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Prosilio digging actionThe Faculty of Classics in Cambridge is one of the world’s leading centres for the study of the art & archaeology of ancient Greece. Our graduates are preferentially sought for appointments in universities throughout Britain and America, while their publications have generated a worldwide response. Our alumni specialising in Greek art & archaeology include, among many others, John Bennet (British School at Athens), Cyprian Broodbank (Cambridge), Jonathan Hall (Chicago), Catherine Morgan (Oxford), Ian Morris (Stanford), Lisa Nevett (Ann Arbor), Gillian Shepherd (La Trobe), and James Whitley (Cardiff).

Several distinguished archaeologists and art historians taught in the Faculty of Classics: from Charles Walston, excavator of the Argive Heraeum, and Alan Wace, excavator of Mycenae and pioneer in the archaeological investigation of ancient Thessaly and Macedonia, to Robert Cook and his groundbreaking work on Greek Painted Pottery, and Antony Snodgrass who created one of the most influential schools of Mediterranean Archaeology. Between 1978 and 1991, Anthony Snodgrass (with John Bintliff) directed a regional archaeological study of large areas of ancient Boeotia in central Greece – a region still at the heart of research for the Faculty of Classics, with the ongoing excavations of the Mycenaean cemetery at Prosilio near Orchomenos (a project co-directed by Dr Yannis Galanakis and the Ephorate of Antiquities of Boeotia).

The Faculty is home to the Museum of Classical Archaeology which comprises more than 600 plaster casts of Greek and Roman sculpture, around 4,500 paper squeezes of ancient inscriptions, and some 10,000 objects, mostly sherds from excavations of sites in the eastern Mediterranean, such as Knossos, Mycenae, the Athenian Agora and Naukratis. The Faculty also houses important archival collections, including the A.J.B. Wace Mycenae Archive, a photographic library and a substantial collection of slides (now largely digitised).

Our current team includes Prof. Robin Osborne (archaic and classical art & archaeology), Dr Yannis Galanakis (Bronze and Iron Age Aegean) and Dr Nigel Spivey (Greek sculpture and pottery, Etruscan art & archaeology). Prof. Cyprian Broodbank (archaeology and long-term history of the Mediterranean, Bronze Age Greece) is the Director of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research and also a member of the Classical archaeology group.

Latest news

John Donaldson

27 September 2022

The Museum of Classical Archaeology is very sad to report the death on 21 September 2022 of its former Assistant Curator, John Donaldson. John worked in the Museum from 1988 until his retirement in in March 2013. Indeed, the Museum looks the way it does in large part because of John, who was as happy painting bases as he...

Joyce Reynolds FBA (1918–2022)

12 September 2022

The Faculty of Classics is deeply saddened by the news of the death of Joyce Reynolds FBA. She was Reader Emerita in Roman Historical Epigraphy, Fellow of the British Academy, and Honorary Fellow of Newnham College, where she was Director of Studies in Classics from 1951 to 1979. She was awarded the Gold Medal of the...

BBC Radio 4 - Reflections on Majesty, Mary Beard

12 September 2022

Mary Beard is one of ten writers and scholars invited by the BBC to reflect on their experience of the reign of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Follow the link below to listen: Listen here

Visual Interactions in Early Writing Systems (VIEWS) awarded ERC grant

16 March 2022

Philippa Steele, Senior Research Associate at the Faculty of Classics, University of Cambridge, has been awarded a grant of 2 million euros by the European Research Council (ERC) to investigate the visual properties of pre-modern writing. The five-year project, Visual Interactions in Early Writing Systems (VIEWS), will...