About

I am a PhD Archaeologist and expert in Ancient Art. I have much experience in archaeological research projects and excavations across the Mediterranean, including Greece, Egypt, Israel, Turkey and Cyprus. I have collaborated with museums in excavation and digitization projects, such as the Egyptian Museum in Cairo and the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, as well as received fellowships at the Albright Institute in Jerusalem and the University of Edinburgh. I am currently writing a book on Mercenaries in the Ancient World (forthcoming 2021).

Ph.D. Classical Archaeology, University of Oxford (2018)

M.Phil. Classical Archaeology, University of Oxford (2014)

B.A. Honors in History, Classics and Archaeology, The George Washington University (2008)

My Research

I explore the material culture of the Classical and Hellenistic Eastern Mediterranean, especially on interconnectivity between the Aegean and Egypt. My recent fieldwork includes six seasons at the Athenian Agora and currently I excavate two Greco-Roman sites in Egypt, in the Fayyum (The Northeast Fayyum Lakeshore Project) and the Western Delta (Kom Wasit/Kom el-Ahmar). My research focuses on the exchanges and networks between the East and West and how these influences materialize in local communities and material culture, with a particular focus on weapons, ceramics and sculpture.

My past work investigated military and trade exchanges in the Mediterranean during the Bronze and Iron Age, including the causes and consequences of the Bronze Age collapse and the impacts on military hierarchies of the Early Iron Age in Greece.

My current book project expounds on these themes by exploring on the mercenary profession in the ancient world. I investigate the identification of mercenaries from their earliest appearances in the Bronze Age Near East until the sixth century BCE and how they can be archaeologically and textually traced within cross-cultural networks.

Selected Publications

Forthcoming Monograph: Ringheim 2021. Mercenaries in the Eastern Mediterranean. Brepols Publishers.

H. Ringheim 2020. ‘Hera and the Sea: Decoding Dedications at the Samian Heraion.’ Studia Hercynia 23 (1), 11-25.

Abstract

The paper examines the Near Eastern and Greek dedications at the Sanctuary of Hera in Samos during the 8th to 6th centuries BC. Contextualising the types of dedications and their origins indicate the identity of the dedicators, and whether they were Samians, other Greeks or from the Near East. Much scholarship has been devoted to the Samian Heraion and this paper contributes to these discussions by tracing the socio-economic and political objectives of the dedicators and bringing different theories into a single narrative. The paper presents a selection of votive dedications and connects them to four comprehensive themes and functions: firstly as a political act between states; as a display of social power; the growing trade routes and role of sanctuary markets; and finally, the other modes of contact that emerged, such as mercenaries and pirates. Overall, the Samian Heraion played an essential role as a timely crossroads between the East and West, where the dedication practices shed light on the various groups of dedicators.

H. Ringheim 2019. ‘Mediterranean Influences on Ceramics from the Small-scale Settlement of Al-Qarah al-Hamra.’ Journal of Ancient Egyptian Interconnections (23), 78-99.

Abstract
This paper explores the ceramic repertoire of Al-Qārah al-Ḥamrā, a small settlement in the Fayyūm, on the north shore of Lake Qārūn, dating from the Hellenistic to Early Roman period. A selection of significant typologies of local wares is discussed and contributes to the picture of what activities occurred at the site. The paper further contributes to the understanding of the infiltration of Greek ceramic shapes and influences, the impact this had on a local community, and the transition to Early Roman wares. The ceramics also evince the trade connections between the Fayyūm, and the rest of Egypt and the Mediterranean, indicating the extent of exchange and communication outside the Fayyūm. Such analysis is particularly relevant considering the paucity of archaeological data from small-scale Fayyūm settlements. Comparisons with Karanis, Tebtunis, and other larger sites point to a similarly diverse repertoire of materials and further stress the interconnectedness of this region.

H. Ringheim 2019. ‘The Pharaoh’s Fighters: Early Mercenaries in Egypt.’ In A Stranger in the House – Crossroads III. Prague, Charles University. Eds. J. Mynarova, et al. 341-354.

Abstract

This paper addresses one of the fundamental ways in which foreigners and Egyptiansinteracted during the third to second millennium: as foreign soldiers in the Egyptian army. Fre-quently it is suggested that these are mercenaries hired by the Egyptians; however, how accurateis this identification? When does a non-local fighter become a mercenary? To approach thesequestions, the paper examines specific examples from tomb inscriptions that document Nubianand Egyptian interactions and the circumstances that led to Nubians in the Egyptian military.The discussion then looks at the later Shardana contingent of the so-called Sea Peoples in the13thto 12thcenturies BC and the varying types of exchanges with the Egyptians, based on walliconography and texts. The process in which the Shardana infiltrate the Egyptian military sug-gests that in certain circumstances, they evince characteristics of mercenaries. The evidenceexemplifies the first instances when armies relied on foreign hires, a phenomenon that thenresonated throughout antiquity.

Forthcoming. Ringheim 2020. “Greek Mercenaries: An Archaeological Perspective.” In A Companion of Greek Mercenaries in the Classical Mediterranean and Hellenistic World, Warfare in the Ancient Mediterranean World Series. Edited by T. Fujii, D. Gómez-Castro, and M. Trundle. Brill.

In progress. Ringheim 2021. ‘Attic Imports and Imitations.’ In Kom Wasit and Kom el-Ahmar Excavations. Forthcoming Vol. 3.

Excavations

Kom el-Ahmar/Kom Wasit Archaeological Project | (2019-2021)

Northeast Fayyum Lakeshore Project, Egypt | (2017-2021)

Lefkandi Excavation, Greece | (2016-2017)

Athenian Agora, Greece | Assist. Supervisor (2014-2016), Archaeologist (2012-2013)

Hala Sultan Tekke, Cyprus | (2018)

Konya Regional Survey Project, Turkey | (2017)

Tel Kabri Excavations, Israel | (2009, 2011)

Tel Megiddo Excavations, Israel | (2010)

Contact

If you would like to get in contact, please feel free to send me a message.