Dr Charlotte Potts

Academic Background

I joined Oxford as the Sybille Haynes lecturer after an enjoyable career as a content developer for museum exhibitions and visitor attractions in New Zealand, Australia, Southeast Asia, and the United Kingdom, between degrees from Victoria University of Wellington (New Zealand), University College London, and the University of Oxford. These experiences have given me special interest in the stories we tell about the past through its material culture.

Research Interests

My research focuses on using archaeology, and in particular architecture, to reconstruct the beliefs, institutions, and economies of societies with little or no surviving literature. I am especially interested in how the remains of buildings reveal information about perceptions of the divine and the role of cult, as shown by my work on the civic, social, and economic functions of temples in Archaic central Italy. My research also challenges traditional divisions between pre-Roman and Roman archaeology by examining continuities in material culture and refining our perceptions of early Rome.

Research Keywords

Archaic Italy; Etruscan archaeology; Roman art and architecture; museum studies.


My teaching likewise spans pre-Roman and Roman material. I teach papers on the archaeology of Italy between the Iron Age and end of the Roman Empire, and have special interests in Roman art and the archaeology of religion.


Full publications: