Short Portrait: Roswith Hartmann

Roswith Hartmann
Roswith Hartmann

Roswith Hartmann was born in Seligenstadt/Main. She spent her childhood and youth in Southern Hesse. After finishing secondary school Hartmann studied Spanish and English at the Institute for Translation Studies at the Ruprechts-Karl-University in Heidelberg between 1952 and 1956.

From 1957 onward Hartmann studied Anthropology, Early and Prehistory, Economics and Spanish Studies at the Bonn University. At the Institute for Ancient American Studies and Ethnology, its founder Hermann Trimborn was among her teachers. Hartmann furthermore participated in an archaeological research project chaired by Udo Oberem in 1964/65. During this period she did field work on the Quechua language as well as on Material Culture of indigenous groups in Ecuador.

Hartmann graduated with a Ph D thesis on market places in Ancient Peru in 1967/68. Thereafter she took up an assistant position at the institute in Bonn and continued her field work and researches at the project on Ecuador.

In 1972 Hartmann was appointed Academic Council at the Bonn University. During the following decades she not only did regular field work (i.e., 1973/74) in Ecuador but intensified her researches on linguistic and ethnohistorical matters concerning this region. Moreover, Hartmann began lecturing at the Institute for Ancient American Studies and Ethnology in Bonn. She also chaired the Collection of the very institute.

Hartmann retired in 1996 but kept researching and lecturing. Her scientific work can be regarded as a major contribution to the Bonn-School of Ancient American Studies.

Roswith Hartmann died in 2001.

(Text written by Vincenz Kokot in July 2012, based on an obituary by Masson, Peter, 2002;; photo by courtesy of Bertold Riese)