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Michael Kerschner

Senior researcher

Dr. M. Kerschner
+31 71 527 2727

Dr. Michael Kerschner is Byvanck Fellow in Classical Archaeology and Art. Parallel to this position, as well as research associate at the Austrian Archaeological Institute of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna and responsible for the research focus “Cult and Sanctuary” there. His main field of expertise is the archaeology of Greek and Western Anatolian cultures in the Early Iron Age, the Archaic and the Classical period.

More information about Michael Kerschner

Office days

Thursday 10:30 - 12:00 and by arrangement


I am interested in Greek culture as part of a larger Mediterranean and Near Eastern network. My research explores sanctuaries and the archaeology of cult, the development of settlements, as well as culture and identity of Ionia and Lydia in the eastern Aegean – western Anatolian interface. The Early Iron Age, the Archaic and the Classical periods are my main areas of expertise in terms of chronology.

Together with five colleagues from the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Sweden and Germany I am cofounder of “Hieron: Network for the Study of Greek Sanctuaries”.

This network is a platform for informal exchange between researchers and students interested in transdisciplinary studies of Greek sanctuaries and cult from the Early Iron Age until Late Antiquity

I have carried out field projects in Turkey (Ephesos, Miletos, Teos in Ionia) and Greece (Lousoi in Arcadia) and studied the archaeological evidence from the Artemision of Ephesos, the sanctuary of Meter at Ephesos, the sanctuary of Artemis Kithone at Miletos and that of Artemis Hemera at Lousoi. Interdisciplinarity is a key aspect of all my projects. It is especially prominent in my archaeometric studies on the ceramic production of the eastern Aegean, Euboea and the northern Peloponnese in collaboration with the archaeometrists Hans Mommsen (Bonn) and Pamela Fragnoli (Vienna).

Teaching activities

Before coming to Leiden University, I was teaching at the universities of Münster (D), Vienna and Salzburg (A) since 1999. My courses cover different aspects of Greek archaeology (cult and sanctuaries, ethnic identity, houses and domestic life, sculpture, pottery, architecture, Early Greece, Greek settlements overseas, overviews on Greek culture).

I have been supervising BA, MA and PhD theses on different topics of Greek archaeology. I was external examiner of PhD theses at the universities of Aarhus, Bordeaux, Leuven, Oslo, Oxford and Pavia.

Curriculum vitae

I studied Classical Archaeology, Art History and Ancient History at the universities of Salzburg (MA 1990) and Bochum (PhD 1995). In 2009 I passed my habilitation at Salzburg University.

Professional activites:
since 2020    Byvanck Fellow in Classical Archaeology and Art at the Faculty of Archaeology of Leiden University (half-time), parallel to the position at the Austrian Archaeological Institute.

since 2017    Head of the research group “Cult and Sanctuary” at the Austrian Archeological Institute (OeAI) / Austrian Academy of Sciences (OeAW)

2013–2017    Head of the research focus “Pre-Hellenistic Ionia” at the Austrian
Archaeological Institute

since 2008    Head of the project „Pre-Hellenistic Ephesos“, including the sanctuary of Artemis of Ephesos (at the site of Ephesos)

since 2008    Regular guest lecturer (“Privatdozent”) at the University of Salzburg

2008–2009    Deputy director of the Ephesos excavation

since 2006    Head of the project „The sanctuary of Artemis Kithone in Miletos“ of Miletos excavation, since 2007 in cooperation with the Austrian Archaeological Institute.

2003-2019    In charge of the book requisitions of the library of the Austrian Archaeological Institute

since 2002    Head of the project „Artemision: stratigraphy and pottery“ of Ephesos excavation

since 2002    Research associate  of the Austrian Archaeological Institute in Vienna.

2000–2002    Editor of the scientific journal „Boreas. Münstersche Beiträge zur Archäologie“.

2000-2002    Assistant professor (C 1) at the Archaeological Seminar and Museum of the University of Münster (Germany).

1999–2008    Guest lecturer at the Institute of Classical Archaeology of the University of Vienna

since 1996    Long term creation of a data base of archaeometric pottery analyses concerning the ceramic production centres in the East Aegean and their exports within the Mediterranean and Black Sea together with H. Mommsen (University of Bonn) in cooperation with various international scholars

1995-2000    Research assistant of FWF projects (Nr. P 11032-SPR; P 11033-SPR) on the Geometric and Archaic pottery finds from Ephesos at the Austrian Archaeological Institute 

Senior researcher

  • Faculteit Archeologie
  • World Archaeology
  • Classical and Mediterranean Archaeology

Work address

Van Steenis
Einsteinweg 2
2333 CC Leiden



  • Austrian Archaeological Institute, Austrian Academy of Science Achaeologist, Senior researcher
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