Cultural Interactions and Migration in the Ancient World

We are interested in how the various cultural, political, ethnic and migratory groups of Antiquity defined their respective identities, in the strategies they developed to interact successfully with others, and in the religious beliefs and practices that underlay and shaped these processes.

We study these questions from an interdisciplinary perspective, combining more traditional historical and epigraphic approaches with methodologies deriving from archaeology and the sciences. Archaeological fieldwork as well as inscriptional projects from the core of the several major research projects we are in the process of conducting.

In terms of chronology and geography, we focus on the history of the ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern World from the Archaic Period (800 BCE) all the way down to the early Middle Ages (600 CE). Our projects place special emphasis on the study of the Archaic and Classical period in Greece, on Hellenism in the Near East, on Roman and early Christian culture both in Rome and in the Netherlands, and on Jewish Diasporic history and archaeology.  


The research conducted by the Ancient Culture research group is embedded in two of Utrecht University strategic themes Institution for Open Societies and Migration and Societal Change.

On a national level the group works together with OIKOS, the National Research School in Classical Studies, for example in the Anchoring Innovation research agenda.

Areas of expertise: classical archaeology | ancient religions | cultural interactions | Greek poleis | Hellenistic world | early Christianity | diaspora | Jewish history | sanctuaries | classical mythology | kingship and court culture | institutions | cultural heritage | Roman empire | borders and borderlands | military history