Archaeological Museum of Bologna

Museo Civico Archeologico
Via dell'Archiginnasio 2 - 40124 Bologna

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Via de' Musei 8 – 40124 Bologna
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Collections / Ricerca / Etruscan collection: Felsinean phase


During the VI century BC in Etruria occur great social, political and economic transformations. The process of formation of the cities, within which the power of the merchants joins and then replaces that of the aristocratic groups, ends.
The presence of Greeks and Carthaginians in the Tyrrhenian Sea, allocated as well as in Sicily and Magna Graecia, in Corsica and Sardinia, leads to a progressive loss of the Etruscan dominion on the sea. In Etruria starts therefore a process of reorganization, which aims to establish new and safer commercial routes, able to guarantee the contacts with Greece and with the transalpine world. While the cities of the Tyrrhenian coast suffer a decline, those of the interior are enhanced and included in a complex system of commercial exchanges that now exploit the Adriatic and the Po Valley territory. Here the preexisting centers are reorganized and Bologna becomes a big city, the center of a dense commercial trade and, as the latin sources hand down us, the most important town in the Po Valley (princeps Etruriae) known with the name of Felsina.
In the crucial points of the territory are founded new cities with diversified economic functions but well integrated with each other: Spina, an Adriatic port in which coexist Etruscans, Greeks and other Italic peoples; Marzabotto, in the Rhine Valley, preferential way towards the Tyrrhenian Etruria, exceptional example of planned city with handicraft and commercial vocation; Mantova, bridge for trade with the transalpine area and center of agricultural and handicraft activities.
The extraordinary commercial organization and the federal structure of the etrusco-padanis centers not only promote the economic and social development of the city communities, but contribute to their cultural and artistic education, thanks to the diffusion of objects, ideologies and trends imported from Greece.

Exhibition rooms | Room X - Etruscan Bologna