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Fairbanks, Arthur

    Image Credit: Wikipedia

    Full Name: Fairbanks, Arthur

    Gender: male

    Date Born: 1864

    Date Died: 1944

    Place Born: Hanover, Grafton, NH, USA

    Place Died: Cambridge, Middlesex, MA, USA

    Home Country/ies: United States

    Subject Area(s): ancient and Classical

    Career(s): curators


    Boston Museum of Fine Arts Director and curator of classical art. Fairbanks graduated from Dartmouth College, class of 1886. He later attended Yale Divinity School and the Union Theology Seminary. Fairbanks moved to the University in Freiburg (im Breisgau), Germany, where he earned his Ph.D. in 1890. He returned to the United States where he taught classical studies at the universities of Michigan, Yale and Dartmouth. During the 1898-1899 year he was a fellow at the American School in Athens. In 1907, Fairbanks was appointed curator of classical art for the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. At the Boston museum, Fairbanks secured the acquisitions of the important finds acquired by the Museum by Edward P. Warren (1860-1928) and John Marshall (1862-1928), the gay couple who formed a team securing important works of sculpture and vase painting in Europe for the Museum earlier in the century. In 1908 Fairbanks was appointed Director of the Museum. Under his directorship the Museum moved to new facilities in Fenway Park. He retired from the Museum in 1925, continuing to teach at Dartmouth College.

    Selected Bibliography

    Athenian Lekythoi, with Outline Drawing in Glaze Varnish on a White Ground. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1907; Athenian Lekythoi with Outline Drawing in Matt Color on a White Ground. New York, The Macmillan Company; London, Macmillan & Co., Ltd., 1914; Catalogue of Greek and Etruscan Vases. Cambridge, MA: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston/Harvard University Press, 1928ff.; Greek Art: the Basis of Later European Art. New York: Longmans, Green, 1933; A Handbook of Greek Religion. New York: American Book Company, 1910.


    Chase, George H. “Archaeological News and Discussions.” American Journal of Archaeology 48 no. 2 (April 1944): 179-180; “Arthur Fairbanks.” Bulletin of the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston) 42 (1944): 20.


    "Fairbanks, Arthur." Dictionary of Art Historians (website).

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