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date: 08 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter highlights the experiences and results of a decade-long investigation of an Etruscan water tunnel (cuniculum) on a central Italian farm and the adaptation of this engineering method to a contemporary water distribution system. The history of these drainage and water distribution tunnels is discussed and the attributes that have made it possible for Etruscan water systems to survive over two millennia are identified. The chapter then proposes ways that this technology can be applied to the challenges posed by sustainable agriculture today. The discussion concludes by comparing a zero emission water distribution system that is currently employed on the author’s farm to its Etruscan ancestor, and suggests how archaeological knowledge can be applied in contemporary agricultural contexts

Keywords: cuniculum, Etruria, sustainable agriculture, water system, archaeology

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