Dr Milena Melfi

People type:
Academic Background

I am an archaeologist of the ancient Greek world. I received my education in Classics at the University of Pisa and in Classical Archaeology at the University of Messina. Prior to coming to Oxford I was a Fellow of the Italian and British Schools of Archaeology in Athens, of the American Academy in Rome and of the Center for Hellenic Studies at Harvard University. I have worked on surveys and excavations in Greece, Sicily and Albania. Since 2004, I am the assistant curator of the collection of casts of Greek and Roman sculptures at the Ashmolean Museum, and I teach Classical archaeology for the Faculty of Classics and  New College.

Research Interests

My research interests focus on the redefinition of the role, functioning and frequentation of Greek religious sites, starting from the combined study of material and written sources. My present work is mainly directed at the interpretation of the archaeology and history of Greek sanctuaries in Late Hellenistic and Early Roman times. Since 2008 I have been directing a team from the University of Oxford in the joint Italian-Albanian-UK excavations at Hadrianopolis (Albania) and have been engaged in the study and publication of the finds from the site. In the last few years I have been able to start fieldwork in sites more directly related to my research on the religious sites of the ancient world: in 2016 I started a new field project in the Plutonium or Sanctuary of Hades at Hadrian’s Villa in Tivoli (Rome) and from last year I am involved in the excavations of the Sanctuary of Poseidon and Amphitrite in the Greek island of Tenos.


Full Publications: dr_milena_melfi_full_list_of_publications.pdf

Selected Publication:

  • Region: Lazio; Province: Rome; Site: Tivoli

  • Reconstruction of a Segment of the UNESCO World Heritage Hadrian’s Villa Tunnel Network by Integrated GPR, Magnetic–Paleomagnetic, and Electric Resistivity Prospections

  • Sanctuaries and Greek poleis: an architectural approach

  • A cast, a bird and a queen

  • Antinous Boy Made God

  • More
List of site pages