Archaeologists dig to reveal the past. They meticulously preserve information that pieces together human history, but they also make choices about which histories they focus on in the sites they excavate. In contrast, looters dig for treasure and destroy context. But what about the collections that pre-date modern archaeology—the objects that have no recorded findspot—where the only real evidence we have comes from the object itself?
videos + essays
The discovery of the Antikythera shipwreck was the first of a series of ancient shipwrecks to be identified in the Eastern Mediterranean over the course of the 20th century.
A Late Classical Greek bronze remained on the seabed for 23 centuries
As people from all over the world visit Pompeii, officials juggle increasing threats to the deteriorating site.
Should archaeological sites be restored to how we believe they once looked, or conserved and left as is?
The story of the past is hidden under layers of human residue, accumulated over thousands of years.
What do we gain when works come from a well-documented excavation?
Is this delicate female portrait what we think? Take part in a discussion of a masterpiece we know little about.