||This master’s thesis aim is to investigate approaches to collecting and the formation of collections in Graeco-Roman antiquity with a special focus on collecting practices in Hellenistic Pergamum, Alexandria, Lindos, and Late Republican Rome. Ancient and modern collectors share at least one similarity: a genuine interest in the past that they try to preserve and revitalise through objects. Hitherto, research projects on archetypes of museums in Antiquity were mainly conducted within the theoretical framework of current museum studies. This project, however, aims to scrutinise the impact artefacts and works of art used to have on the ancient societies and individuals. In order to achieve this, this thesis will draw from memory and identity studies, actor-network-theory, and cultural object biography. Furthermore, the mutual relationship between individuals/communities and artefacts entering society will be emphasised. Due to its cross-disciplinary approach, the project’s goal is to contribute in manifold manners to issues in current research on museum archetypes and origins of collections. Through this broad focus, we will hopefully be able to gain a better understanding of the role and function of collections in the aforementioned timeline and cultural settings.
After scrutinizing current historiography on this topic and evaluation thereof, I am going to present criteria for collecting practices and collections in general, and subsequently, for ancient collecting habits in particular. In order to fully enlighten these criteria, it is crucial to illuminate them with suitable case studies.