Need something to watch this weekend – try this BBC
They were big before the Romans were
The beginnings of the Etruscan civilization is lost in prehistory. Its earliest inscriptions appeared at around 700 B.C.
They were great sculptors
Etruscans are known to have been skilled with making terra cotta artwork in the form of religious and funerary statues. In addition, they were skilled bronze sculptors, creating the famous bronze Chimera.
They were the earliest Roman leaders
The mythical founders of Rome were Romulus and Remus, who came from Alba Longa (populated by Trojans from Asia Minor). However, Rome started off being ruled by a succession of seven kings – each one an Etruscan.
They were a group of city-states
The Etruscan society was grouped much like ancient Greek society – the Etruscans lived in a group of city-states. Legends say that, somewhere between 600 and 500 B.C., the Etruscans formed a loose alliance called the Etruscan League for mutual economic gains.
They started the temple building
Romans are known throughout history for their temples. However, this is likely something that they got from the Etruscans, with a few changes. The major way to tell the difference between a Roman-style temple and an Etruscan-style temple? Look at the roof – if there are a bunch of statues on top, it’s Etruscan.
Military campaigns were used to gather resources
The Etruscans used the summer as a time to wage military campaigns to gather wealth and resources from the surrounding areas. It is likely that they captured important enemies and ransomed them at high rates.
They were eventually assimilated by the cultures around them
Eventually, the Etruscans began to be defeated and absorbed. From the south, the growing forces of Rome pushed north. Simultaneously, the Celtic peoples to the north pressed south. Eventually, Etruria, and the rest of the Etruscans were conquered.