Oliver Humphrys Myers

Dates: 
1903 - 1966

British archaeologist; he was born in Shoeburyness, 27 June 1903, son of Alfred Edward Cecil M., Lt-Colonel in the Artillery, and Bertha Maud Cory; he was educated at Wellington College, Berks., afterwards being engaged in literary and theatrical work in Cambridge; in 1927 Terence Gray (q.v.) introduced him to Brunton (q.v.) then excavating at Mostagedda; as a result he went to work with Petrie (q.v.) at Tell Fara in Palestine thereby starting his career in archaeology; he did not begin his work in Egypt until 1929, in which year he began to study hieroglyphs under Gardiner (q.v.); in 1930 began the highly successful association with Mond (q.v.) at Armant for which he is best remembered; he was made Director of the excavation in 1936, the seasons being conducted until 1938; during the Second World War Myers served in the Intelligence Corps, 1941-6, in Egypt, Libya, Palestine, Syria, Lebanon and Aden, and as official coordinator of Intelligence under Field Marshal Wilson and General Collet; he married 1. Mary Irene Cathcart Borer, and following his divorce, 2. 1940 (Mary) Julia Theodora de la Motte; he renewed his association with the Nile Valley in 1946, teaching at Gordon College, Khartoum, and excavated at Abka near Wadi Halfa; he was visiting Professor at the Institute of Ancient Sudanese Studies, Zamalek, 1950, and worked in various countries in the Near East after 1953, afterwards being appointed Senior Lecturer in the University of Ibadan in Ife, Nigeria; he never received the recognition which was his due in England after much careful and thorough work in archaeology; he published, The Bucheum, 3 vols. 1934; The Cemeteries of Armant I, 2 vols., in which no fewer than 40 specialists were involved, 1937; The Temples of Armant. A preliminary survey, 2 vols. 1946; all with Sir Robert Mond; Some Applications of Statistics to Archaeology, 1951; his bibl. also lists 33 articles in JEA and various Egyptological journals, 20 more on different subjects, and four archaeological reviews; in addition he left three works in MS., Notes on Water Supply and Rainfall, Cemeteries of Armant II, and Neolithic Nubians, he died in Berkhamsted, 26 Nov. 1966.