- This technical term is applied in two senses to Etruscan art and material culture. In the broader sense, hybridity refers to the combination of distinct elements from different sources of identity (Etruscan, Greek, Phoenician, Eastern), which comprise some Etruscan works of art. For instance a bucchero cup may have a form including a high-pierced handle that dates back as a local tradition to the Bronze Age, a distinct Etruscan form of manufacture, the shiny burnished surface of the bucchero, a series of Eastern motifs, and an Etruscan inscription of donation. All these hybrid forms are joined together to form a recognizable Etruscan object that can nevertheless be analytically broken apart to reveal the component parts. In the more particular sense, Etruscan artists often selected hybrid forms for depiction in art, notably sphinxes, centaurs, satyrs, winged humans, and other creatures that combined elements from different natural sources. This choice was probably for ritual reasons since these hybrid forms were probably considered liminal forms on the boundary of this world.
Historical Dictionary of the Etruscans. Simon K. F. Stoddart.