Eichler, Fritz (Friedrich)

Fritz Eichler

Porträt, Schwarz-Weiß-Foto

12 October 1887 Graz – 16 January 1971 Vienna

Fritz Eichler, who had a doctorate in archaeology from the University of Graz, began his career in 1913 as an unpaid assistant at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. In subsequent years he undertook short study trips to Germany, France, Italy, the Balkan states and Turkey. He was also promoted to become an assistant and auxiliary curator and then curator II and I, in 1933 head of the Collection of Greek and Roman Antiquities and in 1935 its director. He remained in this position throughout the Austrofascist and Nazi regimes until his retirement in 1952. Eichler was not a member of the NSDAP but he was not an opponent of the regime. On the occasion of a promotion, the Vienna Gau headquarters described him in 1941 as "nationalist, antisemitic and anti-clerical". Along with the archaeologist Rudolf Noll, he took part in the compulsory air raid drills in the museum. After Noll's conscription into the Wehrmacht, he was promoted from deputy to chief air raid warden and in this function kept a record from August 1942 to April 1945. With a view to his succession as director of the Collection of Greek and Roman Antiquities, Eichler managed successfully to have Noll reinstated after he had been dismissed on account of his NSDAP membership. In 1951 and 1952, Eichler was also administrative director in the Kunsthistorisches Museum. Apart from his museum career, he lectured at the University of Vienna, was awarded an extraordinary professorship in 1937 and in 1953 became Ordinarius for Classical Archaeology. In 1959 he was granted an honorary year at the university on the occasion of his retirement. In 1962, at the age of seventy-four, he became director of the Österreichisches Archäologisches Institut (Austrian Archaeological Institute) and held this position until 1969. In 1966, he was awarded the Silbernes Ehrenzeichen der Republik Österreich (Silver Medal of Honour of the Republic of Austria) and in 1967 the Goldene Ehrenmedaille der Stadt Wien (Gold Medal of Honour of the City of Vienna).

Author Info
Publications about the person / institution

Felix Czeike, Historisches Lexikon Wien, 2, Wien 1993.

Felix Czeike u. a., Fritz Eichler, in: Wien Geschichte Wiki, URL: www.geschichtewiki.wien.gv.at/Fritz_Eichler (3.12.2020).

Deutsche Biographische Enzyklopädie, hg. v. Walter Killy, 3, 1996.

Rudolf Noll, Fritz Eichler. Nachruf. Sonderabdruck aus dem Almanach der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 121 (1971), Wien 1972.

Publications by the person / institution

Fritz Eichler, Zwei Athletenstatuen (= Meisterwerke in Wien 3), Wien 1922.
Fritz Eichler, Führer durch die Antikensammlung (= Führer durch die kunsthistorischen Sammlungen 2), Wien 1926.
Fritz Eichler, Die Reliefs des Heroon von Gjölbaschi-Trysa (= Kunstdenkmäler 8), Wien 1950.
Fritz Eichler, Die rotfigurigen attischen Trinkgefäße und Pyxiden (= Corpus vasorum antiquorum I), Wien 1951.

Die Kameen im Kunsthistorischen Museum, bearbeitet von Fritz Eichler und Ernst Kris, Wien 1927.

Fritz Eichler, Alfred Bernhard-Walcher, Rotfigurige attische Vorratsgefäße (= Corpus vasorum antiquorum II), Wien 1959.


KHM-Achiv, IV 29, NL Fritz Eichler;  III 2291, Selbst-Biografie; 223/KL/1941 (Ernennung zum Direktor); 76/ED/1943 (Einweisung); 9/ED/1944 (UK-Stellung); 9/ED/1945 (UK-Stellung)
KHM-Archiv, III 1212, PA Rudolf Noll.

OeStA/AdR, UWK, BMU, Personalakten, K. 03/30, Fritz Eichler.
OeStA/AdR, UWK, BMU, Personalakten, K. 12/10, Fritz Eichler.
OeStA/AdR, ZNsZ, Gauakt 233.409, Fritz Eichler.

WStLA, Historische Wiener Meldeunterlagen, Meldeauskunft Fritz Eichler.