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Centre for Classical and Near Eastern Studies of Australia

A marketplace of ideas on ancient worlds
A collaborative venture, hosting research projects that span the classics, ancient history and archaeology, and home to an extensive library and archive.

About us

The Centre for Classical and Near Eastern Studies of Australia is the home of a number of groups, interests and projects. We collaborate on exciting projects and research interests from the Discipline of Classics and Ancient History, Discipline of Archaeology, Australian Archaeological Institute at Athens, Near Eastern Archaeology Foundation and the Mediterranean Archaeology Journal.

At the University of Sydney, graduate students, staff and visiting scholars studying the ancient world may apply for access to the library, reading room, offices, boardroom, and meeting room. The library contains more than 10,000 books from three major collections covering ancient theatre, Greek and Latin texts, and Mediterranean archaeology.


CCANESA  hosts a number of seminar series:

  • The Near Eastern Archaeology Foundation (NEAF) seminar series
  • Archaeology at Sydney seminars
  • Australian Archaeological Institute at Athens (AAIA) seminars
Classics and Ancient History:
  • Classics and Ancient History Seminar Series
    Details of our seminars can be found on the School of Humanities link on the University's What's On calendar.

How to register for our seminars

  • If you already on the mailing list for one of the seminars above, you will automatically receive a Zoom invitation to our upcoming seminars. 
  • Please complete this form to register for all our seminar series.
    Once complete, we will send you invitations to our attend online seminars. If you do not receive an invitation, please contact

Research projects

Professor Julia Kindt was awarded a Future Fellowship covering 2018-2022 to develop her research into ancient anthropology and human-animal relations. This award provides funding for a four-year project to examine how the line between humans and animals is drawn and redrawn in ancient texts and contexts.

This will be the first systematic study ever undertaken of the patterns of use made of the theatre by tyrants, regents, kings and emperors. A major international colloquium was held in 2018 and included associated public lectures which are now being developed for a published volume. 

This project, by Professor Alison Betts, aims to explore the importance of Zoroastrianism of images of Avestan gods in Uzbekistan and enhance understanding of one of the world’s significant religions.

This project seeks to understand the settlement history of Northern Kythera from remote antiquity to the present. This project seeks to answer these questions: Why was the area of Paliochora not settled until ca.1000 AD? Why was it abandoned following the sack of 1537? Why did it remain abandoned thereafter? 

This project, dedicated to the study of Flavio Biondo, an Italian Renaissance humanist historian and one of the first archaeologists, is led by Frances Muecke of the University of Sydney. The Biondo Research Network aims to provide a comprehensive guide to Biondo and his close associates, offering information on new publications, planned events and conferences.

Since 1995, the University of Sydney has been excavating the ancient Hellenistic-Roman theatre of Nea Paphos in Cyprus. Fieldwork is focused on investigating the urban layout of the surrounding theatre precinct, including revealing paved Roman roads and a Roman nymphaeum (fountain).

Over the past 38 years, the University of Sydney and the Near Eastern Archaeology Foundation have been excavating Pella in Jordan, a site under human occupation since c.8000BCE. Excavations have already unearthed many important discoveries, including Neolithic housing ca. 6000 BCE and Chalcolithic period storage complexes ca. 4200 BCE.

The Australian Archaeological Institute at Athens is continuing excavations of the geometric settlement of Zagora, on the Aegean island of Andros begun by Professor Alexander Cambitoglou in 1967. The Zagora Archaeological Project utilises 21st century methods to add breadth and depth to our knowledge of this unique town.