Fig. 1: View of the cast collection on the second floor of the main building after its emigration from the old university. © Department of Archaeology Graz.
Fig. 1
Fig. 2: So-called “Cretan room” of the Department of Archeology around 1980. © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 2

The foundation of the Archeological Collections of the University of Graz as an archeological museum, consisting of a collection of original artifacts and casts, took place in 1865. The initiative went back to a classical philologist, Karl Schenkl, who wanted a collection of casts and original artifacts for the education of his students. The archeological cabinet should primarily contain resources for the lectures on Greek and Roman art, provide a basis for the better education of teachers-to-be of philology and history and be assistance for the continuing education of artists. If the collection became large enough, it would also be made accessible for the public. The collection should contain original artifacts, plaster casts and photographs. It should be a part of the University of Graz and property of the state. The financing should not only come from national side, but also from lectures, donations and beneficences. From 1867 on the collection was accommodated in a room of the old university. It was made accessible for the public on Thursdays and Sundays for one hour. Since 1868 also a Collection of Original Coins belonged to the original artifacts.  The cataloging of the coins was taken over by the ancient historian Friedrich Pichler. From the original artifacts that were acquired from 1865 on, a part was donated and other pieces were bought. Until 1870 the rooms were already used to capacity.

Fig. 3: Portrait gallery in the north wing of the main building until 1990.  © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 3

Since 1894 the collection was called Department of Archeology. The further history of the Archeological Collection of the Department of Archeology is closely connected with the history of the professorship for Classical Archeology.  In 1894 the Department of Archeology moved into the new university building, where adequate space for the collection was provided on the second floor of the main building (Fig. 1). With five rooms the collection covered the whole western wing of the main building. However this space, which was originally reserved for the collection only, reduced itself later by the establishment of the library in the two front rooms. A glass roof provided an adequate lighting for a museum. Bomb fragments damaged this glass roof in 1945 and it was only temporary renovated instead of totally repaired. Erna Diez decided herself in 1967 against a restoration and for the installation of an appropriate artificial light in the museum.

Fig. 4: Friezes of the Siphnian Treasury in the north wing of the main building since 1990. © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 4

At first the library was accommodated in an area on the second floor of the south wing of the main building. Resulting from a shortage of space the establishment of a Seminar for Archeology and Epigraphy followed in 1900. Out of this seminar the Department of Ancient History and the Department of Classical Archeology splintered. The Department of Ancient History received the Coin Collection and the Department of Classical Archeology got the Collection of Original Artifacts and Casts. The further development of the Cast Collection mainly stopped since World War I. A doubtful attempt to add Minoan artifacts to the collection was made by Arnold Schober in the 1930ies and 1940ies, who tried to establish a Department of Cretan Studies in Graz.  In 1942 his assistant, August Schörgenhofer, brought a box with 502 Neolithic and late Minoan fragments to Graz, which he was given in return for his work for the German "Kunstschutz" (Art Protection) in Crete. In 1945 the fragments were exhibited in two showcases in the so-called "Cretan room" of the Department of Archeology (Fig. 2). In proceedings with the British government together with an ambassador of the Greek government in the years 1947 and 1948 the agreement was achieved that the fragments, which came from British excavations, should stay in Graz in exchange for books from the library of the Department. In this way the supply of Minoan fragments was legalized afterwards.

Fig. 5: Collection of original artifacts in the Department of Archeology. © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 5
Fig. 6: Mosaic floor from Flavia Solva at the northern staircase. © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 6

From the Second World War on it was not until Thuri Lorenz in the 1980ies and 1990ies that the attempt was made to revive the Cast Collection as well as the Collection of Original Artifacts. First of all, the portrait gallery, which had been posted separately, had to be included in the exhibition rooms (Fig. 3).
In order to create space for the portraits some of the friezes had to be transferred (Fig. 4).
The most beautiful fragments were arranged in new showcases. One showcase was reserved for artifacts of the excavations at the vicus of Kalsdorf near Graz (Fig. 5). A very interesting and important piece of the collection is a mosaic floor, which was found in 1877 at excavations in Flavia Solva, Styria (Fig. 6).
In 1883 Franz Joseph I of Austria donated it to the university. Currently the rooms of the museum have to accommodate the artifacts and casts, as well as students and project workers. This causes a shortage of space, but also a positive impact on archeological working. A solution for this space problem could be a separation of the Department and the collection, which would be less desirable, because of the mentioned reason.

