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February 14, 2018


Artemis Papatheodorou, University of Oxford
Artemis was recently awarded her PhD in Oriental Studies from the University of Oxford. Her thesis, which was approved with no corrections, dealt with the history of Ottoman archaeology in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Through an in-depth analysis of a large number of primary sources in Ottoman Turkish, Greek, French and English, she aimed at critically exploring the policies of the Ottoman central state, those of the autonomous Principality of Samos in the Aegean, as well as the archaeology-related activities of the Hellenic Literary Society at Constantinople. An Ottomanist historian, Artemis is particularly interested in the history of archaeology in the Ottoman and post-Ottoman lands both at the state and societal levels. Also, she likes to combine public engagement with research for the promotion of heritage protection and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Welcome, Artemis, and many thanks for joining our community!


When the going gets tough

February 9, 2018

I don’t know what the tough do although I suspect they don’t break into song (as an aside, I loved that film and Romancing the Stone) I do know what I do – I hide from it all and read voraciously, books, newspapers, journal articles, and surf the internet looking for distraction and catching up on blogs. Right now the going is very, very tough, to the extent that I’m almost thinking nostalgically about the time before Christmas when my main worry was the smell and the endless making of felt trees. Almost. In my head HARN towers looks like this

As a consequence I have been reading, a lot. But because it’s been so stressful I’ve mainly been reading children’s books, or Young Adult books and whatever we call books like this which are too young for young adults and too old for young children. None of them are even remotely about archaeology or history although some like these  and these are set in archaeological/historical times but unless you would like some children’s or teenager’s book recommendations probably of no interest. Obviously I have many other books I could and should be reading but they are serious books, archaeology or history books, books without a rattling good plot, books that mean I have to think to understand them and that is not where I’m at right now. I have just begun to read This Orient Isle by Jerry Brotton which is for adults and is history and is also very good – he wrote the fascinating A History of the World in Twelve Maps so I’m expecting This Orient Isle to be just as good. I might even write a review if I can retain any of the information.

Aside from that I’ve been pottering around the internet, getting up to date on blogs even if I have to go back a few years to do so, if that makes sense. I have learned several interesting things I didn’t know 1) Stewart Copeland him of The Police fame (and obviously many other things, please don’t tell me about them), anyway, his mother was an archaeologist, Lorraine Adie Copeland. Ms Copeland specialised in Near Eastern Palaeolithic archaeology and worked with Dorothy Garrod and Diana Kirkbride amongst others. 2) There is a Penguin Collectors Society, promoting all things Penguin books related rather than collecting actual physical penguins. Now I’ve written that I’m feeling rather disappointed, for all my love of Penguin/Puffin/Pelican books a society that physically collected penguins would be superb

Falkland_Islands_Penguins_91 (1)

By Ben Tubby ( [CC BY 2.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons

I would have to collect Southern Rockhopper Penguins, although I’m also very taken with Chinstrap and King Penguins. However, probably best if I don’t try keeping a colony of penguins in the house a la Mr Popper’s Penguins. So, disappointment aside The Penguin Collectors Society is well worth a visit and Penguin books and archaeology are well worthy of a blog post themselves – I did talk about them in archaeology and crime, way, way back, but the number Pelicans that deal with archaeology and history of archaeology are substantial. Thing 3) that I learnt was ‘For a few months in early 1962, a team from the Archaeological Survey of India excavated the site of Afyeh in Egyptian Nubia as part of the International Campaign to Save the Monuments of Nubia—the same campaign responsible for the much better-known salvage of the temples of Ramses II and Nefertari at Abu Simbel’ and William Carruthers went off to India in 2016 to investigate this. His blog posts here make fascinating reading so if, like me, you are completely behind the times go there and read. I particularly liked the entry on Lush, it made me nostalgic and also reminded me that my own son is about to hit the nerdish teenage years (I do hope W C doesn’t mind me calling him nerdish, it is meant affectionately) and I am optimistic I’ll find his obsessions endearing rather than infuriating!

I will continue to post HARN related matters and hopefully some more varied blog posts but I make no promises. If any of you would like to contribute a piece for the blog then please do, now would be an ideal time!

Meanwhile have a great weekend


CfP and EAA Session Alert

February 2, 2018

HARN members Laura, Vlada and Anna are organising a session at the EAA’s meeting this year in Barcelona. If you want to submit a paper or poster proposal, remember you must do it by the 15th of February:





  1. Laura Coltofean– Brukenthal National Museum (Sibiu, Romania)
  2. Vladimir V.Mihajlović– Institute for Balkan Studies SASA (Belgrade, Serbia)

PhD Candidate Anna Gustavsson – University of Gothenburg (Sweden)


The objects exhibited in archaeological and history museums today are often part of impressive and meticulously created collections whose origins can be traced back to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, sometimes even before. In many cases, archival sources, old scientific publications and newspapers offer the opportunity to reconstruct the complex and fascinating histories of these collections, as well as the early curatorial practices related to them. What are the stories behind archaeological collections? How and in what cultural, political and social context were they formed? How did they evolve in time?

