Friedrich Rakob

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Friedrich Ludwig Rakob (born July 25, 1931 in Ennigloh ; † December 28, 2007 in Münster ) was a German building researcher . His research work at the German Archaeological Institute in Rome focused primarily on the Maghreb ( Tunisia ) and the Villa Hadriana in Tivoli .


After graduating from high school in 1952, Friedrich Rakob studied architecture at the Technical University of Munich from the 1952/1953 winter semester . He also became a guest student in the subjects of archeology, art history, literary studies and logistics at the University of Munich . In 1954 he passed his intermediate diploma and in 1955 went to the Technical University of Karlsruhe , where he became a student assistant at the Institute for Building History.

Rakob's teacher was the building researcher and then head of the Karlsruhe Institute for Building History Arnold Tschira . Tschira initiated Rakob's dissertation on the Piazza d'Oro in the Villa Hadriana in Tivoli, where Rakob carried out architectural studies from 1955. This was followed by further research in the Kerameikos and the Parthenon in Athens , which Rakob undertook together with Tschira and the classical archaeologist Walter-Herwig Schuchhardt .

In 1958, Rakob graduated from the TH Karlsruhe with Otto Ernst Schweizer and in 1961 became Tschira's research assistant for a year at the Institute for Building History at the TH Karlsruhe. Subsequently, in 1962, he became a consultant for Roman building research at the Rome department of the German Archaeological Institute , which would form the basis for his professional life in the future. From 1960 to 1963, together with Tschira, he supervised the architectural history studies at the Casa del Fauno in Pompeii .

In 1963, Armin von Gerkan and Heinrich Drerup recommended Rakob for a travel grant from the German Archaeological Institute . The six-month trip took place in 1963 and 1964 and aimed at archaeological sites in northern Greece, Turkey, Syria, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. Among other things, he traveled a short piece with Hugo Brandenburg and a longer piece through Greece with Paul Zanker .

In 1967 Rakob completed his doctorate with the topic “The Piazza d'Oro in the Villa Hadriana near Tivoli” at the TH Karlsruhe. At the end of the 1970s, he took over the management of the excavations of the German Archaeological Institute in North Africa. Among other things, he investigated the Roman quarries in Chemtou / Simitthus in cooperation with today's Institut National du Patrimoine , in which the yellowish Giallo antico or marble numidicum , which was valued in the imperial era and especially under Hadrian, was mined. Among other things, on the initiative of Rakobs, a museum was set up in Chemtou on this subject.

After various undertakings in Tunisia and Algeria , Rakob's most important research object from 1974 onwards was the archaeological investigation of Carthage : Since the rapid development of the modern city in the early 1970s threatened to destroy the archaeological remains of ancient Carthage, a number of well-known Tunisian archaeologists took shelter Azedine Beschaouch them, publicly for the conservation one. As a result, UNESCO launched a major international campaign between 1972 and 1992 to save ancient Carthage, the climax of which was the inclusion of the archaeological excavation site of Carthage on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1979. As part of this campaign, the German Archaeological Institute in Rome carried out projects in Carthage, the director of which was Rakob. He was mainly responsible for the excavations and the evaluation of Quartier Magon in Carthage, the history of which he researched and published in numerous campaigns. Overall, Rakob devoted more than three decades to his research activities in Tunisia and the Maghreb .

The University of Karlsruhe awarded Rakob an honorary professorship to honor his research achievements in the 1970s . At the same time he received the Federal Cross of Merit, 1st class, as well as the commander's award of the Tunisian Order of Culture for his mediation between the cultures of North Africa and Europe. He was a full member of the German Archaeological Institute.

Rakob retired in 1996 and devoted himself to processing the materials of his scientific work until shortly before his death. He died on December 28, 2007 in Münster , near his birthplace. With a total volume of approx. 110,970 objects, his estate represents an important source of archaeological image data. The estate is collected at the DAI Rome and is currently being digitized and made accessible in the North Africa Archive.

Fonts (selection)

  • Litus beatae veneris aureum: Investigations at the “Temple of Venus” in Baiae . In: Communications from the German Archaeological Institute. Roman department . Volume 68, 1961, pp. 114-149.
  • The Piazza d'Oro in the Villa Hadriana near Tivoli . Dissertation, Technical University of Karlsruhe, 1967.
  • The round temple on the Tiber in Rome . Philipp von Zabern, Mainz 1973.
  • Carthage - Archaeological Park: Magon District . Philipp von Zabern, Mainz 1984.
  • Carthage Volume I-III. Philipp von Zabern, Mainz.
  • Simitthus Volume I-III. Philipp von Zabern, Mainz.
  • The rotunda in Palestrina . In: Communications of the German Archaeological Institute, Roman Department. Volume 97, 1990, pp. 61-92.
  • A Punic sanctuary in Carthage and its successor in Rome: first preliminary report . In: Communications of the German Archaeological Institute, Roman Department. Volume 98, 1991, pp. 33-80.
  • The new find of a Roman turbine mill in Tunisia . In: Ancient World . Volume 24, 1993, pp. 286-287.
  • Carthage - 1500 years of city history . In: Archeology in Germany . Special issue 1995, number 2, pp. 12-17.


  • Adolf Hoffmann : Obituary for Friedrich Rakob . In: Communications of the German Archaeological Institute, Roman Department. Volume 114, 2008, pp. 13-15.
  • Roald F. Docter, Kheir-eddine Hassaine: In memoriam Friedrich Rakob (1931-2007). In Carthage Studies. Volume 3, 2009, pp. 13-20 ( digitized version )

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Hoffmann 2008, p. 13.
  2. Hoffmann 2008, p. 14.
  3. Hoffmann 2008, p. 15.
  4. Hoffmann 2008, p. 15.