Magazine article Times Higher Education

Obituary - Crawford Greenewalt, 1937-2012

Magazine article Times Higher Education

Obituary - Crawford Greenewalt, 1937-2012

Article excerpt

An archaeologist who played a central role in excavating King Croesus' city of Sardis has died.

Crawford Hallock Greenewalt, Jr - commonly known as "Greenie" - was born on 3 June 1937 in the US city of Wilmington, Delaware, and educated at a local school before attending Harvard College.

In 1959, the year he graduated, he was able to pursue his passion for ancient civilisations by joining the Sardis Expedition in Turkey as official photographer.

A report in Harvard Magazine later described the heroic early days when Professor Greenewalt and colleagues tried to find what lay beneath the Byzantine ruins by crawling "fearlessly through the heat and collapsing passages ... (until they) had excavated as far as 144 meters of down- spiraling tunnel into the acropolis".

Professor Greenewalt returned to the excavations every summer and was eventually appointed field director of the Archaeological Exploration of Sardis, a post he held from 1976 to 2007. He oversaw a large team of anthropologists, architects, art historians, conservators and illustrators as well as archaeologists, while also providing essential training for successive generations of students.

Buildings that have now been unearthed and restored at the site include a bath-gymnasium complex, Byzantine shops, a temple of Artemis, parts of what is probably the largest ancient synagogue outside Palestine and a cemetery with more than 200 tombs from the 7th and 6th centuries BC. …

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