08 November 2010

Annotated Bibliography - Etruscan Sarcophagus Larthia Seianti

Steingraeber, Stephen, "Investing In The Afterlife," Dig 6, no. 3, (March 2004), 6.

The article highlights the importance Etruscans placed on death and the subsequent afterlife. They crafted elaborate tombs that reflected their value of honoring the dead. Sites were built at the tomb for family and friends to pay homage to the deceased; these were specifically in the way of elevated platforms. Corridors usually lead into the main chamber of the tomb, and along the way walls were decorated with architectural detail consisting of features like windows and columns. In the chamber the deceased were placed on stone beds or in wooden sarcophagi. This is where the investment can be seen. All around the tomb rich burial gifts were placed. These included things such as vases, weapons, and jewelry. Tomb art reflected Greek influence and style, but the custom of decorating the tomb was an Etruscan concept. Wall scenes depicted mostly humans and animals, and they provided information about daily living, sports, banquets, and social customs.

Merola, Marco. "Unearthing The Tomb of The Badger." Archaeology 61, no. 5 (September 2008), 27-29.

This essay is on the recent discovery of a new Etruscan tomb. The tomb has been determined to be one of the largest gravesites from the era. Despite this being at the end of the Etruscan era and the beginning on the Roman, the burial still has all the markings and customs of traditional Etruscan sentiment. Etruscan tombs were noteworthy for their valuables, and many of them remained in place here. Vases, bronze mirrors, and sarcophagi make up the largest portion.

"Etruscan civilization." Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th Edition (July 2010): 1.

This entry was the most in-depth look at Etruscan lifestyle. It covered the history of the civilization from it's earliest roots of Asia Minor to the dominance of Rome that befell it. There is great consideration for social-political structure and also valuable information about military life. Religion, art, and architecture comprise the majority of the article. Through art, specifically burial sites, we have come to learn a great deal about Etruscan religion and values. Art was mostly in the forms of wall paintings and sculptures. The purpose was not intrinsic, as much of it details history and seems to honor their gods and goddesses. There is a great influence of Greek style in the art, but Etruscan art had a significant influence on early Roman art, too.

Warden, P. Gregory. "Etruscan Treasures From The Temple And The Tomb,” Veranda 23, no. 3 (April 2009), 44.

This essay is similar to the "Investing" article. It focuses on the immense wealth that Etruscans accumulated, and their desire to take it with them. They had faith in a material afterlife, no doubt. The tombs were adorned with bronze, silver, and rare gold techniques. Their mastery for metalwork is evident as well. The essay does note a slight shift in themes from the beginning of Etruscan civilization to the end. In earlier centuries tombs displayed paintings focused on lively and cheerful events. Later paintings, however, were more focused on death and the afterlife. This shift could be the result of struggles and slow growth as the region was being dominated by the advancing Roman civilization.

Bernard, Nancy Stone, “The Mysterious Etruscans,” Dig 6, no. 3 (March 2004), 6.

This article is a short one-page essay on how we can use artifacts from Etruscan life to tell us about their world and culture. Bernard talks about the importance of writings and inscriptions, along with artifacts like urns, helmets, and jewelry. It relates to the “Investing” essay because it continues with the theme of the afterlife and superstition.

“Etruscan Art,” from Hunt For (2007), retrieved 7 November 2010 from

This website is a quick overview of Etruscan art, it’s different uses, and the significance of it over time. It details many of the same points and facts as the other essays. It was especially useful because it has many images of Etruscan artwork, and it also offers links to other Etruscan related information.

“The Sarcophaugs of Larthia Seianti”, from Popoli Antichi (2003), retrieved 7 November 2010 from

This is the most in-depth analysis of Larthia Seianti that I was able to find. It is originally an Italian article, so it had to be translated. It thoroughly discusses the body position, colors, and portrait of the female subject. It references the mild-manner face of the subject, and how it relates to the shift in burial theme from early to later centuries. It also gives a description of her garments, the moldings on the sarcophagus, and the significance of the other artifacts that were found in the tomb. Overall, this was probably the most helpful in analyzing Larthia Seianti.

No comments: