For Immediate Release

Lecture: Monseñor Federico Lunardi (1880–1954): The Italian Diplomat-Archaeologist and Mayan National Identity in Honduras

(September 9, 2009) How did a Vatican diplomat with training in archaeology influence contemporary national identity in Honduras?

The Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology presents “Monseñor Federico Lunardi (1880–1954): The Italian Diplomat-Archaeologist and Mayan National Identity in Honduras,” a lecture by Dario A. Euraque, Ph.D. on Thursday, October 8, 2009 at 5:30 PM in the Sherman Fairchild Auditorium, 7 Divinity Ave., Cambridge, Massachusetts.

This illustrated lecture explores the life of Monseñor Federico Lunardi, a pioneer of what Italian academics call “Americanist studies.” Between 1916 and 1954, Lunardi served as a Vatican diplomat in many countries in Latin America and as Papal Nuncio in Honduras between 1939 and 1948. During his training as a priest in Rome, he studied history, literature, paleography, and Christian and Roman archaeology. With in-depth study of the archaeology and ethnography of Honduras during his years there, Lunardi focused on formulating theories about the descendents of the ancient Maya in Honduras as the main protagonist of indigenous peoples there. Lunardi´s publications and intellectual ties in Honduras became one source for the predominant role that the ancient Maya occupy in contemporary Honduran national identity, in official and unofficial versions.

About Dario Euraque

Dr. Euraque has written extensively about 19th- and 20th-century Honduran history. Much of the material remains of the ancient peoples whom Lunardi studied, from countries as diverse as Honduras, Colombia, Chile, and Brazil, are today housed in museums, archives, and libraries in Genoa, Italy. Dr. Dario A. Euraque has researched these collections as a scholar and as the Director of the Honduran Institute of Anthropology and History. He is currently Professor of History and International Studies at Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut.

About the Peabody Museum
The Peabody Museum is among the oldest archaeological and ethnographic museums in the world with one of the finest collections of human cultural history found anywhere. It is home to superb materials from Africa, ancient Europe, North America, Mesoamerica, Oceania, and South America in particular. In addition to its archaeological and ethnographic holdings, the Museum’s photographic archives, one of the largest of its kind, hold more than 500,000 historical photographs, dating from the mid-nineteenth century to the present and chronicling anthropology, archaeology, and world culture.

Hours and location: 9 A.M. to 5 P.M., seven days a week. The Museum is closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. Admission is $9 for adults, $7 for students and seniors, $6 for children, 3–18. Free with Harvard ID or Museum membership. The Museum is free to Massachusetts residents Sundays, 9 A.M. to noon, year round, and Wednesdays from 3 P.M. to 5 P.M. (September to May). Admission includes admission to the Harvard Museum of Natural History. For more information call 617-496-1027 or go online to: The Peabody Museum is located at 11 Divinity Avenue in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Museum is a short walk from the Harvard Square MBTA station.

Now on Facebook facebook link, Flickr flickr link, and Twitter twitter link

Media Contact:

Faith Sutter
Communications Coordinator
Peabody Museum
Tel: 617-495-3397



Federico Lunardi.
Where: Sherman Fairchild Auditorium, 7 Divinity Ave.
When: Thursday, October 9, 2009 at 5:30 pm
Contact: 617-496-1027 or
Lecture by: Dario Euraque, Ph.D.