Famous British Archaeologists

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite British Archaeologists

 1 
T. E. Lawrence
(Archaeologist & Army Officer Known for His Legendary War Activities in the Middle East During World War I)

T. E. Lawrence
14
Birthdate: August 16, 1888
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Tremadog, Carnarvonshire, Wales
Died: May 19, 1935
T. E. Lawrence was a British army officer who participated in the Arab Revolt, against the Ottoman regime, during World War I. Nicknamed Lawrence of Arabia, he inspired a movie of the same name. His treatise of his war experiences was published as Seven Pillars of Wisdom, his best-known work.

 2 
Howard Carter
(Archaeologist)

Howard Carter
6
Birthdate: May 9, 1874
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Kensington, London, England
Died: March 2, 1939

George Herbert, 5th Earl of Carnarvon
4
Birthdate: June 26, 1866
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Hampshire, England
Died: April 5, 1923

 4 
Max Mallowan
(Archaeologist)

Max Mallowan
4
Birthdate: May 6, 1904
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Wandsworth, London, England
Died: August 19, 1978

 5 
Mary Leakey
(Paleoanthropologist)

Mary Leakey
4
Birthdate: February 6, 1913
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: December 9, 1996

British paleoanthropologist Mary Leakey had exhibited her interest in drawing and archaeology as a kid. Most of her career was spent working alongside her husband, Louis Leakey. She was in charge of many excavation projects in Kenya. Her discoveries include the first Proconsul skull fossil and 15 new animal species.

 6 
Margaret Murray
(Anthropologist, Archaeologist, Egyptologist)

Margaret Murray
4
Birthdate: July 13, 1863
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Kolkata
Died: November 13, 1963

British Egyptologist and anthropologist Margaret Murray was also a scholar of witchcraft. Her best-known work is her 1921 book The Witch Cult in Western Europe, which inspired later witchcraft scholars such as Gerald B. Gardner. The University College London professor had worked in places such as Egypt, Malta, and Petra.

 7 
Arthur Evans
(Archaeologist)

Arthur Evans
4
Birthdate: July 8, 1851
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Nash Mills, England
Died: July 11, 1941
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 8 
Sir Mortimer Wheeler
(Archaeologist)

Sir Mortimer Wheeler
6
Birthdate: September 10, 1890
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Glasgow, Scotland
Died: July 22, 1976

Sir Mortimer Wheeler was a British archaeologist who served as the director of the London Museum as well as the National Museum of Wales during his illustrious career. He is credited with developing the Wheeler–Kenyon method of archaeological excavation. Wheeler is also remembered for his association with the Archaeological Survey of India where he served as Director-General.

 9 
R. G. Collingwood
(Philosopher)

R. G. Collingwood
3
Birthdate: February 22, 1889
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Cartmel Fell, England
Died: January 9, 1943

 10 
Sir Flinders Petrie
(Egyptologist)

Sir Flinders Petrie
6
Birthdate: June 3, 1853
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: London, England
Died: July 28, 1942

 11 
John Soane
(Architect, Archaeologist)

John Soane
6
Birthdate: September 10, 1753
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Reading
Died: January 20, 1837

English architect John Soane contributed immensely to the Neo-Classical style of architecture. Born to a bricklayer, Soane began training as an architect at 15. He soared to fame during his 45-year stint as an architect of the Bank of England and was also knighted for his achievements.

 12 
E.F. Benson
(Novelist)

E.F. Benson
3
Birthdate: July 24, 1867
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Wellington College, England
Died: February 29, 1940

Chiefly known as a novelist, biographer, and memoirist, Edward Frederic Benson began his career with the British School of Archaeology in Athens, publishing his first successful novel, Dodo: A Detail of the Day, during this period. Its popularity encouraged him to continue publishing, the most significant works among them being Mapp and Lucia series, and the biography of Queen Victoria.

