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Forthcoming events

JOINT LECTURE WITH CBRL: Olga Tufnell: Life of a Petrie Pup

John MacDermot, PEF




4pm, 12th January 2017, BP Lecture Theatre, Clore Education Centre, British Museum. To book, contact the British Museum Box Office:  020 7323 8181 or     and go to the 'What's On' option at the top of the BM homepage. Then choose the 'Events Calendar'  and scroll down the page to see events listed by date and time.

Lecture Poster 12th January 2017.pdf

Olga Tufnell, 1930s

Olga Tufnell, 1930s. Photo PEF Archives

Olga Tufnell (1905-1985) was a distinguished British archaeologist whose work was focussed on the Middle East. She was born into a wealthy and privileged family and the lecture will outline her early life and education. As a young woman, she was appointed as an assistant to Sir William Flinders Petrie at University College London, where she worked on the preparation of exhibitions and similar tasks. Her contributions were apparently valued by Petrie and he invited her to join his last excavation in Egypt and later the excavations at Tell el-Fara and Tell el-Ajjul in Palestine. Having gained considerably in experience and knowledge, she then joined James Starkey at the excavation of Tell ed-Duweir (Biblical Lachish). Following the death of Starkey in 1938, the task of writing the extensive excavation report fell largely on Tufnell. In later life, she developed further her interest in costume, jewellery and amulets, and she spent the last 25 years of her life in a collaborative study with William (Bill) Ward on the Bronze Age scarab seals of Palestine. The lecturer will attempt to convey Olga Tufnell's scholarship, commitment to her subject and her many personal qualities.

John MacDermot is a retired Professor of Medicine and Therapeutics and former Head of Undergraduate Medicine at Imperial College London. During his professional life, he served as Academic Registrar and later International Director of the Royal College of Physicians. He also served on many government committees and grant committees for the Medical Research Council, British Heart Foundation and other funding agencies.
Since retirement, he was worked as a volunteer at the British Museum and the Palestine Exploration Fund. He assists the PEF Curator as an assistant archivist and is a trustee and member of the PEF Committee. He serves also as the Hon. Secretary of the PEF.

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