The images you'll see as you scroll down to the current text are all part of the story telling in my novel, Realms of Gold:Ritual to Romance.

Bianca Caldwell, pen name, Bianca Fiore, is a writer for an art magazine. In each of her monthly stories she describes an object used in ancient ritual.

Etruscan Gold Diadem

Etruscan civilization, Gold diadem (crown). From Spina, Ferrara Province, Museo Archeologico Nazionale (Archaeological Museum)

Etruscan Gold: Scarab gold ring

Scarab gold ring, from Cerveteri (Lazio). Etruscan civilization, 4th Century BC.

Etruscan Gold: Gold earring, from Cerveteri (Lazio)

Gold earring, from Cerveteri (Lazio). Etruscan civilization, 4th Century BC. Artwork-location: Rome, Museo Nazionale Etrusco Di Villa Giulia (Villa Giulia National Museum, Archaeological Museum)

Etruscan Gold: Carnelian scarab gold ring, from Cerveteri (Lazio),

ITALY : Scarab gold ring, from Cerveteri (Lazio). Etruscan civilization, 4th Century BC. (Photo by DeAgostini/Getty Images)

Etruscan Gold: Gold Hair Clips for Plaits, from Cerveteri, Lazio

Etruscan civilization,7th century b.C. Goldsmithery. Gold hair clips for plaits. From Cerveteri, Lazio Region, Italy. Artwork-location: Rome, Museo Nazionale Etrusco Di Villa Giulia (Villa Giulia National Museum, Archaeological Museum)

Etruscan Gold: Gold and amber necklace, from Cerveteri (Lazio)

The Etruscans were regarded by the ancients as addicted to luxury.  If we consider the period from the ninth to the seventh century BC with the tombs " princely " found in Cerveteri , Palestrina ( Praeneste ) , Pontecagnano Vetulonia and we actually believe that the flaunting of wealth was a widespread practice in the rich Etruscan nobility who obviously could not afford a large class employee and as a result a significant economic surplus that was hoarded with objects of personal adornment 

Gold and amber necklace, from Cerveteri (Lazio) Etruscan Civilization, 7th Century BC. Artwork-location: Città Del Vaticano, Vatican Museums, Etruscan Museum

Excavations at Poggio Colla

Etruscan Gold Diadem

Poggio Colla is an Etruscan archaeological site located near the town of Vicchio in Tuscany, Italy. Poggio Colla was inhabited by the early 7th century BCE. The settlement was "violently" destroyed in the late 3rd century BCE and rebuilt in the Hellenistic period

The first excavations of Poggio Colla were directed by Francesco Nicosia from 1968 to 1972. Excavations at the site have revealed fortifications, a possible temple, and a necropolis.

Etruscan Pendants

Archaeological evidence suggests that Poggio Colla was occupied from as early as 650 B.C.E. until at least 187 B.C.E. The site centers on the acropolis, a roughly rectangular plateau of one and a half acres at the summit of Poggio Colla. Excavations have found strong evidence that the acropolis was a sanctuary and have identified a building and an altar associated with the structure. The building’s form evolved from a modest hut-like structure in the seventh century B.C.E. to a monumental complex with stone foundations and tile roofs by the time of its destruction in the second century B.C.E. [...]

Sheet-gold earrings from the gold cache, dating from the fourth-third centuries B.C.
A highlight of the items found is the stunning deposit of gold jewelry, one of the few examples of Etruscan gold found outside of a tomb. Beyond the rarity and pristine condition of these pieces lies the fact that this jewelry was most likely a votive gift from a woman who visited the sanctuary.  

A gold cache in situ.
A gold ring found under an upside-down architectural block capping an
underground chamber (as yet unexcavated), which may be part of a
ritual dedication.

Etruscan Gold Earrings

From the Temple and the Tomb, a collection of 300 funerary and devotional pieces from the Florence Archaeological Museum

Etruscan Gold trumpet-shaped earrings with relief decoration

Gold trumpet-shaped earrings with relief decoration, Etruscan, Classical period, circa 5th-4th century BC Metropolitan Museum

Etruscan Gold Disc with Bees

Gold Disc with Bees, 700-600 BCE. Collection of Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University


Openwork ribbons filled with wire bands, bosses, scrolls. Probably from Vetulonia Ca. 1st 1-4 of the 7th cent. BC

American Library in Paris Book Award

On Friday 15 November 2013, the first annual American Library in Paris Book Award was given to Embers of War: The Fall of an Empire and the Making of America's Vietnam, by Fredrik Logevall Logevall is a professor at Cornell University. His book also won the Pulitzer prize.

Realms of Gold:Ritual to Romance, is pictured front row left. I am honored that my novel was among the accepted nominations.

Realms of Gold, Ritual to Romance, has now been officially accepted by the Musée du Pays Châtillonnais


Terry Stanfill’s novel, Realms of Gold, Ritual to Romance, has now been  accepted officially by the Musée du Pays Châtillonnais and will be offered for sale in the Museum bookshop. 

The Trésor de Vix  includes the immense bronze Krater (South Italy circa 510 B.C.)  an object used in ritual  for the mixing wine with water.  The great vessel was discovered in 1953 in the tomb of a Celtic woman/(circa 500 B. C) along with her magnificent gold diadem-torque.  The Treasure is of Vix is now on display in the Musée du Pays Châtillonnais once the abbey of Notre-Dame de Châtillon. founded in the 12th century by Bernard of Clairvaux and rebuilt in the 17th and 18th centuries. 

