- Demetrios Pierides
- Also known as
primary name: Pierides, Demetrios
- individual; banker/financier; academic/intellectual; Cypriot; Male
- Other dates
- 1810/1811-1895 (active)
- Cypriot banker, businessman and antiquarian who donated or sold groups of antiquties to the British Museum in the 1850s and 1860s. Educated in London, he worked for the British consulate in Larnaka from the 1840s to the 1860s (first as Chancelier and then as Dragoman) and later for the Imperial Ottoman Bank after the establishment of a branch on the island in 1863.
Pierides donated a group of stone sculptures from Dali in 1855 through the intervention of Charles Newton (then still a British vice-consul in the Aegean) and later sold several groups of stone and terracotta figures and clay vases in the later 1860s. Some of the terracotta figurines came from excavations he undertook along with D.E. Colnaghi at the sanctuary of 'Artemis Paralia' near the Salt Lake in 1865, though other material came from Dali or other sites.
He is regarded as the first Cypriot-born epigraphist and guided numerous foreign excavators working on the island to archaeological sites. He helped to found the Cyprus Museum in 1882. He is presumably the same individual who offered a collection of antiquities for a new museum at Larnaka which was being developed in 1881 by Claude Delaval Cobham (q.v.), the British Distrtict Commissioner of the area.
- Bonato, L. 2000, 'Chypre dans les archives de Melchior de Vogüé IV. La correspondance de Dimitri Piérides'. CCEC 30, 100-118.
Koudounaris A. 1985, 'A historical outline of the Pierides family', in V. Karageorghis, Ancient Cypriote in the Pierides Foundation Museum (Larnaca: Pierides Foundation), 18-19.
Kiely, T. and Merrillees, R. 2020, 'A unique Late Cypriote Bronze Age jar from Demetrios Pierides’ excavations in Cyprus, formerly in the Joseph Altounian Collection, Mâcon, France, and the circulation of Cypriote antiquities in the 19th century AD'. Cahiers du Centre d’Études Chypriotes 50, 459-482.
Koudounaris A. 2010, Βιογραφικον Λεξικον Κυπρίων 1800-1920 (Δ' εκδοσιν) (Λευκωσία), 491-2.
Correspondence with Charles Newton during the 1860s is preserved in GR archives Original Letters 1861-68, L-Z (with letters written to P. copied in the Letter Book 1861-1879). References to his activities can also be found in the letters of others (especially those of the British Consul Dominic Ellis Colnaghi (q.v.) (Original Letters 1861-68, A-K), the British banker Robert Hamilton Lang (q.v.) (Original Letters 1861-68, L-Z; Original Letters 1869-72, L-Z), and the British Vice-Consul Thomas Sandwith (Original Letters 1861-68, L-Z; Original Letters 1869-72, L-Z) (see Kiely and Merrillees 2020). His correspondence with Melchior de Vogüé is also crucial in undertanding his relaitonship with foreign collectors and antiquarians at this time (see Bonato 2000).