Timothy W. Potter

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Tim Potter
Timothy William Potter

(1944-07-06)6 July 1944
Died11 January 2000(2000-01-11) (aged 55)

Timothy William Potter (6 July 1944 – 11 January 2000) was a prominent archaeologist of ancient Italy, as well as of Roman Britain, best known for his focus on landscape archaeology.


Potter was educated at March Grammar School in March, Cambridgeshire, where his father Cedric Potter was headmaster. He followed his brother Christopher to Trinity College, Cambridge, where he read anthropology and archaeology, graduating with a 2:1 in 1966 and obtained his Ph.D. in 1974; his Ph.D. thesis was entitled Archaeological Topography of the Central and Southern Ager Faliscus. [1] In the 1980s Potter excavated at Stonea, a Roman settlement in the fens of Cambridgeshire. [2]

Potter was a student of John Bryan Ward-Perkins and a member of the South Etruria Survey conducted by the British School at Rome. As part of the survey Potter worked on the Ager Faliscus leading to two influential books, A Faliscan Town in South Etruria: Excavations at Narce 1966-71 (1976) and The changing landscape of South Etruria (1979). The survey also led to his important excavations at Monte Gelato (1986-1990) [3] and Narce (1966-1971). [4] Potter also authored a popular course textbook entitled Roman Italy (1987) as part of the Exploring Roman World series published by British Museum Publishing. [5] Together with Catherine Johns, he also wrote the Roman Britain title in the series.

Potter taught at the University of Lancaster (1973-1978) where he instituted a new archaeology program. In 1978 he moved to the British Museum and their department of Prehistoric and Romano-British Antiquities, serving as assistant keeper from 1978 to 1995 and keeper from 1995 until his death.



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  1. Potter, T., & University of Cambridge. (1974). The Archaeological Topography of the Central and Southern Ager Foliscus.
  2. Potter, T. W., Catherine Johns, David Hall, Mark Hassall, and David Shotter. “The Roman Occupation of the Central Fenland.” Britannia 12 (1981): 79–133. https://doi.org/10.2307/526244.
  3. Potter, T., King, A. C, & British School at Rome. (1997). Excavations at the Mola di Monte Gelato : A Roman and medieval settlement in South Etruria. (Archaeological monographs of the British School at Rome ; no 11). British School at Rome.
  4. Potter, T. (1976). A Faliscan town in south Etruria : Excavations at Narce, 1966-71 / by T.W. Potter. (Supplementary publications (British School at Rome)). London ([1 Lowther Gardens, Exhibition Rd, SW7 2AA]): The British School at Rome.
  5. Potter, T. (1987). Roman Italy / T.W. Potter. (Exploring the Roman world). London: British Museum Publications.
  6. Dyson, Stephen L. “Timothy William Potter, 1944-2000.” American Journal of Archaeology 104, no. 3 (2000): 589–90. http://www.jstor.org/stable/507230.