Etruscan civilization, highest civilization in Italy before the rise of Rome. The core of the territory of the Etruscans, known as Etruria to the Latins, was northwest of the Tiber River, now in modern Tuscany and part of Umbria. The Latins called the people Etrusci or Tusci, and the Greeks called them Tyrrhenoi [whence Tyrrhenian Sea]; they called themselves Rasenna.
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