If you have already read some of my past pieces I am sure you are now aware of Etruscans history and culture but, in case you didn’t, here is another example of location deeply shaped and influenced by this mysterious yet relevant civilization.
Cerveteri, a small-size city in front of the Tyrrhenian sea 42 away kilometres from Rome, was an important urban centre during Etruscan times. Its history is as ancient as it gets and many stories (legends?) about its inhabitants developed during the years. It is believed that people from Cerveteri were well-known for their value and their spirit of justice, underlined by the fact they never wanted to get involved with piracy. They had good diplomatic relations, especially with the Hellenic world: Cerveteri, in fact, was the only Etruscan town that delivered a gift (thesaurus) to the Delphi sanctuary, a sign of strong ties for the time.
Cerveteri lost its importance and relevance as the years went by, but what still keeps it on (your) map is the Necropolis of Bandiataccia, a 400 hectares area where over a thousand tombs are situated in typical Etruscan mounds. The location has been declared Unesco Heritage Site and it is the largest site of its kind in the Mediterranean area. Inside of it there are two main roads, along which the visitors find the tombs. Entering one of them is like entering a house: rooms and corridors fill the spaces, with frescos and bas-relieves all around, making it clear how big of a deal the afterlife was for this unique civilization.
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