The Tarquin name originated from the Etruscan family (translated to mean ‘Lord’) which governed Rome. It can be found on the Bible Timeline Poster with World History around 604 BC. According to a legend recorded by the historian Livy, a Corinthian Noble moved to Tarquinii, Etruria and wed into one of the head Etruscan families. He then had two sons Aruns and Lucumo. Lucumo wed Tanaquil, who was a daughter of the Etruscan nobility and considered a prophetess of high esteem. By her he was persuaded to go to Rome and seek a higher position. There he changed his name to Lucius Tarquinius Priscus.
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With the help of his wife and after some plotting Tarquinius Priscus became the ruler of Rome and began the influence of foreign reign. Some good did come from this in that it enhanced the society with power and strength which allowed for much growth. The Etruscans brought about the royal insignia that were the symbols of power meant to give the king more respect and renown. These symbols were a golden crown, ivory scepter, and chair call the ‘curule chair’, a white robe sewn with a purple lining and twelve ‘lictors’ (royal servants that held rods (‘faces’) around an ax). This was to show an unquestionable authority from the king.
In addition to this Etruria brought about the art of haruspices (soothsayers) who proclaimed the words of the Gods. These people had the duty of deciding the God’s influence by watching lightning, nature, studying the intestines of sacrificed creatures and going as far as to observing sacred chickens while they ate. These ‘soothsayers’ were meant to be more knowledgeable about such things than the Roman augurs, and it is thought that the Senate supported them.
Even the buildings and structures of Rome show the workings of Etruscan knowledge. The size and strength of their works mostly in the walls and sewers that were built during that time exhibit the hands of grand and well versed construction workers. The ‘Tuscan Street’ (‘vicus Tuscus’) that spread into the Forum kept the imprint of their part in the cities of Rome.
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