Collections OnlineGregorian Etruscan MuseumRooms VII and VIII

Necklace with medallions, early 4th cent. BC, cat. 13412

Ring with scarab, late 6th cent. BC, cat. 13174

Pair of cluster earrings, mid 4th cent. BC, cat. 13502-13503

Virtual Visit of Room VII

Virtual Visit of Room VIII

In these two rooms are displayed the gold objects for dress and body decoration made with great technical and creative ability by the Etruscan goldsmiths during the ten centuries of their civilization. A sure taste in the choice of models and precious and semi-precious stones was accompanied by a growing craft skill that made Etruscan jewellery unique and unrepeatable in the ancient world. The most common techniques used were: casting, beating into sheets, creation of threads for the twisting of minute golden strips, finishing with punches or chisel and granulation. This is a special technique, that permitted making balls so tiny as to reach infinitesimal dimensions (dust) that adhered to the sheet of the piece of jewellery with microwelding, creating continuous surfaces or designs. The display follows a chronological order that, from the oldest attestations of the 7th cent. BC (the Gregorian Etruscan Museum has no older examples of jewellery) permits following in time, up to the Roman period, fashions, customs and types of a people that used gold both as wealth to be treasured and as a status symbol. This coincides with what is documented by archaeology and narrated in the famous passage of Diodorus Siculus (8,18,1):"...(the Etruscans) held a sort of record as regards ostentation in their way of living...".