According to searchforpublicschools, the ethnographic structure that we have described is that of the various Italian regions, when the Roman arms arrived there, and substantially corresponds to that of the Italic confederation; but this arrangement was, in turn, the result of a whole complex of previous invasions, overlaps and ethnic displacements, which took place from the most ancient times to the days of Roman domination.
Of these displacements and these fluctuations those that we can grasp in historical age are the following: the descent of the Celtic lineages in northern Italy, which probably took place already in the century. It goes. C., we do not know if with a single invasion or, as seems more probable, in successive waves, and the advance of the Sabellic bloodlines in Campania, Lucania and Bruzio, in the second half of the century. V and in the beginning of the IV. In northern Italy the Celts had to fight with the Etruscans, and it is certain that, if not the seats, the domination of this people extended towards the second half of the period of the Roman monarchy, as well as in Etruria, Emilia and northern Italy , in Lazio and in part of Campania. On the other hand we know that the Sabellic bloodlines, descending in southern Italy, overlapped with pre-existing lineages, which are then those with which the Greeks came into contact in the early days of their colonization, namely, the Ausonî of Campania and the Enotrî of the rest of southern Italy, of which the Italians were part of the extreme tip of the boot and from which the Sicilians and the Sicans departed and flowed into Sicily. Ausonî, Siculi and Sicani and therefore, in general, the Enotrîs belonged with the greatest probability to the Latin group (suffice it to recall that the names of Volturnus , Nola , ager Falernus , as well as the Sicilian and Sicani ethnic groups ). So it is legitimate to conclude that before the century. It goes. C. Northern Italy was divided between Ligurians, Etruscans and Venetians, the central between Umbrians, Etruscans and Latino-Falisci, southern Italy and Sicily between the latter and the Greek colonies.
Other inferences are legitimate for the time prior to the Etruscan invasion, that is, that the Etruscans, both in northern and central Italy, overlapped Umbrian lineages. In fact, even here it is enough to remember that names such as Umbro for the Ombrone river, Camers for the city of Clusium Hatria , Spina are of Italic origin., and Umbrian origins were attributed by tradition to Cortona, Perugia, Ravenna, Rimini, etc .; it should be added that, according to Herodotus, the two tributaries of the Danube, Karpis and Alpis, had their sources in the earth ‘Ομβρικῶν, and the importance of the Umbrians in the most remote antiquity is confirmed by many clues. And then we can recapture in the ethnographic map of ancient Italy the moment in which central and northern Italy were for the most part occupied by Umbrian, ie Italic, lineages.
And we are all wondering: what were the lineages, which the Umbrians overlapped in their turn? and it can be answered with the greatest probability that in northern Italy they found the Ligurians, who certainly once had much more extensive headquarters than those of historical time: and then here is the succession that is emerging: Ligurian substratum, diffusion of the Italic lineages , arrival and expansion of the Etruscan lineages, Greek colonization, Celtic invasions, confinement of the Etruscans in Etruria, advance of the Osco-Umbrian lineages in central and southern Italy.
For the most ancient of these different phases, only a relative chronology is possible, since an absolute one, and always of an approximate character, is allowed only starting from the Greek colonization, which dates back to about the middle of the century. VIII a. C., and it continues in the following decades, while the Celtic invasions are, as we have already said, of the century. V and the advance of the Osco-Umbrian bloodlines reaches the beginning of the fourth. Regarding the arrival of the Italics, on the other hand, from their relevance to the Indo-European lineages it can be inferred that they descended from the North through the passes of the central or eastern Alps, and since it can be considered ascertained that the Indo-European lineages knew copper before arrive in European locations, it seems equally certain that they could not have reached Italy before the dawn of the metal age, that is of the Eneolithic period. And the same then must be true for the arrival of the Venetians and the Messapîs who we have seen also belong to the Indo-European stock; but will they have come before or after the Italics? It is a question that cannot be answered even by way of presumption on the basis of linguistic or traditional elements; and it is necessary to ask for any illumination of the materials of prehistoric archeology.