In 1877 this object, mysterious at first, was found by a peasant who was ploughing a field near Gossolengo. Although its importance wasn’t understood immediately, today it is considered a fundamental tool to understand the Etruscan religion, language and civilisation on the whole and in 1894 it was donated to the Municipal Museum, where it is still preserved.
Dating back to the period between the 2nd ad 1st century B.C., measuring 126 x 76 x 60 millimetres, it isn’t only the reproduction of a bronze sheep’s liver. Engraved by 40 inscriptions, it is a sort of manual for the fore-seer: the divine will, the outcome of a battle or of a deed was interpreted by comparing it to the peculiar signs observed in the still warm liver of the animal sacrificed .
The divination by the fore-seer could affect people’s behaviour.
Its history, function and shape, which is quite modern and up to date, contribute to the extraordinary interest it raises, and not only among researchers .