Encyclopedia of Things We Lost Forever – Day 28: Etruscan

Banksy for the Wimp: Encyclopedia of Things We Lost Forever


Etruscan was the unique language of an ancient Italian civilization. This civilization rose in prehistoric times and endured until its assimilation into the Roman Republic in the late 4th century BC. Research on the mitochondrial DNA of Etruscan skeletons suggests that the Etruscan culture developed locally and was not the immediate consequence of migration despite the fact that the Etruscan alphabet was based on the Greek. They are most closely related to the original people of Anatolia.

We don’t know much about this particular unique culture since our ability of understanding the Etruscan language was lost and historians have no original literature, no religious or philosophical text to study. But we do know that at their time the Etruscan were a highly developed culture since the city of Rome and thus the nucleus for the later Roman Empire was founded in Etruscan tradition. Their ideas didn’t die.