This session aims to explore the histories and lives of various archaeological collections in Europe and beyond. We welcome papers that explore themes such as the birth of archaeological collections and the reasons and ideologies behind them; the trajectories of the objects that constitute these collections, from discovery to their inclusion in collections (whether private or public); and the criteria employed in organising, storing, preserving and displaying collections in the past and now. We would like to encourage discussion on the exhibitions in which archaeological objects were presented, their display and the concepts behind it. Discussions might include correspondence concerning archaeological collections and the networks of scholars, amateurs and common people that formed around them; the role of collections in knowledge production, transfer and exchange; and the scientific interest raised by a specific collection in time (who researched it, why and how).


Paper and poster proposals have to be submitted by 15 February 2018, through the online submission form of the 24th Annual Meeting of the EAA:

Accepted and rejected abstracts will be announced on 25 March 2018.

Please note that all the delegates who will participate in the Annual Meeting must be current EAA members (paid-up for 2018). Information about registration, membership fees, deadlines, provisional programme and other details can be found on the webpage of the event:

Guidelines for speakers and poster presentations:


Laura ColtofeanVladimir V. Mihajlović,  Anna Gustavsson:



January 31, 2018


Laura Coltofean, Brukenthal National Museum

Laura Coltofean is a museum curator and an archaeologist at the Brukenthal National Museum in Sibiu, the first public museum in present-day Romania, opened in 1817. Her research focuses on prehistoric archaeology, history of archaeology, the politics of identity in archaeology (gender, nationalism and ethnicity) and heritage.

She earned her PhD in History in December 2016, at the “Lucian Blaga” University of Sibiu, Romania. Her thesis reconstructs the scientific biography of archaeologist Zsófia Torma (1832-1899) in the cultural, social and political context of 19th-century Transylvania (then part of Austria-Hungary and today of Romania). Zsófia Torma was a pioneering Hungarian archaeologist who had a significant contribution to the development of prehistoric archaeology in Transylvania. The information available at this moment indicates that she was the first female archaeologist in Austria-Hungary. Laura Coltofean’s thesis is the first comprehensive work on Zsófia Torma’s activity and the first in Romania on the historiography of women’s participation in archaeology.


Welcome, Laura, and many thanks for joining our community!

EAA 2018 Deadline Reminder!

January 25, 2018

The deadline for submitting abstracts for this year’s meeting of the EAA Reflecting Futures is the 15th of February at 23.59 CET.

24th Annual Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists – Reflecting Futures

Barcelona, 5-8 September

CALL FOR PAPERS – 2 Sessions (#302 and #598)

The deadline for submitting or modifying an abstract is 15 February 2018, 23h59 CET.

There are several interesting sessions for historians of archaeology and HARN’s own Ana Cristina Martins is involved in organising two sessions so get those abstracts done pronto!



Gendered, diverse, inclusive archaeological museums? Proposals and experiences for a more equal approach to heritage

During the last decades more and more archaeological museums started to include a gender perspective and developed new exhibitions and educational projects. By establishing a critical attitude towards the traditional androcentric discourses and gender roles, museums started to make not only women, but also other marginalized groups in society more visible. Modern archaeological exhibitions seem to be more diverse and inclusive.

Therefore, it is time to present and discuss the different experiences carried out in recent years in European archaeological museums with more gendered, diverse and inclusive approaches, in order to develop a framework of reflection in a “museology of gender and diversity”, conceived as a more integrative, social and egalitarian approach to the heritage presented there.

Paper and poster proposals may include topics like

– theoretical advances in the studies of gender archaeology and its reflection in museums

– museums as an educational tool to achieve gender equality

– experiences in community museums and temporary exhibitions

– public studies as a diagnostic tool to advance in education of equality

– aspects of communication, journalism and merchandising

– experiences of museum educational service and informative departments

With the organization of this session, we intend to highlight the idea that archaeological museums can transmit an inclusive history that helps to make visible the traditionally marginalized groups of society, in order to contribute to a more egalitarian education and to provide a more equal approach to heritage.


Museums, archaeology, gender, diversity, Heritage

Main organiser:

Prof. Lourdes PRADOS TORREIRA (Spain)


Prof. Doris Gutsmiedl-Schümann (Germany)
Dr. Ana Cristina Martins (Portugal)



Archaeology and interdisciplinarity & interdisciplinarity in archaeology: stories of a long and diversified journey (19th-21st centuries)

Rooted in scientific areas as diverse as architecture and geology, archaeology was affirmed in the 19th century through collaboration with other disciplines such as philology and anthropology. On the other hand, archaeology played a fundamental role in the establishment of the fields of conservation and restoration. Meanwhile, it was contemplated in heritage policy and legislation, contributed to the production of knowledge divulged in different supports and ways, as well as to the development of the tourism.

Bringing together interests, purposes and procedures defined by different actors, individual and collective, public and private, local, regional, national and transnational, archaeology has been evolving theoretically and methodologically due to new ways of looking at the past. New ways that have been and are being generated by (and together to) other human and social sciences, as well as enhanced and / or urged by exact and natural sciences.

