History of the Classical World (2017/2018)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Attilio Mastrocinque
Attilio Mastrocinque
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
First half of Semester 2 , Second half of Semester 2

Lesson timetable

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Learning outcomes

A comparison between the Roman and the Etruscan culture will be proposed in the centuries of interaction and, later on, in those of war. Data proving reciprocal cultural influences in the 6th and 5th centuries will be discussed in a critical manner, and a particular focus will be deserved to the Tarquinian period.
The period of wars between Romans and Etruscans will be not dealt with by means of a basic approach to Livy, but by proposing a series of insights particularly interesting in the case of archaeological documents which contribute to the historical reconstruction.
The phase between the Social War and the Augustan Age will be another special focus because in this period the Etruscans became Roman citizens and the law of their estates and their slaves became the Roman law.
Students will be able to evaluate autonomously some testimonies to Roman history by means of comparisons between different authors or between authors and different kinds of documentation, in order to evaluate the reliability of each document.
Students are expected to improve their communication skill by expressing their opinions or even their doubts concerning the dealt topics and by receiving answers and directions about how to organize their speech.
Also the understanding skill should be improved by means of a critical reading of historical texts and the study of images of monuments and other iconographies.
At the end of the teaching activities a student should be able to show that he has understood the most important problems discussed in the classes, that he is able to analyse in a critical manner both the sources and the iconographies taken into account. A student should explain this following a logical series of points, clearly and on the basis of the fundamental documents.


The Etruscans and Rome
1) First: classes devoted to selected topics;
2) Second: Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Roman Antiquities (ed. by F. Donadi and Elisabetta Guzzo, Torino, Einaudi, 2005, or another edition with commentary). Knowledge of the original, Greek text is not mandatory.
3) Third: knowledge of passages from classical authors and monuments which will be read and commented during the course;
4) The use of a historical atlas is recommended.

Further readings (their reading is not mandatory):
M.Torelli, Storia degli Etruschi, Bari, Laterza 1990; M.Sordi, I rapporti romano-ceriti e l'origine della civitas sine suffragio, Rome, L'Erma di Bretschneider 1960; W.V. Harris, Rome in Etruria and Umbria, Oxford 1971

Didactic method.
The course is divided into two parts:
- the first consists in the classes, devoted to the above mentioned topics. Students will be provided with images and texts thanks to powerpoint files with images of archaeological documents and historical texts, which will be at their disposal also online.
- the second part consists in the personal study of the above mentioned works.
At the end of each lesson a short debate is possible in order to clarify what could have been eventually difficult to understand.
Students who are unable to attend every class may use the E-Learning site of the University of Verona, where they may find the recorded lessons, the images and texts which are necessary for their study.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
Sordi, Marta I rapporti romano-ceriti e l'origine della civitas sine suffragio L'Erma di Bretschneider 1960 La lettura è facoltativa
Dionigi di Alicarnasso Le antichità romane Einaudi 2005 Lo studio di quest'opera è obbligatorio. Possono essere usate anche altre edizioni di Dionigi.
Harris, William V. Rome in Etruria and Umbria Clarendon Press 1971 La lettura è facoltativa
Torelli, Mario Storia degli Etruschi, Laterza 1990 La lettura è facoltativa

Assessment methods and criteria

oral exam. Questions will be posed in order to ascertain what learning and knowing level is reached. Eventually, the questions could go further in deep by focussing on texts and/or monuments discussed during the course.