The German Archaeological Institute (DAI) Cairo photo archive

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The Cairo Department of the German Archaeological Institute (DAI) was founded in 1907. The photographic inventory was confiscated as a result of World War II. After the War, the DAI officially transferred the inventory to the Supreme Council of Antiquities. Since the reopening of the Institute in 1957, a new photo archive has gradually been established. Approximately 250,000 photographs of various types (35mm b/w film, slides, 6x6 medium format, sheet film, glass plates) are presently being managed by the archive. Digital photographs have been included in the archive since 2001.

Inventory and Focus

The photo archive of the Cairo Department focuses on the documentation of the department's excavations in Egypt since the reopening of the Institute in 1957. The archive comprises ca. 240,000 medium format (b/w, colour) photographs, slides and 35mm-b/w-pictures. It also includes photographs which were taken in the museums and magazines in Egypt by request of colleagues (ca. 10,000 images). Furthermore, the department owns ca. 6,000 glass plates and large format photographs from the museums in Cairo as well as photographs from the Keimer-Archive.


The archive in Cairo is primarily devoted to publishing the Institute's own projects and the planned publications within the series of the Cairo department. At the same time, it assists colleagues in researching photographs and illustrating publications. The archive continues to be open to commercial users.

The main tasks include processing photo requests (conducting photo research and making selection of images according to the order), digital photo transfer (high resolution images for printing) as well as clarifying requests about copy and usage rights.

Using the archive

The archive is open to colleagues conducting research and commercial users. Reimbursement of costs and user fees are based on the type of usage. The photographs are only available for a specific use within the general terms and conditions (only in German: PDF) of the DAI; payment of arising costs (e.g. for processing inquiries, making copies, postage and handling and-when necessary-for new photography) is required in full before the order will be processed. A charge for each use will be calculated based on the DAI's rate of fees.

Terms and conditions of the DAI (PDF)


German Archaeological Institute
Cairo Department
31, Abu el Feda
11211 Kairo-Zamalek
Tel.: +20-(0)2-2735-1460
Fax: +20-(0)2-2737-0770
E-Mail (Fotothek):

Available daily from Monday through Friday 9:00 am - 4:30 pm

Last updated: 06-14-2011
The Cairo photo archive on the German Archaeological Institute's website