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Florence’s most ancient past is tied to the Etruscan civilization. It is known that the city was founded by the Romans, but the surrounding settlements were Etruscan and in many cases, the traces are still highly visible.

giardino archeologico2An Etruscan itinerary in Florence must start from the National Archeologic Museum in Palazzo alla Crocetta. This museum became the seat of the Medici and Lorraine archaeological collections, and also preserves an important Egyptian section. As for the Etruscans, on display in the Archaeological Museum are such masterpieces as the Chimera of Arezzo, the Orator and the Minerva.
Many of the works are gold and pottery found in excavations. The museum regularly organizes interesting exhibitions dedicated to various civilizations and different periods. The Etruscan tombs have been placed in the beautiful garden, shaded by lovely trees and flowering shrubs.

Again in the town is a small, delightful little-known museum, Casa Siviero: Rodolfo Siviero, a true art lover, lived in this villa on the Arno River. Here the works range from the Etruscan civilization to Italian 20th-century painters.
Connected to the Archaeological Museum is Villa Corsini, in the locality of Castello, a few hundred meters from Villa la Petraia. For years, Villa Corsini was used as a deposit for the Archaeological Museum, but it now has a permanent exhibition of antiques, as well as being itself a beautiful and rare example of a baroque manor house. Also in the plains between Florence and Sesto Fiorentino is a beautiful example of a tholos tomb, the Montagnola Tomb. A wealth of grave goods has been found in this well-preserved environment as well; it can be visited on Saturday and Sunday morning until October 27th, 2017 (reservation required, ph. +39 331 3447457).

And finally there is the city of Etruscan origin: Fiesole, on the hill north of Florence, founded in the fifth century BC. The town bears witness to various phases in its past, but the Etruscan remains are powerful and interesting. For example, the boundary wall both in the northern and eastern sections can be admired simply by walking. The hill of San Francesco, where the Franciscan monastery with the annexed church now stands, also has Etruscan origins. But that was the first group settlement of the local population. And again there is the beautiful archaeological area, which is also the most visited part of the city: the thermal baths, theatre, and temple. The archaeological area with the Civic Museum is a fascinating testimonial to the area of the Etruscan monuments, which was later developed during the Roman era. The visit is highly recommended both for the natural beauty of the place and for the monuments. The Museum has some valuable artefacts, from vessels to grave goods.

An Etruscan pathway can be followed if you are fond of hiking.

Published: 1/10/2018

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