the entire length 60½ feet. The inner doorway is 6¼ feet high and 4½ wide at the bottom, narrowing upward to 1 foot at the top. Similar passage-tombs have been found elsewhere in this necropolis, especially in that part called Zambra (Bull. Inst. 1840, p133), as well as at Palo and Selva la Rocca.

Tombs of this passage-form are generally of high antiquity. These bear an evident relation to the Treasuries of Mycenae and Orchomenos, and to the (p47)Nurhags or Nuraghe of Sardinia and the Talajots of the Balearics, in as far as they are roofed in on the same principle. And they are probably of not inferior antiquity. Like the Nuraghe they may with good reason be regarded as the work of the Tyrrhene Pelasgi. The Druidical barrows of our own country sometimes contain passage-formed sepulchres like those of Cervetri.

70 Stephens' Yucatan, I. p429, et seq. This traveller's description and illustrations show the remarkable analogy between these American pseudo-vaults and those of ancient Europe. The sides of the arch are hewn to a smooth curved surface, as in the Regulini tomb (see the woodcut at page 46), and terminate not in a point, but in a square head, formed by the imposition of flat blocks; the peculiarity consists in the courses being often almost at right angles with the line of the arch, showing a near approach to the cuneiform principle.

71 Cavalier Canina (Cere Antica, p80) refers its construction to the Pelasgi, or earliest inhabitants of Agylla, and assigns to it and its contents an antiquity of not less than 3000 years, making it coeval with the Trojan war. He says it can be determined that precisely in the reign of Tarquinius Priscus, the change in the mode of constructing the arch was effected in Rome, for Tarquin introduced the style from Tarquinii. But though (p48) we were absolutely certain that Tarquin built the Cloaca Maxima, we have no authority for determining when the first true arch was erected in Rome. The principle may, for aught we know, have been known and practised at a much earlier period. At any rate, it is highly probable that it had been known in Etruria some time before the construction of the Cloaca Maxima, and if at Tarquinii whence Tarquin migrated, why not at Caere, a neighbouring city belonging to the same people? As regards this tomb all are agreed on its very high antiquity. Even Micali, who sees everything in a more modern light than most of his fellows, admits that the style of architecture shows it to be prior to the foundation of Rome (Mon. Ined. p359). Grifi, however, and Cavedoni (Bull. Inst. 1843, p46) refer it to the third century of the City. Canina is of opinion that the tomb in its original state was surmounted by a small tumulus, but that after the arrival of the Lydians, another tumulus of much larger size was constructed about it, of which it formed a part; traces of such a second tumulus having been found in an encircling basement of masonry and several chambers hollowed in the rock below the original tomb, — and that the piling up of the earth around the latter was the means of preserving it intact from those who in ages past rifled the rest of the sepulchre. This has been pronounced by a most able critic, to be "a sagacious analysis." Bull. Inst. 1838, p172.

72 Lepsius, no mean authority on Egyptian matters, remarks the evident imitation of Egyptian forms (Ann. Inst. 1836, p187). The ordinary observer would not hesitate to pronounce the figures on some of the vessels to be purely Egyptian.

73 A learned friend suggests that this reticulated bier may be regarded as an illustration of the εὔτρηπτον λέχος of Paris and Helen. Iliad III.448.

74 Much like that shown at page 58.

75 The nails thus supporting crockery or bronzes in Etruscan tombs, throw light on the use of them in the so‑called Treasury of Atreus, at Mycenae, where they have long been supposed to have fastened the plates of bronze with which it was imagined the walls were lined. It has been suggested, however, that no nails ever existed in that celebrated Thesaurus, but that certain nodules in the blocks have been mistaken for them. Bull. Inst. 1836, p58 — Wolff. But admitting that there were really nails, it is far more probable that they served to support pottery or other sepulchral furniture, than a lining of metal, seeing it is now generally admitted that the so‑called "Treasuries" of Greece were no other than tombs.

76 Canina (Cere Ant. p75) states that the floor under the corpse, in both tombs, was paved with stones cemented together — selci collegati in calce — an unique feature, and worthy of particular notice in connection with the very remote antiquity of the tomb.

77 Bull. Inst. 1836, p60.

78 Bull. Inst. 1836, p60. Though this is somewhat vague, it conveys the idea of the great abundance of this metal. It was found crushed beneath a mass of fallen masonry.

79 Canina, Cere Antica, p76. Cavedoni, Bull. Inst. 1843, p46. The inscriptions were on several of the silver vessels, and consisted merely of the female name "Larthia," or "Mi Larthia," in Etruscan characters. This was conjectured to signify the proprietor of those vessels, who, it was concluded, was also the occupant of the tomb. Larthia is the feminine of Lar, Lars, or Larth, as it is variously written.

