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Celebrating Five Years of the A. G. Leventis Chair in Archaeological Sciences at The Cyprus Institute


 Photo: From left to right: Prof. Patrick Degryse, Dr Michael Boyd, Dr Evi Margaritis, Dr Tasso Leventis, Prof. Thilo Rehren, Dr Efthymia Nikita and Prof. Cyprian Broodbank

On Thursday, September 21 and Friday, September 22, 2023, The Cyprus Institute celebrates the completion of five successful years of the A. G. Leventis Chair in Archaeological Sciences, held by CyI Professor Thilo Rehren. Established in 2018, as a result of generous support from the A. G. Leventis Foundation, research supported by this Chair has played a pivotal role in advancing archaeological research in the Eastern Mediterranean.

The event featured official addresses by dignitaries followed by lectures from researchers supported by the A. G. Leventis Foundation, offering profound insights into the Chair’s diverse results impact. The event was addressed by the Deputy Minister of Culture, Prof. Vasiliki Kassianidou, in the presence of Dr Tasso Leventis and Mr. George David.

In his welcoming address, CyI President Prof. Stavros Malas noted that the A. G. Leventis Foundation is at the forefront of supporting a successful ecosystem in Archaeological Sciences. “The Leventis family is a great example of philanthropy and philopatry in Cyprus. A small and young country requires collaboration among various stakeholders to collectively maximize output”, he added.

Dr Tasso Leventis highlighted that the A. G. Leventis Chair in Archaeological Sciences at The Cyprus Institute nicely aligns with the Leventis Foundation’s commitment to archaeological research, environmental protection, and providing humanitarian assistance to the local community.

“Creative talent from different origins and perspectives can contribute to novel approaches and solutions. I am pleased to confirm that The Cyprus Institute could not have advanced to its current level of achievements without such important and well-applied collaborations as those we have created”, he concluded.

The Deputy Minister of Culture stated that the A. G. Leventis Foundation has nurtured a generation of archaeologists who have been able to pursue their dreams in this field of study.

“The establishment of the A. G. Leventis Chair at The Cyprus Institute, along with the appointment of my dear friend, Prof. Thilo Rehren, has propelled STARC, and by extension, The Cyprus Institute, to the forefront of Archaeological Material Studies, making solid and valuable contributions to the field and opening up amazing potential for the study of Cypriot and Mediterranean cultures”, she noted.

In his address, Prof. Thilo Rehren emphasized that “the way to reach a healthy and diverse ecosystem with tangible results is through academic excellence and a set of core values that my colleagues and I share. With that in mind, I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to everybody who has given us their support over these five years until today”.

In addition to the Deputy Minister of Culture, the Ambassador of the United States, Mrs. Julie D. Fisher, former Minister Dr. Yiannis Toumazis and former EU Commissioner Mrs. Androulla Vassiliou, the Director of the Department of Antiquities of Cyprus, Dr. Marina Solomidou-Ieronymidou, members of the Board of Trustees and Friends of the Institute Association, as well as experts, scholars, students, and the general public attended the event.

As part of the celebrations, on Wednesday, September 20, 2023, Professor Cyprian Broodbank of the University of Cambridge, delivered an enthralling lecture entitled “Remaking the Middle Sea with Archaeological Science: Eight Questions that Mediterranean Archaeologists Should be Interested in” that transported the attendees through time and science, celebrating the Mediterranean's rich history and the remarkable advances in archaeological science that have continuously reshaped our understanding of this ancient region.

In his talk, Professor Broodbank emphasized that the Mediterranean has played a longstanding role as a crucible for exciting breakthroughs in archaeological science. These advancements have already significantly enhanced our comprehension of its long-term history and dynamics. These milestones span from the groundbreaking radiocarbon revolution, environmental archaeology, and initial strides in provenance studies during the 1950s to the 1970s, all the way to the recent biomolecular innovations and those on the horizon.

The two-day event concluded on Friday, September 22, 2023, with a diverse array of academic lectures on archaeology and archaeological science in the Eastern Mediterranean, showcasing the depth and breadth of ongoing research in this field, under the title of “A Kaleidoscope of Archaeological Sciences”.




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