An ancient Etruscan tomb, with sarcophagi and an array of grave goods, has been discovered by a farm worker in Italy. The Italian news website Umbria 24 reported the ground collapsed while the worker was ploughing the field, uncovering the burial site.

“It was a totally unexpected discovery. The area is away from the sites visited by tomb robbers and indeed the burial is undisturbed,” Dr Clarita Natalini from the archaeological superintendency of Umbria told Discovery news.

The tomb found in the Umbria region of Italy reportedly revealed a 1,4 square metre rectangular chamber with two sarcophagi, four marble urns and various grave goods. One of the sarcophagi containing the skeleton of a man, bearing an inscription of which only one word has been translated: “Laris” or Lars, a common first name of Etruscan males.

The Etruscan civilisation flourished in central Italy after 900 BC, and was known for art, agriculture, commerce and metalwork. Between 300 and 100 BC the Etruscans were largely absorbed into the Roman Empire, and little was left to study them.

However recent discoveries have shed more light on this civilisation, and it has been discovered they were largely responsible for teaching the French about wine making, and the Romans about building roads.

Click here for images of the tomb.

Source: Umbria 24 via: Discovery News

Image credit: Archaeological superintendency of Umbria