 13 
John Hubert Marshall
(Archaeologist)

John Hubert Marshall
3
Birthdate: March 19, 1876
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Chester, England
Died: August 17, 1958

 14 
Sir Aurel Stein
(Archaeologist)

Sir Aurel Stein
3
Birthdate: November 26, 1862
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Budapest, Hungary
Died: October 26, 1943

Hungarian-British archaeologist Sir Aurel Stein is best remembered for his research in Central Asia. He was also associated with institutes in British India, such as Oriental College, Lahore, and later translated Kalhana’s Rajatarangini from Sanskrit to English. He was a dog lover and remained single for life.

 15 
John Aubrey
(Antiquary)

John Aubrey
3
Birthdate: March 12, 1626
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Kington St Michael, Wiltshire, England
Died: June 7, 1697

 16 
James Bruce
(Explorer, Archaeologist, Film editor, Botanist)

James Bruce
3
Birthdate: December 14, 1730
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Stirling
Died: April 27, 1794

Scottish explorer James Bruce is best known for his treatises of travel and his discovery of the source of the Blue Nile. Initially a wine merchant, he later became a British consul in Algiers and decided to explore North Africa. He traveled to places such as Syria, Ethiopia, and Egypt.

 17 
Irving Finkel
(Philologist, Writer)

Irving Finkel
0
Birthdate: December 14, 1730, 1951
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: London, England

 18 
David Rohl
(Egyptologist, Archaeologist, Engineer, Historian, Audio engineer, Musician)

David Rohl
3
Birthdate: September 12, 1950
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Manchester

 19 
Austen Henry Layard
(Archaeologist)

Austen Henry Layard
3
Birthdate: March 5, 1817
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: July 5, 1894

British archaeologist Austen Henry Layard initially worked in a London law office but quit it suddenly to go on an impromptu trip to Syria. He was later hired as an unofficial British diplomat in Turkey. He is remembered for his excavations in Nineveh and his exploration of the Assyrian and Babylonian culture.

 20 
Augustus Pitt Rivers
(Archaeologist)

Augustus Pitt Rivers
3
Birthdate: April 14, 1827
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bramham cum Oglethorpe, England
Died: May 4, 1900

 21 
Sir Leonard Woolley
(Archaeologist)

Sir Leonard Woolley
5
Birthdate: April 17, 1880
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: London, England
Died: February 20, 1960

 22 
John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury
(Anthropologist, Politician, Archaeologist, Prehistorian, Banker, Statistician, Naturalist, Zoologist, Entomologist)

John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury
3
Birthdate: April 30, 1834
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London
Died: May 28, 1913

British banker John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury, better known as Sir John Lubbock, had also been an MP. However, he is best known for his contribution to ethnography and archaeology. He is also credited with coining the terms Paleolithic and Neolithic, and is known for his books on animal behavior.

Sir Henry Rawlinson, 1st Baronet
3
Birthdate: April 5, 1810
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chadlington, England
Died: March 5, 1895

 24 
Dame Kathleen Kenyon
(Archaeologist)

Dame Kathleen Kenyon
3
Birthdate: January 5, 1906
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: London, England
Died: August 24, 1978

 25 
William Stukeley
(Physician)

William Stukeley
3
Birthdate: November 7, 1687
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Holbeach, England
Died: March 3, 1765

 26 
Meave Leakey
(Paleoanthropologist)

Meave Leakey
3
Birthdate: July 28, 1942
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London, England

British paleoanthropologist Meave Leakey discovered a new branch of the human species, the Kenyanthropus platyops, or the flat-faced man of Kenya. Initially a zoologist in Nairobi, she studied modern monkeys as part of her doctoral research. She is the first Kenyan to be a National Academy of Sciences member.

 27 
Charles Warren
(He was one of the earliest European archaeologists of the Biblical Holy Land)

Charles Warren
0
Birthdate: February 7, 1840
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Bangor, England
Died: January 21, 1927

 28 
Dorothy Garrod
(Archaeologist)

Dorothy Garrod
3
Birthdate: May 5, 1892
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Died: December 18, 1968

 29 
Claire Barratt
(Archaeologist, Mechanical Engineer)

Claire Barratt
0
Birthdate: 1974 AD
Birthplace: England

While she initially studied engineering, Claire Barratt later gained fame as an industrial archaeologist. She has a degree in conservation of industrial heritage. She also has a parallel career as a TV presenter and has been part of shows such as Salvage Squad and Britain's Secret Treasures.

