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HORTA or HORTANUM (Orte), an ancient town of Etruria, situated on the right bank of the Tiber, nearly opposite to its confluence with the Nar (Nera). Its name is mentioned only by Pliny, who calls it Hortanum (probably an adjective form), and by P. Diaconus, who writes it Horta, and mentions it with Sutrium, Polimartium, Ameria, and other towns on the two sides of the Tiber. (Plin. Nat. 3.5. s. 8; P. Diac. 4.8.) There can, therefore, be no doubt that it is the place still called Orte, where, besides some relics of Roman times, numerous Etruscan sepulchres have been discovered, and objects of considerable interest brought to light. (Dennis, Etruria, vol. i. pp. 162--167.) It probably derived its name from the Etruscan goddess Horta, who is mentioned by Plutarch. (Quaest. Rom. 46; Müller, Etrusker. vol. ii. p. 62.) The celebrated Lacus Vadimonis, the scene of two of the most decisive defeats of the Etruscans by the Romans, was situated about 4 miles above Horta, close to the banks of the Tiber. [VADIMONIS LACUS] The Via Amerina, which led from Falerii to Ameria [AMERIA], crossed the Tiber just below Horta, where the remains of a Roman bridge are still visible. (Dennis, l.c. p. 167.)

The “Hortinae classes” mentioned by Virgil (Aen. 7.715) must probably be connected with this city, though he places them on the left bank of the Tiber, among the Sabines, and the adjective formed from Horta would naturally be Hortanus, and not Hortinus.


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