The nationalist associations of Etruscan material culture and its consequent value for the collector, second only to Greek material, have made Etruscan material subject to some classic cases of forgery. The forger was aided by the eclectic quality of Etruscan art and varying interpretations of each age in defining the essence of Etruscan culture. In hindsight, forgeries reveal much about how different ages have viewed the Etruscans. Classic cases of forgery, so far revealed, include the Etruscan terracotta warriors of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Cerveteri (Caere) sarcophagus of the British Museum in London. The warriors were forged by the Ricardi brothers and definitively shown by chemical tests and anomalies in manufacturing techniques to be forgeries some 30 years after their first display in New York. The Cerveteri sarcophagus was shown to be an eclectic piece bearing on its lid an inscription from a brooch in the Louvre, as well as anachronistic and incongruous elements in its form and design, and most notably incorrect treatment of male (complete nudity) and female (clothing) bodies. It was probably forged by the Pennelli brothers and sold on to Castellani, in whose collection it came to the British Museum. In addition to these classic cases, frequent forgeries have been found of mirrors, bronzes, and pottery.
   See also RICHTER, Gisela.

Historical Dictionary of the Etruscans. .

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