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date: 06 December 2022

Poggio Civitatelocked

Poggio Civitatelocked

  • D. W. R. Ridgway


(Murlo), 24 km. (15 mi.) south of Siena, is the site of an anonymous early *Etruscan complex in the territory of *Clusium. Excavation (1966 onwards) has revealed an *orientalizing building, constructed between 675 and 650 bce, accidentally destroyed by fire c.610 and soon replaced by a similar Archaic complex which was dismantled and ritually obliterated c.530. Both phases are exceptionally rich in architectural terracottas; those of the earlier building combine with their counterparts at *Acquarossa to add a new (and fundamentally indigenous) dimension to previous knowledge of 7th-cent. Etruscan architecture. The excavators identify the orientalizing and Archaic complexes as ‘meeting halls’ of a religious and political (federal) nature. Others prefer to see the Archaic building as the private ‘palace’ of a local aristocrat; specific features of its plan have suggested direct derivation from Near Eastern models, and the decorative programme of its frieze-plaques includes the earliest representation in Italy of the characteristically Near Eastern reclining banquet.


  • Ancient Geography
  • Roman Material Culture

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