Tübingen’s unique role in German academia as a centre for research, teaching, and public outreach in ancient numismatics is highlighted by its Numismatic Department at the Institute of Classical Archaeology. The Numismatic Department was established in 1972, bringing together existing resources and infrastructure in numismatic studies at the University of Tübingen. It was founded as an entity affiliated with the Institute of Classical Archaeology. The institutional connection with the Institute of Classical Archaeology and the collection of coins and medals at the Museum of the University of Tübingen is the most characteristic feature of numismatic study at Tübingen. Thus, teaching and research conducted by the Numismatic Department combines archaeology and numismatics, including the utilization of the collection of ancient and modern coins and medals at the Museum of the University of Tübingen.
Numismatic classes are compulsory components in undergraduate and graduate studies in Classical Archaeology at Tübingen. These classes are also open to students of neighbouring disciplines, such as Prehistory, Classics, Ancient History, Religious Studies, Anthropology, etc. Subject areas in numismatics are available for BA, MA, and PhD supervision.
With over 20,000 objects, the coin collection at the Museum of the University of Tübingen MUT is one of the largest and most important university collections of ancient coins in Germany; it is also one of the oldest as its history spans more than 200 years. The collection’s most prized specimens, in addition to some other c. 800 coins, are on permanent display in the Museum at Hohentübingen Castle to expound the history of coinage from its origins in the seventh century BCE to the present day. Through publications, exhibitions and other educational events, the collection promotes the study of ancient numismatics to diverse audiences.
The library of the Department of Numismatics is part of the excellent research library of the Institute of Classical Archaeology at Hohentübingen Castle. Its holdings include numismatic monographs, edited volumes, journals, and international auction catalogues. Current research projects include a digitizing project of the coin collection and studies of coin finds from archaeological excavations in Baden-Württemberg, Virunum, (Austria), and Carthage. Cutting edge international numismatic research in Tübingen at the Department of Numismatics at the Institute of Classical Archaeology is complemented by research conducted at the Research Unit of Islamic Numismatics at the Department of Oriental and Islamic Studies.