 30 
David George Hogarth
(Archaeologist)

David George Hogarth
2
Birthdate: May 23, 1862
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Lincolnshire, England
Died: November 6, 1927

 31 
Grahame Clark
(Archaeologist)

Grahame Clark
2
Birthdate: July 28, 1907
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bromley, England
Died: September 12, 1995

 32 

Robert Bruce Foote
2
Birthdate: September 22, 1834
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Cheltenham,England
Died: December 29, 1912

 33 
Richard Payne Knight
(Archaeologist)

Richard Payne Knight
0
Birthdate: February 11, 1751
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: England
Died: April 23, 1824

 34 
J. Eric S. Thompson
(Anthropologist)

J. Eric S. Thompson
2
Birthdate: December 31, 1898
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: London, England
Died: September 9, 1975
British anthropologist and ethnographer J. Eric S. Thompson is remembered for his lifelong research on the Mayan people. He had a long stint as an archaeologist at the Carnegie Institution and was also knighted for his achievements. His research culminated in books such as The Rise and Fall of Maya Civilization.

 35 
John Evans
(Archaeologist)

John Evans
2
Birthdate: November 17, 1823
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Burnham, England
Died: May 31, 1908

 36 

Gertrude Caton Thompson
2
Birthdate: February 1, 1888
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: April 18, 1985

 37 
Charles Thomas Newton
(Archaeologist)

Charles Thomas Newton
2
Birthdate: September 16, 1816
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bredwardine, England
Died: November 28, 1894

 38 
Peter Reynolds
(Archaeologist)

Peter Reynolds
2
Birthdate: November 6, 1939
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Shifnal, England
Died: September 26, 2001

 39 
John Garstang
(Archaeologist)

John Garstang
2
Birthdate: May 5, 1876
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Blackburn, England
Died: September 12, 1956

 40 
Humfry Payne
(Archaeologist)

Humfry Payne
1
Birthdate: February 19, 1902
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Wendover, England
Died: May 9, 1936

 41 
John Frere
(Antiquary)

John Frere
1
Birthdate: August 10, 1740
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Roydon Hall, England
Died: July 12, 1807

 42 
Peter Ucko
(Archaeologist)

Peter Ucko
1
Birthdate: July 27, 1938
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London, England
Died: June 14, 2007

 43 
Stewart Perowne
(Diplomat, Archaeologist)

Stewart Perowne
0
Birthdate: June 17, 1901
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Hallowell, Maine, United States
Died: May 10, 1989

 44 

James Theodore Bent
1
Birthdate: March 30, 1852
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Baildon, England
Died: May 5, 1897

 45 
J. Desmond Clark
(Archaeologist)

J. Desmond Clark
1
Birthdate: April 10, 1916
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: London, England
Died: February 14, 2002

 46 
Charles Fellows
(Archaeologist)

Charles Fellows
1
Birthdate: August 31, 1799
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Nottingham, England
Died: November 8, 1860

 47 
Raymond O. Faulkner
(Egyptologist, Philosopher)

Raymond O. Faulkner
0
Birthdate: December 26, 1894
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Shoreham-by-Sea, Sussex, England
Died: March 3, 1982

 48 
Samuel Birch
(Egyptologist)

Samuel Birch
0
Birthdate: November 3, 1813
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: St Mary Woolnoth, London, England, United Kingdom
Died: December 27, 1885

 49 
Claudius Rich
(Businessman)

Claudius Rich
1
Birthdate: March 28, 1787
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Dijon, France
Died: October 5, 1821

 50 
William Pengelly
(Geologist)

William Pengelly
1
Birthdate: January 12, 1812
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Looe, England
Died: March 16, 1894