DELOUGAZ, PINHAS PIERRE (b. Ukraine, 16 July 1901, d. Čoḡā Mīš, Persia, 29 March 1975), archeologist and excavator of the ancient site of Čoḡā Mīš (q.v.) in Persia. The son of Simon and Zipporah Silverman, he was raised in a rural setting and received his earliest education in Russian and Hebrew literature and thought from tutors at home. In 1913 he was sent to the Gymnasium Herzlia in Tel Aviv, where he remained throughout World War I. The Bolshevik Revolution in 1917 cut off the flow of funds from home, and he was thus forced to become self-reliant at an early age. At school he had concentrated on mathematics and science, while acquiring a knowledge of Arabic and a familiarity with Near Eastern life from Arab friends. From 1922 to 1926 he studied mathematics and physics at the Sorbonne in Paris, where he developed an interest in architecture, art, and eventually archeology.
Delougaz began his career in field archeology as assistant architect with the Harvard University-Baghdad School expedition to Nuzi in northern Iraq in 1928-29. From 1929 to 1931 he was with Edmund Chiera at the excavation at Khorsabad in Iraq, beginning his long association with the Oriental Institute of The University of Chicago. Beginning in 1931 he directed the Oriental Institute excavation at Ḵafāja in the Dīāla valley of central Iraq, and after the final season in 1938 he moved to the United States. He became a member of the faculty of The University of Chicago in 1949 and served as professor of archeology from 1960 to 1967. In the 1950s and 1960s he conducted excavations at Beth Yerah (Ḵerbat al-Kerak) in Israel and a survey expedition in Turkey and western Persia. In 1961 he began excavating at Čoḡā Mīš, a large prehistoric and protohistoric site in north-central Ḵūzestān, to which he devoted the remainder of his archeological career. He moved to the University of California at Los Angeles (U.C.L.A.) as professor of Near Eastern archeology in 1967, and the excavation at Čoḡā Mīš was sponsored jointly for several seasons by that university and the Oriental Institute. In 1970 he also assumed the directorship of the Museum of Cultural History at U.C.L.A. He died of a heart attack while working in the field.
Delougaz was known for his ability to interpret sites and the finds from them and for his methodological rigor, particularly a new type of pottery classification. He was also able to convey the technical aspects of field work to students with clarity. He was particularly gifted at identifying the functions of artifacts the use of which was not obvious to modern eyes.
His many publications include Plano-Convex Bricks and the Method of Their Employment and the Treatment of Clay Tablets in the Field (Chicago, 1933); The Temple Oval of Khafajah, (Oriental Institute Publication 53, Chicago, 1940); Pre-Sargonid Temples in the Diyala Region (with Seton Lloyd; Chicago, 1942); Pottery from the Diyala Region (Oriental Institute Publication 63, Chicago, 1952); “Chogha Mish Excavation Report” (with Helene Kantor; Iran 13, 1975, pp. 176-77); “The 1973-74 Excavation at Chogha Mish” (with Kantor; IIIrd Annual Symposium on Archaeological Research in Iran, Tehran, 1975, pp. 93-102); “Some New Evidence Pertaining to Sites in Southwestern Iran and Southern Mesopotamia in the Protoliterate Period” (in The Memorial Volume of the Vth International Congress of Iranian Art and Archaeology, Tehran, 1972, pp. 26-33); “The Prehistoric Architecture at Chogha Mish"( in The Memorial Volume of the VIth International Congress of Iranian Art and Archaeology, Tehran, 1976, pp. 31-48); and Chogha Mish I. The First Five Seasons, 1961-1971 (with Kantor; Oriental Institute Publications 101, Chicago, 1991).
Bibliography: Who’s Who in America, 38th ed., VII, Chicago, 1974-75, p. 771.
(Ezat O. Negahban)
Originally Published: December 15, 1994
Last Updated: December 15, 1994