From Lexicography to the Irrational: Liddell and Scott and E.R. Dodds

Thursday, December 5, 2019 - 17:30
Contact person
Dr Cristina Neagu
01865 276265

A new exhibition will open in the Upper Library at Christ Church on 5 December 2019, at 5:30 pm. The event will be launching two books published by Oxford University Press: Liddell & Scott, edited by Christopher Stray, Michael Clarke and Joshua T. Katz; and Rediscovering E. R. Dodds, edited by Christopher Stray, Christopher Pelling and Stephen Harrison.

In the nineteenth century the study of Greek, embedded in elite culture and schooling, was exemplified in the Greek-English lexicon of Henry Liddell and Robert Scott, first published in 1843. Liddell, who refused the Regius chair of Greek at Oxford in 1855, was Dean of Christ Church from 1854 till 1891. At his death in 1898, eight editions of the lexicon had been published; the 9th edition, published 1925-40, remains the world’s standard Greek lexicon, and Gilbert Murray (Regius professor 1908-36) viewed the 9th edition ‘with mingled awe, delight and longing’. Murray also, though, declared that it was more important to study Greece than Greek, and his successor in the chair, E.R.Dodds (Regius professor 1936-60) did both, producing not only editions of a Euripides play and a Platonic dialogue, but also The Greeks and the Irrational (1951), one of the outstanding books on Classics of the twentieth century.  

All are welcome. The event, followed by a drinks reception, is free of charge. To book a place, please contact the Keeper of Special Collections at Christ Church.

The exhibition will be open in the Upper Library from 5 December 2019.
Visiting hours:
Monday - Friday: 10.00 am - 1.00 pm;  2.00 pm - 4.30 pm