Olwen Brogan

This British archaeologist and authority on Roman Libya majored in Roman Studies and Roman Archaeology at University College London but learned excavation techniques in Britain under Mortimer Wheeler at Verulamium and Caerleon. Her M.A. thesis investigated the Roman frontier in Germany, and in the 1930's she participated in excavations at the hill fort reputed to be the site of Gergovia. She joined the faculty of University College London, but her marriage to the historian Denis Brogan, which produced four children, limited her activity somewhat until after World War II, when she took part in British archaeological work in Libya at Sabratha with Kathleen Kenyon and at Lepcis Magna with John Ward-Perkins. In the mid-1950's she began work at Ghirza, a Roman village including large fortified farms and two cemeteries with monumental stone tombs. She spent most of the '50's and '60's in the Libyan desert and was a founder of the Society for Libyan Studies and the first editor of its annual Report (now the Journal of Libyan Studies). When her husband died in 1974, Olwen married Charles Hackett and stayed in Tripoli to continue her work. The next decade saw the Hacketts return to England, with the Society for Libyan Studies organizing a conference in her honor at Cambridge. She died in her 89th year, generally acknowledged as the leading authority on Tripolitania.

Author of biography: David Mattingly
Includes bibliography? No

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Keywords: Tripoli, UNESCO, Libyan Valleys Survey, Roman Libya, Roman Gaul, Caesar, University College London, Mortimer Wheeler, Tessa Wheeler, Kathleen Kenyon, Denis Brogan, British School at Rome, Sabratha, John Ward-Perkins, Lepcis Magna, Ghirza, Richard Goodchild, Society for Libyan Studies, Charles Hackett, Libyan Antiquities Service, OBE, Cambridge, Tripolitania, Philip Kenrick, North Africa, Emilio Vergera-Caferelli, David Smith, Punic, Wadi el-amud, Joyce Reynolds, Roman military works, tombs at Ghirza, Hellenistic, Henschir el-Ausaf, Tunisian Gefara, Wadi Neina, Bei el-Kebir, Misurata, Zliten, Hadd Hajar, Gergovia, Wadi Megenin, Roman frontier

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Breaking Ground: Pioneering Women Archaeologists
Published by the University of Michigan Press, 2004