Tomb of the Leopards

This tomb dates back to 473 BC. and it is one of the main ones of the Monterozzi Necropolis in Tarquinia.
The name of each tomb derives from one of the frescoes on its walls, in this case, two leopards depicted around a tree with their jaws wide open. The Tomb of the Leopards was discovered during an excavation campaign in 1875, it measures 3.52 x 3.3 x 2.16 in height.

The paintings

The tomb is covered by a double-pitched roof, the two pitches are decorated with parallel rows of white, red and green checkers, the central beam is bordered on both sides by straight lines of the same colors while in the center there is a series of circles reds and greens.

On the right wall you can admire a dancer dressed in the traditional Tebenna – typical dress of the Etruscan culture -, holding a cup with one hand, and two players. These three characters are “The Three Musicians”. The player in the center, dressed in a yellow and blue dress, is an auleta, or a player of aulòs – a wind instrument -, while the one on his right, with a red robe edged with green and yellow, plays a zither. The scene of the three musicians is probably the most famous image of the Etruscan world.

The central wall, the most important of each tomb, depicts diners during a banquet: three married couples lying on twin beds while sipping wine. The bride and groom all have their heads decorated with wreaths of myrtle branches, the men have a dark complexion and are bare-chested, while the women – two blondes and a brunette – have a much lighter complexion and are dressed in elegant and refined clothes. . The man at the far right of this scene is holding an egg, a symbol of rebirth.

Above the banquet scene two imposing leopards and some olive trees are depicted. The animals are portrayed with their jaws wide open.

Scroll to Top