* Etruria! next. l. 291. Etruria may perhaps vie with China itself in the antiquity of its arts. The times of its greatest splendour were prior to the foundations of Rome, and the reign of one of its best princes, Janus, was the oldest epoch the Romans knew. The earliest historians speak of the Etruscans as being then of high antiquity, most probably a colony from Phoenicia, to which a Pelasgian colony acceded, and was united soon after Deucalion's flood. The peculiar character of their earthern vases consists in the admi∣rable beauty, simplicity, and diversity of forms, which continue the best models of taste to the artists of the present times; and in a species of non-vitreous encaustic painting, which was reckoned, even in the time of Pliny, among the lost arts of antiquity, but which has lately been recovered by the ingenuity and industry of Mr. Wedgwood. It is supposed that the principal manufactories were about Nola, at the foot of Vesuvius; for it is in that neighbourhood that the greatest quantities of antique vases have been found; and it is said that the general taste of the inhabitants is apparently influenced by them; insomuch that strangers coming to Naples, are commonly struck with the diversity and elegance even of the most ordinary vases for common uses. See D'Hancar∣ville's preliminary discourses to the magnificent collection of Etruscan vases, published by Sir William Hamilton.


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