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Wrede, Walther

    Full Name: Wrede, Walther

    Gender: male

    Date Born: 1893

    Date Died: 1990

    Home Country/ies: Germany

    Subject Area(s): Ancient Greek (culture or style), archaeology, and Classical


    Archaeologist and head of the DAI, Athens, during the Nazi period. Wrede was a high official in the Nazi party who took over the directorship of the DAI (Deutsches Archäologisches Institut) in Athens in 1937. Because his position was primarily focused on politicizing the functions of the Institute, most of the research was left to assistants, including Roland Hampe, Ernst Homann-Wedeking, Ulf Jantzen, and Frank Brommer. Wrede oversaw the Olympia excavations including the stadium, which Hitler hoped to publicize during the 1936 Olympic games in Berlin. Excavations were halted by the Greek government in 1940. Nazi occupation of Greece in 1941 reinstated some of Wrede’s work. In 1944, the Germans evacuated Greece and Wrede left with them. The only remaining Germans at the DAI were Jantzen and Hampe, now officers in the military.

    Selected Bibliography

    [dissertation, partially published as:] Kriegers Abschied und Heimkahr in der griechischen Kunst I. Jahrbuch der Philosophischen Fakultät in Marburg 1 (1921): 55-60; and Wirsing, Heinrich, and Lehmann-Hartleben, Karl, and Möbius, H. Untersuchungen an griechischen Theatern. Munich: Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1928; Attika. Athens: Deutsches Archäologisches Institut, 1934; Attische Mauern. Athens: Deutsches Archäologisches Institut, 1933.


    “German Archaeological Institute — Athens.” Encyclopedia of the History of Classical Archaeology. Nancy Thomson de Grummond, ed. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1996, vol. 1, pp. 495.


    "Wrede, Walther." Dictionary of Art Historians (website).

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