Gray ware is characterized by a more or less purified clay and a gray color with a wide range of shades. Its presence is documented in many centers of the Po Valley and northern Etruria as well as in most of the north-Italian territory up to Celtic Europe, at least from the end of the 6th to the 3rd-2nd century BC, with a morphological repertoire destined mainly for the table. Diffusion and duration contribute to revealing the complexity of this productive phenomenon, which has been subjected to an increasing interest in recent years. Although it has not exhausted all the problems connected to it, this interest has allowed us to focus on some of its essential traits: original economic and cultural aspects, technological aspects, but, above all, a variety of models. Over time, this production was greatly inspired by other traditions, undoubtedly its most peculiar feature. Therefore, the present contribution aims to explore the Conference’s topic from the angle offered by this particular production, which is well present, as anticipated, in both sides of the Tuscan-Emilian Apennines. In this perspective, particular attention will be paid to the documentation coming from the Etruscan city of Marzabotto, which has increased significantly over the last few years thanks to the investigations conducted by the chair of Etruscology of the University of Bologna. We will analyze the findings from this center by comparing them within a broader panorama that includes, on the one hand, the Etruscan Po Valley and, on the other, northern Etruria. This approach will highlight similarities and/or differences between the districts and therefore offer possible ideas for the historical characterization of the Apennine area.

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