80 The necklace appears too massive and clumsy for a female's neck; fibulae would be applicable to either sex; earrings were not considered inappropriate to males in the East, any more than they are now in southern Europe; and bracelets of gold, we are taught by the old legend of Tarpeia, to regard as the common ornaments of Sabine soldiers in very early times. And though Niebuhr (I. p226) has pronounced these golden decorations of the Sabines to have had no existence, save in the imagination of the poet who sang the lay, the discoveries made since his day, especially in Etruscan tombs, prove the abundance of gold ornaments in very early times, and also their warlike application; so that whatever improbability there be in the story, arises merely from its inconsistency with the simple, hardy manners of the Sabines. Yet even here, the analogy of the golden torques of the rude and warlike Gauls might be cited in support of the legend.

Micali (Mon. Ined. p60) is surprised that the ornaments in this tomb should ever have been supposed to belong to a priest, for the breastplate and fibulae, from their fragility, were evidently, he thinks, mere sepulchral decorations; and the bracelets show a funereal subject — a woman attacked by lions, and rescued by two winged genii — which he interprets as the soul freed from the power of evil spirits by the intervention of good. It may be remarked that the form of this tomb is that prescribed by Plato (Leg. XII. p947, ed. Steph.) for Greek priests — "a grave under ground, a lengthened vault of choice stones, hard and imperishable, and having parallel couches of rock." The benches alone are here wanting.

81 Micali (Mon. Ined. p62) remarks that the silver vessels give, in the design of their adornments, the most perfect imitations of the Asiatic or Egyptian style, and that a further analogy is also displayed in the religious symbols expressed on them; yet, with all this, the stamp of nationality is so strongly marked, as to distinguish them altogether from purely Egyptian works. This, and the Isis-tomb of Vulci, contain the earliest monuments of Etruscan primitive art, as it existed before it had been subjected to Hellenic influence.

82 Cere Athens. pp75, 78.

83 For the foregoing description of the contents of this tomb and their arrangement, I am indebted to Canina, Cere Antica, parte terza; Braun, Bull. Inst. 1836, pp56‑62; Bull. Inst. 1838, p173. See also Grifi, Monumenti di Cere Antica, a work written to prove from the contents of the tomb the oriental, and especially Mithraic, character of the Etruscan worship.

84 Bull. Inst. 1836, p62. The writer does not mention in what characters was this inscription, though he says it was not worth copying! I could not learn if the tomb is still open.

85 It has been erroneous asserted that this "horn-book" was found in the Regulini-Galassi tomb. Sepulchres of Etruria, pp26, 347.

86 The difference between this alphabet and the genuine Etruscan one, found on a vase at Bomarzo, is very apparent. See the fac-simile in Vol. I p225. That has but twenty letters, this twenty-five, and both in their form and collocation there are wide differences. That has the Etruscan peculiarity of running from right to left. In Greek letters this alphabet would be thus expressed:— Α, Β, Γ, Δ, Ε, ϝ (the digamma), Ζ, Η (the ancient aspirate), Θ, Ι, Κ, Λ, Μ (this is the letter effaced), Η, Ξ, Ο, Π, ϙ (koppa), Ρ, Σ, Τ, Υ, Χ, Φ, Ψ. It will be remarked that the same force has not been assigned to certain of these letters where they occur in the primer, and the reader will be ready to dispute my accuracy. Let him break a lance then with Professor Lepsius, who is my authority, and who gives his views of this inscription in the Ann. Inst. 1836, pp186‑203.

87 Solinus, Polyhist. cap. VIII.

88 The letters here are of the most archaic forms known, some of them strongly resembling the Phoenician; and the presence of the vau and the koppa, and the want of the eta and omega, establish the high antiquity of the pot. There are some singular features to be remarked. The arrangement of the letters in the alphabet does not correspond with that in the primer, and in both it differs from that generally received. The vowels in the primer are placed in an order entirely novel, and which is at variance with that of the alphabet. There is a curious instance of pentimento or alteration in the fourth line. Some of the characters, moreover, have new and strange forms, and their force appears doubtful. I have given that assigned to them by Lepsius, who has eruditely discussed the palaeography of this inscription. Notwithstanding its Greek or Pelasgic character, there are circumstances which seem to betray that it was scratched by an Etruscan hand. For evidences of this, I refer the curious reader to the said article by Professor Lepsius, merely mentioning that this inscription bears a strong affinity to an alphabet and primer inscribed on the walls of an Etruscan tomb at Colle, near Volterra. (See Chapter XXXIX.)

89 See the above-cited article by Lepsius. Ann. Inst. 1836, pp186‑203, where the inscription is given in its proper characters; and his more recent remarks (p56)in his pamphlet, "Ueber die Tyrrhenischen Pelasger in Etrurien," pp39‑42, where he lucidly points out the peculiarities both in the language and characters which distinguish this inscription from the Etruscan, and mark it as Pelasgic. He states that Müller agreed with his opinion on this point, though it was disputed by Franz (Elementa Epigraphices Graecae, p24), who admitted, however, that the language was not Etruscan.

