Beyond extispicy

Fufluns demonstrates ancient art of Etruscan divination


Step 1. Drink lots of wine.
Step 2. Strip down to your boots and crown.
Step 3. Drink more wine.
Step 4. Get some chick to hold up a mirror or bowl filled with wine (assuming there’s any wine left) until you start seeing visions.

Fufluns Pachie is totally my favorite version of Dionysos’ name, though the Oscan Loufir comes a close second:

“Charming language,” he said, “charming! Ever since I learned that the Etruscans used to call the god of wine Fufluns, I’ve taken the keenest interest in their language. Fufluns – how incomparably more appropriate that is than Bacchus, or Liber, or Dionysos! Fufluns, Fufluns,” he repeated with delighted emphasis. “It couldn’t be better. They had a real linguistic genius, those creatures. What poets they must have produced! ‘When Fufluns flucuthukhs the ziz’ – one can imagine the odes in praise of wine which began like that. You couldn’t bring together eight such juicy, boozy syllables as that in English, could you?” (Aldous Huxley, Those Barren Leaves pg. 248)

All kidding aside, this image is really cool as you actually see Dionysos engaged in the act of divination. If you’d like to learn more about Dionysos’ cult in Etruria you should probably start with Larissa Bonfante’s superb study.

And here is a system of Etruscan Runes that Serena Powers came up with. You can even get a free online reading using a variety of different casts

2 thoughts on “Beyond extispicy

  1. That type of divination is very old(back to the bronze age at least), and widespread(even found in China).


  2. Despite it sounding semi-similar to a job that no longer exists that Viagra/etc. made redundant in the porn industry, I also have always liked that moniker for Dionysos/etc. (if, in fact, it is the same Deity…even between Roman and Greek Deities, in my experience They’re not always the same, and likewise between Roman and Etruscan and Greek and Etruscan in some cases…my own jury is still out on Fufluns, though…!?!)


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