(E.P.)

 

Here you will find detailed informations about the history of the Cypriote collection

 

Bibliography

St. Karl, Hokus Pokus Fidibus. Eine Spurensuche zum sogenannten unteritalischen Grabfund im Institut für Archäologie der Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, RÖ- 28,2005,177-184
M. Lehner, Die Artefakte der Sesklo- und Diminikultur sowie der Bronzezeit Thessaliens am Institut für klassische Archäologie der Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, masch. Diplomarbeit (Graz 1988)
M. Lehner, Zur Originalsammlung des Archäologischen Museums der Universität Graz, in: Komos. Festschrift für Th. Lorenz (Wien 1997) 279-285
M. Lehner - Th. Lorenz - G. Schwarz, Griechische und italische Vasen aus der Sammlung des Instituts für Klassische Archäologie der Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz (Veröffentlichungen des Instituts für Klassische Archäologie der Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz I, Graz 1993)
U. Lohner, Bronzezeitliche Keramik von Phylakopi auf Melos am Institut für klassische Archäologie der Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, masch. Diplomarbeit (Graz 1992)
Th. Lorenz, Mosaikboden aus Flavia Solva, in: Echo. Beiträge zur Archäologie des mediterranen und alpinen Raumes. Johannes B. Trentini zum 80. Geburtstag gewidmet von seinen Freunden und Verehrer (Innsbruck 1990) 223-226
Th. Lorenz, Icarus. Sein Bild als Zeichen des Lebens auf norischen und pannonischen Grabmonumenten, in: Ikarus. Gedenkschrift für Gerhild Jeschek (VKI IV, Wien o.J.) 47-53
E. Murlasits, Mykenische Keramik am Institut für klassische Archäologie der Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, masch. Diplomarbeit (Graz 1992)
E. Pichl, Die Geschichte des Faches Archäologie an der Universität Graz bis 1914, masch. Hausarbeit (Graz 1978)
E. Pochmarski, Herakles und der nemeische Löwe auf einer Lekythos in Graz, in: Forschungen und Funde, Festschrift für Bernhard Neutsch (Innsbruck 1980) 341-348
E. Pochmarski, Streiflichter auf die Geschichte der Archäologischen Sammlung der Universität Graz, NachBlAGStmk 2000-2002, 31-42
E. Pochmarski, Die Anfänge des archäologischen Instituts und der archäologischen Sammlung in Graz, in: Probleme und Perspektiven der klassischen und provinzialrömischen Archäologie. Sammelband zum 10. Jahrestag der Fakultät für Humanistik und zum 5. Jahrestag des Lehrstuhls für Klassische Archäologie der Trnava-Universiät in Trnava, (Trnava 2002) (Anodos - Supplementum 2) 23-34
G. Schwarz, Eine neue Amphora des Sabouroff-Malers, AA,1972,41-46
G. Schwarz, Der Alkimachos-Maler in Graz, AntK 17,1974,36-38
G. Schwarz, Ein unbekanntes Werk des Yale Lekythos-Malers, AA,1974,240-247
F. G. Smekal, Alma Universitas. Die Geschichte der Grazer Universität in vier Jahrhunderten (Wien 1967)
G. Wrolli - M. Handy - St. Karl, Richard Knabl (1789-1874) - Ein steirischer Priester und Altertumswissenschaftler des 19. Jahrhunderts, ZHVSt 96, 2005, 269-308; bes. 300-303

List of illustrations

Fig. 1: View of the cast collection on the second floor of the main building after its emigration from the old university. © Institut für Archäologie.
Fig. 2:
So-called "Cretan room" of the Department of Archeology around 1980. © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 3:
Portrait gallery in the north wing of the main building until 1990. © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 4:
Friezes of the Siphnian Treasury in the north wing of the main building since 1990. © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 5:
Collection of original artifacts in the Department of Archeology. © E. Pochmarski.
Fig. 6:
Mosaic floor from Flavia Solva at the northern staircase. © E. Pochmarski.