The Etruscans were extremely religious people, the Romans saying that Etruscans were the foremost peoples in divining the will of the Gods. Etruscan Priests figure in Roman culture right through the Republic and up to the period of the Empire, with several Emperors keeping Etruscan Priests in their retinues.
During the Republic, when Rome fought the Etruscans in 357 BC, Livy tells us that the Etruscan Army advanced with Priests to the fore, waving snakes and torches. The Legions initially faltered, being fearful of the Priest’s power, until their Consul mocked them for being scared. They rallied and ‘knocked aside the enemy’s useless devices’.
While I doubt Legionaries would have been afraid of a man with just a snake, I have assumed that the priests would have dressed like their Gods, to instil greater fear. This Snake Priest is dressed as Tuchulcha, a Demon of the Underworld as shown in numerous funerary paintings from the 5th-3rd Centuries. His wings can be added or left off, as appropriate – the wings giving him a more ‘Fantasy’ aspect – guaranteed to make those enemies tremble!
1 x 28mm figure, with separate wings. Supplied unassembled and unpainted.