The Archive of Attica at the Institute of Archaeological Studies at the RUB

An establishment of the Archive of Attica was initiated by the work of Prof. Dr. Hans Karl Lauter (1940–2007) at the former Institute of Classical Archaeology at the RUB. Since 1981, the archive has developed into a documentation centre for research in Attica conducted by H. Lauter, H. Lauter-Bufe and H. Lohmann. Unfortunately, the extension of the collection with archival materials from the research in Attica conducted by Prof. Dr. Franz-Georg Maier (Zurich) could not be carried out due to a lack of space in the former seat of the Institute, in building GA.

Attica is situated on a peninsula at the easternmost tip of Central Greece. The Attic peninsula projects in the form of a triangle southeast, between the Euboean Sea and the Saronic Gulf. The peninsula covers 2530 sq. km and it encompassed the second largest polis of Classical Greece after Sparta; Athens. Athens was a territorial state with about 300 000 inhabitants during the Classical period.

The research in Attica, initiated by H. Lauter and further undertaken by H. Lohmann with a number of participating students, largely contributed to the establishment of methods for landscape archaeology within classical archaeology, diverging from methodologies used in art history at the time.

The Archive of Attica includes:

  • Maps
  • Drawings (more than 200 pcs.)
  • Field documentation
  • Photographic documentation (ca. 4 000 pcs.)
  • Diapositives (more than 20 000 pcs.)

The Archive of Maps includes a complete set of original Prussian maps of Attica from 1889 in the scale 1 : 25 000, a set of modern topographical map of the Nomos (administrative district) of Attica and neighbouring regions in the scale 1 : 50 000 published by the Military Geographical Institute in Athens, and a number of other maps both old and new of Attica and Greece.

The collection of drawings encompasses more than 200 original plans from surveys and excavations, conducted by H. Lauter or H. Lohmann in Attica between 1981 and 1999.

H. Lauter passed away in 2007 and his wife H. Lauter-Bufe handed over the Archive of Attica, the scientific inheritance of her husband, which included the entire documentation of the excavations in Tourkovouni near Athens, Lathoureza at Vari and, especially, Kiapha Thiti at Vari. Kapia Thiti represents the first excavations of a fortified early-Mycenaean Prince's headquarters in Attica and the results indicate the formation of a new elite during the transition from the late Middle Helladic to the early Late Helladic period. Furthermore, the archive includes the field documentation from the archaeological survey of H. Lohmann as well as from the excavations conducted in Demos Atene in southern Attica in the years 1995 and 1996. In addition, the archive includes drawings, field documentation and photographic documentation from two more projects conducted by H. Lohmann. The first project ´Attic Forts´ was supported by the DAI and took place from 1991 to 1999. The second one, ´Prehistoric and Classic lead-silver mining in Ari (Attica)´, has been running since 2011 with the financial support of the DFG.

The photographic documentation from the above-mentioned excavations and surveys represents some 4 000 large-format black-and-white photographs together with negatives as well as several thousand diapositives. Unfortunately, only a small part of the photographic documentation has been digitized thus far.