Vol. 13 No. 2 (2016): Energy Efficiency in Buildings " Building physics and environmental control

Teaching the 'Science of Antiquities' in the Late Ottoman Turkey: Eckhardt Unger and 'İlm-i Asar-ı atika Medhali' [Introduction to the Science of Antiquities]

Gül Cephanecigil
Department of Architecture, Faculty of Architecture, Istanbul Technical University, Istanbul, Turkey

Published 2016-08-08


  • Antiquities,
  • Archaeology Education,
  • Ottoman Empire

How to Cite

Cephanecigil, G. (2016). Teaching the ’Science of Antiquities’ in the Late Ottoman Turkey: Eckhardt Unger and ’İlm-i Asar-ı atika Medhali’ [Introduction to the Science of Antiquities]. A|Z ITU JOURNAL OF THE FACULTY OF ARCHITECTURE, 13(2), 175–184. https://doi.org/10.5505/itujfa.2016.46320


Archaeology, art and architectural history, and aesthetics were all new fields of intellectual activity in the late Ottoman era. Even as some of them were being taught in institutions of higher education and articles were appearing in journals and newspapers on these subjects, it was difficult to name their development as the emergence of separate new disciplines. Rather, the general tableau they presented was a composite area of interest with a high degree of interpenetration. As for courses in academic institutions, the professors usually were not trained in these areas and the courses had neither continuity nor a precisely defined content. We have to admit that our knowledge of these courses is rather restricted as well. For most of them, only the name of the course and/or the name of the professor is known. In this context, the notes of the ilmi asar-ı atika medhali [introduction to the science of antiquities] lectures given by the German archaeologist Eckhard Unger at Darülfünun [University] appear to be a valuable source that may help to clarify the notion of ilmi asar-ı atika and to shed light on the history of archaeological education in the Ottoman Empire.