This session invites papers and posters dealing with topics such as:

– archaeology and other sciences;

– interdisciplinarity, reanalysis and reuses of the past;

– archaeology, heritage preservation and museums;

– teaching archaeology;

– archaeology, journalism, mass communication, digital platforms and new social nets;

– archaeology, cultural tourism and sustainable development.

Following the previous seminar organized within the research project ‘InterArq-Archaeology and Interdisciplinarity’ (Barcelona, 2017) this session aims to obtain a broader (geographical, chronological and thematic) picture of this issue.


Archaeology, Interdisciplinarity; Reanalysis; Reuses.

Main organiser:

Dr. Ana Cristina MARTINS (Portugal)


Prof. Isabel Ordieres Díez (Spain)


Nancy Sandars

January 25, 2018

We’ve had an enquiry for information about Nancy Sandars. When I read Megan’Price’s email I thought ‘hmm, familiar name, who was she?’ A quick search reminded me Nancy Sandars died in 2015 (at the grand age of 101) in her long and varied life she’d worked with Kenyon and Childe before becoming famous for her work on Mediterranean archaeology. There are several obituaries for her (I’ve linked to three, there are more – see my previous post, and the comments, about who gets obituaried and who doesn’t) and her own web pages.

Megan doesn’t say what sort of information she’s looking for about Ms Sandars, but if you know any resources or can suggest lines of enquiry then put a note in the comments or email us here and I will pass on your information.

Thank you


New Publication

January 22, 2018

HARN member, Pawel Gołyźniak, has been in touch about his latest publication:

I am happy to announce that my book on ancient engraved gems from the collection of the National Museum in Krakow has just been published by Reichert Verlag! 
The volume is available to order here
Gołyźniak P. Ancient Engraved Gems in the National Museum in Krakow. Wiesbaden: Reichert Verlag 2017.

This book is a catalogue raisonée of a rich collection of ancient engraved gems housed in the National Museum in Krakow. It offers a thorough insight into ancient glyptic art through the considerable range of almost 780 so far unpublished objects – cameos, intaglios, scarabs and finger rings of various styles, workmanship and cultural circles: Egyptian, Near Eastern, Minoan, Greek, Etruscan, Italic, Roman, Sassanian and early Christian, dated from the second millennium BC to the seventh century AD.

Many pieces in this cabinet are notable not only for their top quality in terms of craftsmanship and design, but also for the materials used and engravings involving complex iconography illustrating religious beliefs, political allegiances, needs and desires that ancient people wished to be fulfill, fears, dangers and terrors from which they sought protection and even their daily occupations. The collection provides with a fascinating gallery of portrait studies presenting Hellenistic rulers and their queens, Roman emperors and members of their families as well as some private individuals. Some specimens are exceptional and unparalleled like the onyx cameo portraying Drusus Maior, likely executed by the hand of Eutyches, son of famous Dioscurides (cover) or a tiny but remarkably cut emerald cameo with a laureate portrait bust of Livia Drusilla as goddess Venus. Some objects have been preserved in their original settings (gold, silver, bronze, iron rings), which contributes to the study of ancient gems’ chronology and indicate their users, while others have been later re-set into eighteenth- and nineteenth-century collectors’ rings and sometimes more elaborated mounts. There are also pieces discoloured due to contact with considerable heat, which may suggest them to have been burnt with other personal objects on the funeral pyres and later deposited in burials. Noteworthy is the number of Greek and Latin inscriptions appearing on intaglios and cameos forming this cabinet. They span from owners’ names to the subtle messages communicated between lovers and invocations to the God. 

Each gem is thoroughly analysed, described and exhaustively commented as to the device it bears, chronology and possible workshop attribution. A vast number of parallel objects is referenced too. This combined with provenance study presented in the first part of the book enabled to establish where a number of intaglios and cameos were manufactured, including almost 140 objects most likely to origin from the most important Roman workshop located in Aquileia. It ought to be singled out that many gems in this volume once constituted a part of distinguished collections formed by such personalities as Tobias von Biehler, Alessandro Gregorio Capponi, Auguste le Carpentier, Alessandro Castellani, Comte de Caylus, Count Nikolai Nikitich Demidoff, Baron Albert de Hirsch, Jean François Leturcq, Sibylle Mertens-Schaaffhausen, Dr. George Frederick Nott, Benedetto Pistrucci, James-Alexandre de Pourtalès (Comte de Pourtalès-Gorgier), Paul von Praun, Andrey Kirillovich Razumovsky, Jacques Meffre Rouzan, Philipp von Stosch, Antonio Maria Zanetti and many more. They seemed lost for more than 130 years, but now have been brought back and are accessible to everyone. Consequently, the volume presents three intriguing stories of collectors whose donations contributed to the Krakow assemblage. They not only provide the reader with a sort of background for the objects discussed further, but also illustrate nineteenth- and early twentieth-century collecting practices and the art market for engraved gemstones, contributing to our knowledge of the history of scholarship and collecting. In summary, this book is intended to be useful not only for scholars interested in gems, but also those who study the history of the art market and collecting as well as all the enthusiasts of Classical art and archaeology.