Online Research

We live in a time, where everyone has access to an immense amount of free information within the blink of an eye, thanks to the internet. This is a stroke of luck for historical researchers, as long as you know where to search for quality information. This is a list of websites and tools we often use for the online-research of life in ancient Greece.

  • The Google image search allows you to easily get an overview of certain topics, and find pages, which maybe already offer in-depth knowledge you are looking for. The reverse image search allows you to find additional information for an image you might have found on a page with lacking contextual information.
  • Google Scholar is a search engine for scientific publications. Many historical articles are published in scientific magazines and are hard to get. However, articles can often be acquired via multiple sources, where some are free, and some require payment or membership. Google Scholar finds all available online sources for a publication, and with a bit of luck, you will find a free download. With a bit of patience, and guessing what the title might be, you can also find publications you didn't even know about before.
  • Some museums offer access to their exhibition via an online catalogue. The best of them allow you to search their exhibitions by various criteria, such as a simple chronological filter, or even a filter based on materials used in the object or the type of object itset. We can recommend the Met Museum, the British Museum, and the Harvard Arts Museums.
  • Websites of auction houses and antiquity traders, such as Christies, Edgar L. Owen, Hixenbaugh, or Ancient Resource, can often help to find high quality pictures of various items. But please take the information regarding date and location of the find with a grain of salt, as you can often not verify where the item is coming from, and what is its history.
  • Online catalogues of excavations are exceedingly rare. Luckily, one of the biggest excavations in ancient Greece has one, the excavations of the Athenian Agora. You can discover countless pottery items, but also other items of daily life here.
  • Link-aggregators, such as Pinterest, can shorten your research immensely, if you happen to stumble across the collection of someone, who has previously researched your topic. Pinterest offers a lot of collections for antiquity in general, from historical cooking to ancient jewellery.
  • A large part of our knowledge of ancient Greece is based on the historians of antiquity. The perseus project of Tufts University provides access to many ancient literary pieces, in their original form or translated. You can search the texts by keywords, and easily find paragraphs dealing with certain topics. The University of Chicago offers the same sources with a different search engine. Another source for historical literature is the Internet Ancient History Sourcebook of Fordham University.
  • Similar to both excavation catalogues and text databases are online collections of ancient inscriptions. Attic Inscriptions Online collects inscriptions from ancient Athens and Attika translated to English.
  • Online picture databases, such as Flickr or Wikimedia Commons, allow you to glimpse into museums you are currently not able to visit yourself. By searching for the name of the museum, or the name of the item you are looking for with the added keyword museum, you might stumble across vacation pictures showing exactly what you are looking for. On the professional side, Lessing Images is a picture database specialised in museum exhibits, where you can find pictures of a lot of items.