Amphora and a Hundred Fragments of Bucchero

This conservation project is dedicated to the restoration of an amphora painted in the black figure technique by an unknown Etruscan master. It shows a rare depiction of an Etruscan chariot mounted by a charioteer holding the reins with one foot still resting on the ground. The young charioteer is beardless and semi-naked, covered only by the typical semicircular Etruscan mantle (tebenna).

The scene is repeated on the other side of the amphora but with the charioteer dressed in a short chiton and wielding a long rod to spur the horses. The representation of horse races and athletic competitions often occurs in the pictorial cycles of Etruscan tombs and is also found in pottery imported from Greece. Here the typical Etruscan motif is not only the mantle of the charioteer, but above all the model of the chariot with the sinuous line of the handlebar. Similar artifacts have been found dating to the middle of the sixth century B.C.

More ancient are the hundred or so fragments of pottery, bucchero and ceramics of various manufacture, which are in some cases painted and come from the the Regolini-Galassi tumulus complex in Cerveteri. This archaeological site of extraordinary historical importance and artifact richness is known for its gold artifacts, but these assorted ceramic fragments, scrupulously collected and preserved, are waiting to be studied after their restoration so that they may further our understanding of Etruscan life in Cerveteri.