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The Etruscan Aphrodite

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The Etruscan Aphrodite

Mendelsohn, David (2001) The Etruscan Aphrodite. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Most of the Etruscan heroes and deities depicted in Etruscan visual arts were borrowed from the Greek mythological corpus complete with divine attributes and iconography: Heracles wields his club, Athena, her aegis, and Perseus pursues Medusa. These are all standard images with few changes apparent in the myths and their representations. An exception, however, is Aphrodite (referred to as Turan by the Etruscans), who shows considerable Etruscanization in her donning of Etruscan clothing and adoption of Etruscan attributes. These indicate Etruscan mythological and artistic traditions and reflect Etruscan culture, especially the world of Etruscan women. In Etruscan vase painting, images of Turan are found in scenes of the Judgement of Paris and Aphrodite and Adonis as well as in depictions with the greater Greek pantheon but represent only one segment of a diverse array of mythological themes. An examination of mythological depictions on objects belonging to women shows Turan appearing on a large number in a variety of contexts: specifically Etruscan, Greek mythological; and alone. Various media are used to depict these Greek and Etruscan mythological themes, but the majority appear on vases, wall paintings and mirrors. Bronze mirrors represent the best examples of the mixture of Greek myths and Etruscan religious and ritual customs within the context of these female-owned objects. The appearance of Turan and/or her attendants on such female paraphernalia can be reconciled with the romantic cycle of a mature Etruscan woman: passion, love, marriage and childbirth.

Divisions:Concordia University > School of Graduate Studies
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Mendelsohn, David
Pagination:viii, 112 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Theses (M.A.)
Program:School of Graduate Studies
Date:2001
Thesis Supervisor(s):Francis, Jane
ID Code:1568
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:27 Aug 2009 13:20
Last Modified:08 Dec 2010 10:21
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