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Hankey, Vronwy Mary, née Fisher, 1916-1998 (archaeologist)



Awarded a First in Classics at Girton College, Cambridge, Vronwy Fisher joined the British School at Athens in 1938, excavating with V. Desborough under the directorship of R. W. Hutchinson at Knossos, Crete, returning to that dig in 1940. In between, in 1939 she assisted A. J. B. Wace at Mycenae. In 1941 she married the diplomat Henry Hankey, with whom she had three sons and a daughter. She published her Euboean survey (BSA vol. 47) and during their diplomatic posting to Beirut (1962-1966) her expertise in Mycenaean and Minoan pottery enabled her to identify Mycenaean imports in Syria and Palestine and their relationship to Cypriot wares. She undertook a re-analysis of the Mycenaean ceramics of el Amarna in Egypt, bringing together the Nile and the Aegean as interconnected culture spheres. She identified Cyprus as the crucial link between East Mediterranean shipping in the Late Bronze Age. From 1970, based in London, she excavated at Myrtos Pyrgos in Crete, studying in particular the pottery and stone vessels, and thereafter until her last study visit to Crete in 1992, she developed her thinking upon Minoan vessels and Aegean trade routes (co-author of Bronze Age Chronology, 1989). The Vronwy Hankey Memorial Fund for Aegean Studies, awarded by the British School at Athens, supports research in the prehistory of the Aegean and its connections with the East Mediterranean.

Found in 8 Collections and/or Records:


Letter from James Stewart in Kyrenia, Cyprus, re artefacts for Cambridge and continuing debates over chronology, 1937-10-12

Reference Code: GBR/3437/AJBW/2/1/24/33
Scope and Contents

Addressed "P. O. Box 13, Kyrenia', dated 12 October1937. Stewart writes of 12 cases of artefacts to be send to Louis Clarke in Cambridge, an article in train on the 'Palestinian pot' by V. Fisher and a visit to the Mycenaean site at Lefka. He continues to wrestle with issues of chronology, to which Virginia Grace is contributing her expertise.

Dates: 1937-10-12

Letter from Vronwy Fisher re her recent visit to Mycenae, 1939-03-29

Reference Code: GBR/3437/AJBW/2/1/7/2
Scope and Contents

Fisher writes to Wace about her recent visit to Mycenae. She describes her visit in detail and updates him on the condition of the site and the finds. She says that she has been unable to track down any metope fragments in Nafplio. She ends by discussing her plans for the coming months and several lectures she has been to recently.

Dates: 1939-03-29

Letter from Vronwy Fisher re her recent work and activities , 1939-02-23

Reference Code: GBR/3437/AJBW/2/1/7/1
Scope and Contents Fisher begins by apologising for misleading AJBW about the size of the tholos. She updates Wace on the publication of the tholos and says that she will be doing the small finds. She then updates Wace on her activities in Athens and describes a kouros found in the agora in great detail. She puzzles over the use of moulds in archaic Greece. Fisher then discusses her work in Euboea: she has not been able to go to Chalkis yet, but she lists examples of prehistoric evidence from the area. She...
Dates: 1939-02-23

Letter from Vronwy Fisher re her recent work and activities , 1939-04-07

Reference Code: GBR/3437/AJBW/2/1/7/3
Scope and Contents Fisher first discusses the dating of the beehive tomb on Crete she has been excavating, including details about its architecture and the mason's marks. She briefly mentions the pot sherds and compares to the tomb to those at Mycenae. She tells AJBW about her work on Rhodes, before describing her recent trip to Euboea. She details her work on tombs and pot sherds near Chalkis. Fisher ends by discussing her plans for the next year, and the scholarships she is applying for. She encloses several...
Dates: 1939-04-07

Letter from Vronwy Fisher re prehistoric sites on Euboea, 1939-06-08

Reference Code: GBR/3437/AJBW/2/1/7/4
Scope and Contents

Fisher writes with good news from Euboea: she has found several prehistoric sites, including an interesting site at Vatheia with Mycenaean pottery. She describes her experience digging on Crete in more detail and tells Wace to come out to see te beehive tomb. She says that she has also visited a dig in Lasithi and discusses her plans for the next few weeks.

Dates: 1939-06-08

Mycenae Excavations 1939 Vronwy Fisher, 1939

Reference Code: GBR/3437/MCNE/1/1/22
Scope and Contents

Excavation notebook for the Prehistoric Cemetery compiled by Vronwy Fisher. Includes detailed sketch plans, section drawings, measurements and papse notes throughout. Records the number of workmen and barrows in operation each day. Areas covered are Schliemann's Dump, Hellenistic House, Theatre, Gymnasium, Middle and Late Helladic Cemetery. The last entry records the photographs taken in Nauplion Museum at the close of the excavation season.

Dates: 1939

Nauplia Study Season 1967, Administration, 1966 - 1967

Reference Code: GBR/3437/WDTR/1/12/2
Scope and Contents

Notes on the 1967 study season in Nauplia. Includes lists of photostats, correspondence with the Greek archaeological authorities, notes on excavated pottery, notes on planned publications, and correspondence with Vronwy Hankey.
I photograph of a pottery tripod offering table, 'Inv. A. P. Museum np. 60 B'.

Dates: 1966 - 1967

Recent Mycenaean Data, 1961 - 1982

Reference Code: GBR/3437/WDTR/1/7/14
Scope and Contents Brief typescript notes by WDT on articles recently read, Report on Petrological Characterisations of Early Aegean Ceramics Summary of Dated Chamber Tombs Mycenaean Geography Colloquium provisional programme with Linear B hand out and Glossary, undated, convened by John Chadwick 1 monochrome photograph of a map of Mycenae from Steffan's article Late Bronze Age Wreck near the Gulf of Adalya, 1960, notes of a report from Joan du Plat Taylor and a handwritten letter...
Dates: Other: 1961 - 1982

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Cyprus (island) 1