90 Canina, Cere Ant. p53. So also Abeken, Mittelitalien, p37. Gell (Topog. of Rome, I. p1) places the grove on the hills on the opposite side of the Vaccina. But Virgil seems to have placed it rather on the banks of the stream than on a hill of any sort, and I should therefore consider it to have stood in the ravine between the city and Monte Abatone, in which case the colles cavi would be aptly represented by the cliffs hollowed into tombs, and the slopes at whose foot are still dark with wood, though not of fir-trees.

91 Virg. Aen. VIII.597 —

Est ingens gelidum lucus prope Caeritis amnem,

Religione patrum latè sacer: undique colles

Inclusère cavi, et nigrà nemus abiete cingunt.

Silvano fama est veteros sacràsse Pelasgos.

Livy (XXI.62) mentions an oracle at Ca.

92 Cavaliere P. E. Visconti (Ant. Monum. Sepolc. di Ceri, p17) would derive it from ἄβατον — a spot sacred, not to be trodden — on the ground that this was the name applied by the Rhodians to the edifice they had raised round the statue of Artemisia to conceal it from the public view. Vitruv. II.8. But Cav. Canina rejects this derivation, on account of the necropolis of Caere being on the opposite side, in the Banditaccia. Yet the cemeteries of Etruscan towns were not confined to any one side, though one spot might, for convenience sake, be more especially devoted to interment; and in this case in particular the city was completely surrounded by tombs. When two Roman knights are breaking a lance together, who shall venture to step between them? Yet the probability seems in favour of the fir-trees; unless, indeed, the word is derived from some Abbey that in the identical ages stood on the spot.

93 The entrance, as usual in the tombs of Cervetri, is lined with masonry. The doorway is cut in the rock in an arched form, and around it is a groove, into which fitted the ancient door, a slab of stone.

94 Ut supra, page 33. In one of the two side-chambers which open on the entrance-passage of this tomb, the walls also are panelled in relief with the very same pattern as decorates the said tomb of the Sun and Moon at Vulci. This two-fold coincidence in this sepulchre is remarkable.

95 The basement is 63 feet by 56. Visconti makes it larger — 108 by 91 Roman palms. At the back, or on the side opposed to the entrance, is a square projection or buttress in the masonry. The blocks are of tufo, and the courses recede as they ascend, as in the walls of Servius Tullius at Rome. Similar square basements of masonry, generally emplecton, and probably the bases of pyramids, are not uncommon in this necropolis, especially in the glen of the Vaccina, beneath the cliffs of the city.

96 See page 34. Micali, in his last work, in which he seeks to establish oriental analogies in Etruscan monuments, expresses his opinion that these seats are Mithraic symbols — and so he also regards the celebrated marble chair of the Corisini Palace. Mon. Ined. p152.

97 Here character fragments of embroidery in flowers of smalt of Egyptian workmanship — a piece of blue pasta inscribed with hieroglyphics — alabastra in the form of Egyptian females — and bits of amber and other oriental gums placed around the corpse. A morsel of one of these gums being put to the fire emitted so powerful an odour as to be insupportable, says Visconti, even in the spacious hall of the Ducal palace at Ceri. Ant. Mon. di Ceri, pp29‑32. The vault at the entrance proves this tomb to be very ancient.

98 For a detailed destruction of this tomb and its contents, and for illustrative plans and sections, see the work of Cav. P. E. Visconti, Antichi Monumenti Sepolcrali di Ceri.

99 This tumulus is about 75 feet in diameter. The masonry of the basement has this peculiarity, that at the distance of every 10 or 11 feet a block projects, so as to give the whole a resemblance to a vast cog-wheel lying on the ground. In the masonry, just above the entrance, is a pit or shaft, as in the tombs of Civita Castellana, but there is no appearance of communication with the tomb below, and it could not therefore have served the purpose of an entrance.

100 Visconti (Ant. Mon. di Ceri, p20) states, but apparently as a mere conjecture, that this flight of steps was originally concealed, so that a person entering the passage or descending the steps from above, would take the vestibule with its moulded doorway for the real sepulchre.

101 Visconti, p21. A full description of this tomb, with illustrations, will be found in the said work of Visconti. The architectural decorations do not betray a very high antiquity.

