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Da Etruschi a Romani. Scelte linguistiche, epigrafiche e identitarie nell'Etruria del II-I secolo a.C.

Being Etruscans, becoming Romans. Epigraphy, language, identity in 2nd-1st century BC Etruria

Etruria had a long-standing epigraphic tradition, resulting, in some cities, in a massive production of inscriptions. In numbers, Etruscan epigraphy has no parallels in Italy until the first decades of the I century BC. Funerary inscriptions form the bulk of late-Etruscan epigraphic evidence, and show an ever increasing presence of elements borrowed from the Roman epigraphic habit, including the Latin alphabet and language. Nonetheless, the transition from Etruscan to Roman epigraphy was not a straightforward process, but it took many different forms, varying from city to city, from social class to social class, from family to family. Reasons underlying individual choices are not always understandable, but sometimes they can shed some light on events unfolding during the lifetime of individuals mentioned in inscriptions. In some Etruscan cities, for some decades, it was possible to choose between Etruscan or Roman epigraphic habit, alphabet, and language; what resulted can be highly meaningful for understanding matters of cultural and political identity in the decades immediately preceding and following the incorporation of all the Etruscans into full Roman citizenship.

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