Fostering scholarship and research that leads to an interdisciplinary and cross-cultural understanding and appreciation of civilizations in the ancient world.

Featured Grant:  The New Vani Archaeological Museum 

Institute for the Study of the Ancient World

The Institute for the Study of the Ancient World at New York University aims to encourage the study of the economic, religious, political and cultural connections between ancient civilizations. ISAW offers doctoral and postdoctoral programs, exhibitions, and other public programs.

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The Lod Mosaic

The Foundation supported the excavation and conservation of this extraordinary archaeological find, dated to A.D. 300, discovered in Lod, Israel in 1996. It will be housed on its original site in The Shelby White and Leon Levy Lod Mosaic Center.

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Vani Archaeological Museum

The Leon Levy Foundation provided support for the renovation of the new Vani Archaeological Museum, part of the Georgian National Museum. Built as the first archaeological museum in Georgia, the new venue has been equipped with modern amenities and will operate as a significant cultural and educational hub that will house exhibitions and host scientific conferences and educational events.

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Harvard University

White Levy Program for Archaeological Publications

The White Levy Program supports research on terminated, unpublished archaeological field work from significant sites in the Aegean, Anatolia, Balkans, Egypt, Iranian Plateau, Levant, Mesopotamia, Nubia, and Sudan. Since its inception in 1997, over $13 million in grants have been awarded.

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National Campus for the Archaeology of Israel

Opened in 2016 and designed by Moshe Safdie, the National Campus, including the Leon Levy and Shelby White Center for State Treasures, brings together nearly two million archaeological objects that collectively represent the cultural heritage of Israel.

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From 1985-2016, Leon Levy and then the Foundation financed the excavation of the ancient seaport of Ashkelon, which brought to light hundreds of artifacts. The work of the project is being collected in ten final report volumes published by the Harvard Semitic Museum.

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Digital Archaeology: Ur

With lead support from the Foundation, Ur-Online reunites, in a pioneering open-access digital research tool, the artifacts excavated between 1922 and 1934 at the ancient Mesopotamian city of Ur, and well as the dig records and field notes of archaeologist Sir Leonard Woolley. The site’s objects—many made of gold, lapis lazuli, carnelian or silver—were split among the Penn Museum, the British Museum and Iraq. Ur-Online brings together those in Philadelphia and London, with hopes of eventually adding those in Iraq.

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Conservation Center of the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU

Since 2008, the Foundation has helped to educate conservators of ancient artifacts through the Leon Levy Fellowship Program in Archaeological Conservation and, more recently, by creating a visiting fellowship for foreign conservators whose countries lacks an advanced program in the preservation of cultural heritage. Fellows have come from Cambodia, Malawi, Egypt, China and Iraq to learn current conservation science and techniques in graduate-level courses.

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Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

In partnership with the Freer-Sackler, the Foundation created an “Intercultural Relations of the Ancient World” program, which underwrites exhibitions, supports research and conservation in Ancient Near East art. The grants also supported the cataloguing and digitization of the records of two excavation campaigns of Samarra in Iraq and helped support the creation of an online catalogue of the museum’s ancient Chinese jade collection.

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