The Etruscan pyramid of Bomarzo was rediscovered by a local resident named Salvatore Fosci in 2008. This significant finding occurred in close proximity to the renowned Parco dei Mostri (Park of Monsters) located in Bomarzo.
The substantial peperino rock had remained concealed beneath overgrowth on the inclines of a deep canyon. Its revelation took place in the 1990s, facilitated by the efforts of two local archaeologists.
Attributed to the 7th or 6th centuries BCE, the pyramid is identified as an altar utilized by Etruscan haruspices. These diviners practiced the art of prophecy by examining the entrails of animals offered in sacrifice. This form of divination constituted a pivotal aspect of the Etrusca Disciplina, the religious scriptures of the Etruscan civilization, which notably influenced the cultural development of ancient Rome.
Positioned towards the northwest, the altar’s orientation aligns with the direction of the Etruscan underworld deities, known as “Di inferi.” During the zenith of the Etruscan civilization, this structure is presumed to have held profound sacred significance, although its precise details remain shrouded in obscurity.
The altar features intricately carved steps and channels, possibly designed to facilitate the drainage of sacrificial animal blood. It is also recognized by the name “Sasso del Predicatore” or “The Preacher’s Stone.” The steps exhibit a steep incline, and recesses carved along the sides and intermediate levels are believed to have supported wooden posts and other structural components in the past.