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Cetamura del Chianti

Cetamura del Chianti

A rare glimpse into an ancient Etruscan community that provides evidence for how smaller communities could flourish despite centuries of nearby wars with the Romans.

Series: Cities and Communities of the Etruscans

January 2020
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176 pages | 5.5 x 8.5 | 108 b&w photos, 7 maps |

Expanding the study of Etruscan habitation sites to include not only traditional cities but also smaller Etruscan communities, Cetamura del Chianti examines a settlement that flourished during an exceptional time period, amid wars with the Romans in the fourth to first centuries BCE.

Situated in an ideal hilltop location that was easy to defend and had access to fresh water, clay, and timber, the community never grew to the size of a city, and no known references to it survive in ancient writings; its ancient name isn’t even known. Because no cities were ever built on top of the site, excavation is unusually unimpeded. Intriguing features described in Cetamura del Chianti include an artisans’ zone with an adjoining sanctuary, which fostered the cult worship of Lur and Leinth, two relatively little known Etruscan deities, and ancient wells that reveal the cultural development and natural environment, including the vineyards and oak forests of Chianti, over a period of some six hundred years. Deeply enhancing our understanding of an intriguing economic, political, and cultural environment, this is a compelling portrait of a singular society.

  • List of Illustrations
  • Foreword
  • Preface and Acknowledgments
  • Album of Maps
  • Chapter 1. Introduction
  • Chapter 2. Early and Middle Etruscan Periods (Seventh–Fourth Centuries BCE)
    • Bucchero Pottery
    • A Ritual Crevice
  • Chapter 3. Late Etruscan Phase I (300–150 BCE)
    • Two Wells
    • The Artisans’ Quarter
    • Structure K: Making Brick and Tile
    • Structures B and C: Water Management and Textile Production
    • Structure J: A Workers’ Platform
    • Structure N: Iron Working
    • Pottery: A Typology
    • Artifacts in the Artisans’ Quarter
    • Fauna and Flora
    • Conclusion
  • Chapter 4. Late Etruscan Phase II (ca. 150–75/50 BCE)
    • Structures A, B, and D
    • Artifacts from Structures A and B
    • Building L: The Sanctuary of the Etruscan Artisans
    • Votive Features of Building L
  • Chapter 5. The Wells of Cetamura: From Etruscan to Roman
    • Well #2 (Structure M), on Zone II
    • Well #1, on Zone I
  • Chapter 6. Roman Cetamura (ca. 50 BCE to Late Antiquity)
    • The Settlement of a Roman Veteran
    • Baths and Production
    • The Early Roman Empire
    • The Later Roman Empire
  • Chapter 7. Cetamura as a Community
  • Chapter 8. Cetamura after Antiquity
  • Appendix. A Timeline of History for Cetamura del Chianti
  • Notes
  • References
  • Index

Nancy Thomson de Grummond
Tallahassee, Florida

De Grummond is M. Lynette Thompson Distinguished Research Professor of Classics at Florida State University, director of excavations at Cetamura del Chianti, and coeditor of The Religion of the Etruscans and Caere.


“[Cetamura del Chianti is] a model introduction to a small site and to the scholarly task of drawing connections between the micro and the macro...Cetamura is a case study of an artisan community and its infrastructure that could usefully inform more exploration of this phenomenon in Etruria...this is a book and a site with much to offer.”
Ancient History Bulletin

“This volume presents evidence from Cetamura in an accessible manner. It is best suited for students new to Etruscan archaeology and helps to broaden the discipline’s scope by focusing on a non-elite, rural community. Moreover, this volume underscores the value of rigorous palaeobotanical research.”
The Classical Review

“Nothing quite like this book exists. A detailed study of a small community which has been the focus of continuous excavation since 1973 provides a future model for the analysis of similar settlements. The forceful argument for the association of industrial and religious concerns at Cetamura is convincing and effective. One of the significant contributions of this work is its presentation of botanical evidence recovered from recent excavations, through which we can glimpse aspects of ancient regional viticulture. Given Cetamura's topographic situation within the Chianti region, this is indeed remarkable.”
Anthony Tuck, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Director of Excavations at Poggio Civitate (Murlo)


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This book may also be available on the following library platforms; check with your local library:
3M Cloud Library/bibliotheca