Sir Grahame Douglas Clark (Biographical details)

Sir Grahame Douglas Clark (archaeologist; academic/intellectual; British; Male; 1907 - 1995)

Also known as

Clark, Grahame Douglas; Clark, John Grahame Douglas


British archaeologist and prehistorian, known as Grahame althouth his first name was John and often referred to as J.G.D. Clark. Appointed Disney Professor of Archaeology at Cambridge in 1952, Master of Peterhouse, Cambridge (1973-1980). He was a fellow of the Britsh Academy, served as a Trustee of the British Museum, was appointed CBE in 1971 and knighted in 1992. In 1935 he was largely responsible for the transforming the Prehistoric Society of East Anglia into the national Prehistoric Society.
Clark's early archaeological work focussed on the Mesolithic of Britain and his excavation at Star Carr (1949-51) proved a milestone in the development of that subject, as well as in the use of palaeoenvironmetal evidence. He combined such evidence with archaeological, ethnographic and ethnohistorical data in his book 'Prehistoric Europe: the economic basis' (1952). This book had a huge influence on the development of archaeology in middle years of the twentieth century. Clarks's interests also covered the origins of agriculture and empires around the world and he was one of few scholars to attempt writing a synthesis of World Prehistory. Although rarely seen in the public arena he influenced archaeology worldwide through his publications and his students.


Brian Fagan, 'Grahame Clarke: An Intellectual Biography of an Archaeologist', Westview 2001.