The Great Archaeologists takes the reader on a journey from the
first attempt to establish just how ancient the "ancient past"
really was, through the revelatory discovery of lost civilizations
and unknown cultures, right up to today s search for explanations
about the past.
We meet Thomsen and Worsaae, Danish researchers and rivals, and
Sanz de Sautuola and Abbe Breuil, who astonished the world with
their discoveries of cave art. Controversial figures such as
Heinrich Schliemann and the Hungarian Aurel Stein, plunderer of
ancient manuscripts from Central Asia, are given new assessments.
Little-known pioneers such as Max Uhle in Peru and Li Chi in China
are set beside the giants in the field from Koldewey, Dorpfeld, and
Woolley in the Near East, to Louis and Mary Leakey, who transformed
knowledge of our African ancestry. Other indomitable women include
Gertrude Bell, Kathleen Kenyon, and the script-decipherer Tatiana
Brian Fagan has assembled a team of some of the world s greatest
living archaeologists to write knowledgeably and entertainingly
about their distinguished predecessors in this handsome volume,
full of fascinating anecdotes, personal accounts, and unexpected
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