From left to right, MaryLou Boone, Robin Tait, Vigdis, Madame Fries. Dr. Robert Fries. President de Les Amis du Musee. Terry Stanfill, Dennis Stanfill, Jane Simpson, Georgianna Erskine

Le groupe de visiteurs (le couple Stanfill était accompagné par Tait Robin, avocat, et son épouse Vigdis, peintre, et de quelques amis) a été guidé dans sa visite par Patricia Janeux, conservatrice adjointe. Au fil des salles, Terry Stanfill et ses concitoyens ont découvert dans le détail les éléments essentiels du cratère et de son environnement ainsi que l’exposition temporaire qui a été spécialement prolongée pour cette visite.

Les visiteurs ont découvert dans le détail les éléments essentiels du cratère. Photo Bernard Martin

Terry Stanfill, écrivaine américaine, est venue découvrir au musée du Pays châtillonnais le cratère de Vix, élément central de son roman Les Royaumes dorés.

C’est une visite un peu particulière qui s’est déroulée au musée du Pays châtillonnais – Trésor de Vix. À l’invitation de Robert Fries, président de l’association des Amis du musée du Pays châtillonnais, Terry Stanfill, écrivaine américaine, accompagnée par son mari Dennis, est venue découvrir un élément clé de son roman Les Royaumes dorés sous-titré Du rite à l’amour : le cratère de Vix. L’ouvrage, traduit en français par Thierry Boucquey, rend compte de la quête de Bianca Calwell, de son obsession d’écrivaine pour retrouver les origines du cratère. Elle est accompagnée par son ami archéologue et cette traque les a conduits à Venise, New York, au sud de l’Italie pour s’achever à Châtillon-sur-Seine.

Cette machine à remonter le temps a été saluée par de nombreux lecteurs dont Eric T. Haskell, professeur d’études françaises et d’humanités à Scripps College, au Claremont University Center, en Californie.


Etruscan Gold Granulation

The Etruscan have the most astonishing examples of granulation, a technique consisting in soldering small metal granules to a metal sheet for decoration purposes. They mastered this technique so well that even with a 100x magnifier it isn't possible to see soldering remains between the metal sheet and the granule! it looks like it is simply resting, nevertheless 2600 years old pieces prove that the joint is perfectly resistant!

Etruscan Gold "bullae"

Hollow pendants like these, called "bullae," contained protective charms or perfume and were worn as amulets, especially by children. A stopper at the top, held in place by a chain or cord, secured the contents. The heart-shaped bodies of these Etruscan "bullae" are decorated with detailed palmettes and tendrils worked in repoussé and has intricate smooth and twisted wire applied to the surface. Etruscan, 5th century BC

Etruscan. Gold ear-ring with a female head

Etruscan Gold ear-ring formed of a hollow tube with a ring of beaded wire at one end and a female head at the other. 

Excavated/Findspot Atri, tomb. (Europe, Italy, Abruzzi,Teramo (province),Atri) 500BC-475BC.

Etruscan gold fibula

A gold fibula (a clasp used with clothing) was made by the Etruscans in the 7th centuryBC. It is in the British Museum in London.
Photograph:A gold fibula (a clasp used with clothing) was made by the Etruscans in the 7th centuryBC. It is in the British Museum in London.

Courtesy of the trustees of the British Museum

Etruscan Gold necklaces from Camposcola Necropolis, Vulci.

Gold necklaces from Camposcola Necropolis, Vulci. The top has 9 animal motif pendants, the other 7 discs of mythological scenes (Hephaistos forging Achilles' helmet, Hippothéon suckled by a mare, Troillo slain by Achilles), mid-4th century BC, Museo Gregoriano Etrusco.

Photo by Jean-Pol Grandmont.

Etruscan Gold Praeneste Fibula

The Praeneste Fibula 

This brooch is inscribed with oldest known latin inscription, which reads: "Manios med fehfhaked numasioi" (Manius made me for Numerius).

7th century BC, Museo Preistorico Etnografico Luigi Pigorini, Rome. Photo by Pax Vobiscum.

Etruscan Gold Reel

Reel with representations of Pegasus and Chimaira, probably an ear-stud. Gold with filigree, granulation and stamping decoration, early 4th century BC, Louvre Museum, Paris. Photo by Jastrow.

Etruscan Gold Ring

Etruscan Gold Ring, late 4th or early 3rd century b.c.; Late Classical or Hellenistic

Estrucan Gold Achelous Head Pendentive

In Greek mythology, Achelous was the patron deity of the "silver-swirling" Achelous River, which is the largest river of Greece, and thus the chief of all river deities, every river having its own river spirit.  Homer's reference was interpreted as making Achelous "prince of rivers".

Achelous head. Pendentive of an Etruscan gold necklace, ca. 480 BC.

Etruscan Gold Pin With a Mistress of the Animals (potnia theron)

Etruscan. Louvre. Gold pin with a Mistress of the Animals (potnia theron). Gold with granulation, ca. 630 BC. Jatrow, 2008.

In ancient Greece she became the mixoparthenos, and in more recent times she was called the melusina or melusine in France.  See the Melusina Slide Show below:

Etruscan Chariot: Detail

 It was found in 1902 in Monteleone di Spoleto near Spoleto in the province of Perugia of Umbria, by a farmer named Isidoro Vannozzi who inadvertently unearthed it while digging a wine cellar. 

Because the museum's acquisition of the chariot in 1903 predates by six years Italy's first laws restricting export of items that carry "cultural and artistic values," the chariot's sale was legal at the time of purchase, though debated by the contemporary press. 

The principle subjects on the three parts of the chariot box refer to the life of a hero, most likely Achilles. In the center, Achilles receives armor from Thetis, his mother.

On one side, he engages in combat with another hero, possibly Memnon; on the other side, he appears in a chariot drawn by winged horses. While the style and subject of the reliefs look to Greek art and myth, the treatment of the scenes is thoroughly Etruscan.


Etruscan; From Monteleone, Italy Bronze H. 51 1/2 in. (130.8 cm) Rogers Fund, 1903