7. Etruscan Gold Lion Pendant, USCARC 7519, c. 650-600 B.C.E.
The Etruscans were inhabitants of ancient Italy, Etruria, who spoke a non-Indo-European language and were dominant in the areas of modern-day Tuscany, Latium, Emilia-Romagna and Umbria before the ascendancy of the Romans. In creating jewelry from gold they used a technique called granulation, the creation of patterns made up of minute granules of gold. The pendant depicted here is smaller than a credit card and has approximately four gold granules per millimeter. It is one of the finest pieces in USC’s own Archaeological Research Collection.
Photograph by Bruce Zuckerman and Marilyn Lundberg, West Semitic Research. Courtesy University of Southern California Archaeological Research Collection.