Its analysis is highly sophisticated, its language often approaches the poetic, yet the reader may well become lost in the welter of details about Reconstruction in each state of the old Confederacy, which takes up the middle two hundred pages of the book. In this paper I want to elucidate some of the key themes that unite Black Reconstruction, and which help to explain why nearly eight decades after its publication, it remains one of the landmarks of American historical scholarship.
Through the Etruscanning VR applicationmany more objects are shown in a digital way. One of the most splendid objects that is shown in this VR application is a large golden disc fibulathat is shown on the body of the deceased princess that was buried in the Regolini-Galassi tomb.
Golden disc fibula from the Regolini-Galassi tomb, dated BC photo: Vatican Museums Only a few similar objects are known see two images below.
Maurizio Sannibale, the Reconstruction revisited of the Museo Gregoriano Etruscowhere this large disc fibula resides, considers this object as a symbol of the transition from life the top Reconstruction revisited to the afterlife the bottom curved element over the rivers the middle bars that separate the world and the underworld.
Three of them are nice but small disc fibulae in bronze, that resemble another small disc fibula in gold in the British Museum, probably coming from Etruria.
Etruscan disc fibula in gold, dated BC photo: British Museum However, these disc fibulae from the Allard Pierson Museum reveal an important secret. As can be seen on the photograph below, all three fibulae are very similar in shape, structure and size to the one in British Museum.
Three Etruscan disc fibulae from the Allard Pierson Museum photo: Christie Ray Only the fibula on the left see image above has a middle part that depicts the river and has a slightly different bow.
All three fibulae carry the same decoration see images below as the one in British Museum: When we compare these four small disc fibulae with the two bigger ones that are depicted above, we see a striking analogy of the same symbols that appear on the same parts with very similar shapes.
If we assume that the top disc depicts the world, this reveals the known depiction of the world surrounded by water on all sides, which is the first world model from the Bronze Age.
Close-up view of left disc fibula photo: Christie Ray Close-up view of middle disc fibula photo: Allard Pierson Museum Detail of middle disc fibula with swastikas photo: Allard Pierson Museum Closer inspection also reveals that the middle and the right fibula had also a horizontal bar attached on the small bow that protrudes just below the disc see image above.
In other words, we can assume quite safely that all fibulae shown here had a horizontal bar. This makes the similarity even more striking.
Note the horizontal bar probably detached easily as the surface of the small bow, on which it was soldered, was very small, hence proving that such fibulae were used for funeral purposes only.
Based on this knowledge, we can identify many more disc fibulae that have the same characteristics: Below, we show one from British Museum, which is older than the other fibulae shown above. Disc fibula, dated BC, from Italy photo: British Museum Many more fibulae can be identified if we allow a slightly wider variety of depictions of the same symbols.
British Museum So, what has this to do with the virtual reconstruction of the Regolini-Galassi tomb? We have proposed two hypotheses concerning the placement of the fibula on the body of the deceased: From the analysis above, we can conclude that the Regolini-Galassi disc fibula is not a decorative object, adorning the body of the deceased, but relates to an old symbol that seems to carry a consistent message of transition to afterlife, as the decoration and shape of these fibulae remain nearly identical over several centuries.
When trying to interpret this particular shape and decoration, we can make the link to the belief of the Etruscans that dying was being reborn. As each of the three parts of the fibulae carries the symbol of water, they probably also stress that water is the symbol of life, from birth to death.
In this sense, these fibulae probably can be compared to an Iron age bronze fibula from a grave in Lorestan, Iran, on which a woman is giving birth. Lorestan fibula, Iran, dated BC photo: Louvre museum, Paris To conclude, we can state that the Regolini-Galassi disc fibula has a much higher chance of being positioned on the abdomen than being positioned on the face, not only because of size of the object but especially because of the symbolism of the object.
This blog is part of the Etruscanning project, that is being funded with support from the European Commission. This blog reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.This paper contains a review of sparse matrix methods for open-loop wavefront estimation in astronomical adaptive optics systems with a large number of degrees of freedom.
community corner Sharecropping Revisited For almost a century after Reconstruction, sharecropping and tenant farming replaced slavery with serfdom.
Gemeinschaft Revisited: A Critique and Reconstruction of the Community Concept Steven Brint.
University of California, Riverside. Search for more papers by this author. Steven Brint. University of California, Riverside. Search for more papers by this author.
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