Dr Humphris will begin by outlining some of the highlights of the long-term collaborative relationship between the British Institute in Eastern Africa and the Ethiopian Cultural Heritage Authority (the ARCCH) during the investigation of Ethiopia’s spectacular archaeological history, and some of the exciting plans for future cooperation. She will then outline the main results from her research in Ethiopia, presenting the first information available concerning Ancient Aksumite iron production.
Dr Finneran will present some of the fundamental results of the research he conducted under the supervision of renowned Ethiopian expert Professor David Phillipson in northern Ethiopia. In a broad-ranging presentation he will explore aspects of early Aksum, shrine archaeology, and kingship and monasticism in medieval Ethiopia.
About the speakers:
Dr Jane Humphris is the Director of the British Institute in Eastern Africa (BIEA), one of the British Academy’s international research institutes. She is also a Senior Research Fellow at the McDonald Institute at the University of Cambridge. She holds a PhD in African Archaeometallurgy and an MA in African Archaeology from UCL. Her main research focuses on ancient African iron production technologies. As well as running excavations at the Royal City of Meroe in Sudan, in 2015 she began the first dedicated archaeometallurgical research in Ethiopia.
Dr Niall Finneran is an Africanist Archaeologist by training and is a Reader in Historical Archaeology and Heritage Studies at the University of Winchester. His PhD, from the University of Cambridge, focused on the landscape archaeology of Aksum, northern Ethiopia. Following his PhD Dr Finneran conducted extensive landscape archaeology and oral history research at the site of Lalibela. In 2007 he published a book titled ‘The Archaeology of Ethiopia’ (Routledge), which remains a key text for students and those interested in Ethiopia’s rich history.
H.E. Mr Fesseha Shawel Gebre assumed his duties as the newly-appointed Ethiopian Ambassador to the United Kingdom in March 2018. Ambassador Fesseha brings with him almost 30 years of experience having served at Diplomatic Missions in Juba, Nairobi, Mogadishu and Cairo, as well as various posts within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.