JOYCE, Thomas Athol

JOYCE, Thomas Athol. London 4.8.1878 — Wroxham, Norfolk 3.1.1942. British Anthropologist. Son of a newspaper editor. Educated at Dulwich College. Studies at Oxford (Hertford College, M.A. 1902), then worked in British Museum. In WW I in intelligence service in War Office. In 1927 field expedition to Mayan sites in British Honduras (Belize), then conducted excavations there until 1931. Deputy Keeper 1921, from 1932 in charge of the sub-department of ehtnography. Retired 1938. O.B.E. 1918. Married Lilian Dayrell, divorce 1925.

Among his interests Central Asia was a side-issue. He claimed that ancient Meso-American cultures were superior to those of Egypt and Mesopotamia. In the Encyclop. Britannica article on “Negro” (1911) he claimed that they were “mentally … inferior to the white”.

Publications: Mostly wrote on Africa and Central America.

– “Notes on the Physical Anthropology of Chinese Turkestan and the Pamirs”, JRAnthrInst 42, 1912, 450-484; “Note on the Physical Anthropology of the Pamirs and Amu-Daria Basin”, JRAnthrInst 56, 1926, 105-133.

– “Note on a Gilt Bronze Figure of Padmapani in the British Museum”, Man 22, 1922, 33, 1 pl. (brought by Younghusband expedition).

Sources: *R.J. Howgego, Oxford D.N.B.; *J.E.S. Thompson, Boletín Bibliográfico de Antropología Americana 13, 1950, 252-258; Nature 142, 1938, 146 in; Wikipedia.

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