This lecture focuses on the interrelationships of mythic images among Italic cultures in 4th-century BCE Italy. A basic assumption is that images of myth appear because of interest in the myth depicted. This seems self-evident, yet many scholars in the past have found it difficult to accept deep knowledge of myth and literature among the non-Greeks of Italy, be they Etruscans or Italic people of South Italy. Unlike Attic vases, most Italic productions were made within 100 km of their find places, so the artisans who produced them were well aware of their markets. Some myths and moments from myths seem to have resonated broadly with Italic people in ways they did not with Greeks. This lecture explores several Greek myths that appear in both Etruscan and South Italian imagery but do not appear in surviving imagery from Greece; it addresses the question of why these choices might have been made.
This is a Martha Sharp Joukowsky Lecture, sponsored by the Archaeological Institute of America. Reception follows the lecture.
Dr. Thomas H. Carpenter, Ping Institute, Ohio University