Archaeological Reports

Article

Recent Acquisitions and Conservation of Antiquities at the Ure Museum, University of Reading 2004–2008

A. L. Harrisa1

a1 University of Birmingham

The Ure Museum of Greek Archaeology, in the Department of Classics at the University of Reading, has experienced something of a renaissance in the 3rd millennium. It acquired status as a registered museum in 2001 and accreditation in 2008. It has boasted a bespoke web-accessible database since 2002 and a professionally designed website since 2004 (www.reading.ac.uk/ure). Finally, in 2005 its physical display was completely redesigned. While the existence of the Museum and some of its collections have long been well known to scholars of Gr vases – thanks to the tireless efforts of Percy and Annie Ure in the first half of the 20th Ct, including their 1954 publication of Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum. Great Britain 12. University of Reading (London, Oxford University Press, 1954), AR 9 (1962–1963) and some listings in Beazley and Trendall's volumes (see J.D. Beazley, Attic Red-figure Vase-painters, 2nd ed. [Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1963], A.D. Trendall and A. Cambitoglou, The Red-figured Vases of Apulia [Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1978–1982], A.D. Trendall, The Red-figured Vases of Lucania, Campania and Sicily (Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1967) – much of the collection remains unknown. Even in the 1960s, after all, the publication of fragments, lamps and Cypriote ceramics remained unfashionable. And the Ures, experts in Gr pottery, were little interested in publishing the Egyptian artefacts (approximately a 5th of the displayed collection) and other non-ceramic artefacts. As part of the Ure Museum's renaissance, University of Reading staff and students are researching and gradually publishing its hidden treasures: A.C. Smith, Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum. Great Britain 23. Reading Museum Service (Reading Borough Council) (Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2007) documents more than 150 vases, most in the Ure Museum, from the Reading Museum Service (Reading Borough Council); a forthcoming fascicule of the Corpus of Cypriote Antiquities will catalogue the Cypriote holdings in the Ure Museum; and another volume of Corpus Vasorum Antiquorum will detail approximately 200 holdings of the Ure Museum that are hitherto unpublished. The items discussed below, however, are those that have been acquired by the Ure Museum since 2004, as well a sample of the 19 Coptic textile fragments, which have been brought out of storage, conserved by the Textile Conservation Centre in Winchester and are now displayed in the Ure Museum (since 2005).