The Etruscans raise all the children that are born, without knowing who their fathers are
The children live the way their parents live, often attending drinking parties and having sexual relations with all the women. It is no disgrace for them to do anything in the open, or to be seen having it done to them, for they consider it a native custom. So far from thinking it disgraceful, they say when someone ask to see the master of the house, and he is making love, that he is doing so-and-so, calling the ine.
When they are having sexual relations either with courtesans or within their family, they do as follows: after they have stopped drinking and are about to go to bed, while the lamps are still lit, servants bring in courtesans, or boys, or sometimes even their wives. And when they have enjoyed these they bring in boys, and make love to them. They sometimes make love and have intercourse while people are watching them, but most of the time they put screens woven of sticks around the beds, and throw cloths on top of them.
They are keen on making love to women, but they particularly enjoy boys and youths. The youths in Etruria are very good-looking, because they live in luxury and keep their bodies smooth. In fact all the barbarians in the West use pitch to pull out and shave off the hair on their bodies.” (end)
We also find that many of the laws in ancient Italy, were very different from our own as well. For example, Gortyn was a municipality on the island of Crete. It amalgamated into Rome in the 1st Century BC, but before then, it had a Code of Law of its own. Here are excerpts from the Gortyn Law Code circa 450 BC (inscr. Creticae 4.72, cols. ii.3-27, ii. 45-iv.54, v. 1-9. vi.31-46, vi.56-vii.2, vii.15-viii.19, xi. 18-9.
If a slave is taken in adultery with a slave, 5 staters
“The various laws recorded on this long and beautifully incised inscription differ in many respects from Athenian practice (cf. nos. 80 and 81). In Gortyn women appear to have somewhat more independence: instead of a dowry, daughters have a specific portion of the inheritance equal to half of that of a son; under certain (perhaps only remotely possible circumstances) even an heiress might be able to choose her husband; a women can keep her own property (rather than having her dowry returned to her father or kyrios) and half of the cloth she has woven during the course of the marriage.
(ii.3-27) If a person rapes a free person, male or female, he shall pay 100 staters, and if [the victim] is from the house of an apetairos, 10 staters; and if a slave rapes a free person, male or female, he shall pay double. If a free man online title loans Ohio rapes a serf, male or female, he shall pay 5 drachmas. If a male serf rapes a serf, male or female, he shall pay five staters.
If a person deflowers a female household serf, he shall pay 2 staters. If she has already been deflowered, 1 obol if in day-time, 2 obols if at night. The female slave’s oath takes precedence.
If anyone makes an attempt to rape a free woman under the guardianship of a relative, he shall pay 10 staters, if a witness testifies.
If someone is taken in adultery with a free woman in her father’s house, or her brother’s or her husband’s, he is to pay 10 staters; if in another man’s house, 50 staters; if with the wife of an apetairos, 10 staters. But if a slave is taken in adultery with a free woman, he must pay double.