102 An external analogy to houses is not very obvious in these tumular sepulchres. They have been supposed to have the funeral pyre for their type (Ann. Inst. 1832, p275), but the usual analogy may, perhaps, be traced in the habitations of the ancient Phrygians, who, dwelling in bare plains, on account of the scarcity of wood raised lofty mounds of earth, weaving stakes above them into a cone, heaping reeds and stubble around them, and hollowing them out for their habitation. Such dwellings were very cool in summer, and extremely warm in winter. Vitruv. II.1, 5. Externally they must have resembled the shepherds' capanne, which now stud the Campagna of Rome. Indeed, if the tumular form of sepulture were not one of natural suggestion, and which has therefore been employed by almost every nation from China to Peru, it might be supposed that the Lydians, who employed it extensively (see Vol. I p353), had copied the subterranean huts of their neighbours the Phrygians, and introduced the fashion into Etruria. The conical pit-houses of the ancient Armenians might in the same way be regarded as the types of the tombs of that form which abound in southern Etruria, and are found also south of the Tiber, as well as in Sicily (see Vol. I p121); for the description given of them (Xenophon, Anab. IV.5, 25; cf. Diodor. XIV. pp258‑9) closely corresponds. The interiors of these subterranean huts of Armenia presented scenes very like those in an Italian capanna.

103 It consisted of great quantities of black ware with a brilliant varnish; no painted vases except fragments in the earliest style; broken sculpture of very archaic character; and articles in smalt, and bronze, and highly-wrought ornaments in gold, some in the Egyptian style. The name Zambra seems of Saracenic origin, and recalls the old romances of Granada; but it was used in Italy in the middle ages for camera; and it seems probable that this spot derived its name from the sepulchral chambers here discovered. The word is also met with in several parts of Tuscany, but attached to streams and torrents (see Repetti, sub voce); so that it is difficult to trace a connection with the Moorish dance. For an account of the tombs, see Abeken, Bull. Inst. 1840, p133; Mittelitalien, pp236, 268, 272; Micali, Mon. Ined. p375, et seq. tav. LVI.

104 Abeken (Mittelital. p240) fancied there might be some reason for this westward position of the oldest tombs, as though it were chosen for its approximation to the sea, the peculiar element of the Tyrrhene race. He notices the analogy of the Nuraghe on the western shore of Sardinia.

105 To the Pelasgi, says Lepsius, must undoubtedly be referred the vases of black earth of peculiar, sometimes bizarre, but often elegant forms, adorned with fantastic handles, figures, nobs, flutes, and zigzag patterns — as well as the fine old gold articles, of archaic and extremely careful style, very thinly wrought, and sown with minute gold grains, and studded with short stumpy figures, with marked outlines and many Egyptian characteristics. "A central point, as it were, for this entire class of articles, which we might pre-eminently call Pelasgic, is now obtained through the important discoveries in the sepulchres of the ancient Agylla or Caere." Tyrrhen. Pelasg. pp44‑5.

106 Of this rare class of vases from Caere, there are two in the Gregorian Museum. One, an olpe, represents the combat of Ajax (Aivas), and Hector, who is assisted by Aeneas. The palaeography of the inscriptions, just like that of the Dodwell vase, determines this also to be Doric; especially the use of the Ϙ instead of the Κ; for the koppa is quite foreign to Attic inscriptions. Mon. Ined. Inst. II. tav. 38; Ann. Inst. 1836, pp306‑310, Abeken. The other vase, a hydria, represents a boar-hunt, as on the Dodwell vase. Mus. Gregor. II. tav. 17, 2. Another good specimen of this class of Caeritan pottery is in the possession of Cavaliere Campana at Rome. And there is one at Berlin, which represents the combat between Achilles and Memnon, with birds flying over the horses' heads — a frequent symbol on painted vases, which has been interpreted as a type of swiftness, or as an augury — and also with peculiar palaeography. Mon. Ined. Inst. II. tav. 38; Ann. Inst. 1836, pp310‑311. The figures on these vases are black and violet, on a pale yellow ground; and the outlines are scratched, as on other vases of the most ancient style.

107 Ann. Inst. 1837, p183.

108 Livy (IV.61) alone mentions this town, and he does so to distinguish it from the Artena of the Volsci, which is thought to have occupied the heights above Monte Fortino. He says the Etruscan Artena belonged to Caere, and not to Veii as some supposed. Nibby placed it at Castellaccio in the tenuta of Castel Campanile, where he found traces of an Etruscan town; but Gell thought it more likely to have stood at Boccea, or Buccea, near the Arrone, twelve miles from Rome, for "there is here a high and insulated point, which has all the appearance of a citadel, and which seems to have been occupied at a subsequent period by a patrician villa." (I. p195.)

Thayer's Notes:

a Cervetri: the official spelling is now Cerveteri. It appears to be a commendatory spelling, since restoring the e brings out the antiquity of the town (etymologically "old Caere": Caere Vetus, in the oblique cases Caer veter-). I suspect the wholesale process of place renaming that occurred during the period of Fascist grandeur in the 1930s, but don't know this for sure. At any rate, it is very hard to legislate speech, and local pronunciation of Cervéteri remains in fact Cervetri.

b Banditaccia: The visually oriented will find this photograph useful.

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