15.2. Lecture on leather tanning in Greek antiquity, Petra Pakkanen


Wednesday 15 February 2023 at 6 pm
Villa Lante al Gianicolo

From Skins to Leather: Tanning in Ancient Greece

Dr. Petra Pakkanen
Finnish Institute of Athens

The lecture is organized in collaboration with Amici di Villa Lante al Gianicolo

Tanning and leather production in Roman antiquity has recently attracted increasingly scholarly attention. However, our knowledge on equivalent practices in Greek antiquity is far patchier and often ignored. This lecture provides an overview with insights to detail to tanning in Greek antiquity. It will cover terminological issues relating to skins, leathers and their processing, provides an overview of tanning procedures on the basis of ancient Greek textual, epigraphic, iconographic and material evidence, and discusses the connection between tanning and sanctuaries. In the end the questions concerning tannery archaeology in Greece will be addressed.

Petra Pakkanen is the Director of the Finnish Institute at Athens. In her research she has specialist particularly in ancient Greek religion, its theoretical and practical aspects and has worked with the so-called ‘archaeology of cult’ also with reference to excavation projects in Greece. She has written extensively also on the theme of 19th-century philhellenism and its use in national discourses particularly in Northern Europe. Her current research interest concern leather production and the use of leather goods in ancient Greece, including the social and cultural aspects of tanneries and tanners.