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Erik Wetter and the genesis of the San Giovenale excavations
By Fredrik Tobin-Dodd (Swedish Institute in Rome, Italy)
The Swedish excavations at San Giovenale (1956–1965) had a major impact in the field of pre-Roman archaeology in Italy, primarily through the discovery of remains of both Etruscan and earlier domestic architecture. This article examines the genesis of the project, and suggests that the early history of the project has sometimes been misrepresented. While the excavations came to serve as a training-ground for young Swedish archaeologists and made very important contributions to the study of ancient domestic architecture, these were not explicit goals at the conception of the project. The article also studies the peculiar role of Admiral Erik Wetter in the San Giovenale excavations. Despite not being an archaeologist himself, Wetter was both the instigator and, in many ways, the driving force behind the project. The result was an unusual and unclear leadership situation, something that in the long run created problems for the project.
Fredrik Tobin-Dodd, ‘Erik Wetter and the genesis of the San Giovenale excavations’, Opuscula. Annual of the Swedish Institutes at Athens and Rome (OpAthRom) 13, Stockholm 2020, 223–234. ISSN: 2000-0898. ISBN: 978-91-977799-2-0. https://doi.org/10.30549/opathrom-13-09