Swansea University - stray_christopher

Dr. Christopher Stray; Honorary Research Fellow

Specialist Subjects: History of classical scholarship and teaching, including pedagogy and publishing

Dr Christopher Stray’s research interests are in the history and sociology of classical education and scholarship, universities and examinations, institutional slang and the interdisciplinary study of textbooks. He has been an Honorary Research Fellow in the  department since 1989.
His PhD thesis was published by Oxford University Press in 1998: Classics transformed: schools, universities and society in England, 1830–1960. It was awarded a Runciman prize in 1999.

Dr Stray co-founded the Textbook Colloquium in 1988 and acted as its convener until its closure in 2009. He is a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Classical Studies, University of London, and a Life Member of the Hellenic Society. He acts as a consultant to OUP and CUP on the digitising of classical titles.

Current research

Dr Stray’s current projects include an edition of the correspondence of Sir Richard Jebb, a book on the Cambridge Classical Tripos c. 1820–1920, a study of the Wooden Spoon c. 1753–1909 and a history of the Institute of Classical Studies.


Principal publications


Remaking the Classics, ed. (Duckworth, 2007)

Oxford Classics: Teaching and Learning 1800–2000, ed. and contrib. (Duckworth, 2007)

Classical Books: Scholarship and Publishing in Britain since 1800, ed. and contrib. (BICS, 2007)

Gilbert Murray Reassessed, ed. (OUP, 2007)

A.E. Housman the Scholar, ed. with D. Butterfield, and contrib. (Duckworth, 2009)

Book chapters and journal articles

[with Robert Ackerman]  ‘An unknown contemporary review of K.O. Müller’s History and Antiquities of the Doric Race’, Illinois Classical Studies 50 (2006), 181–218.

‘The rise and fall of Porsoniasm’, Cambridge Classical Journal 53 (2007), 40–71.

‘Politics, culture, and scholarship: Classics in the Quarterly Review,’ in J. Cutmore (ed.) Conservatism and the Quarterly Review (Pickering and Chatto, 2007), 87–106, 233–238.

[with Gillian Sutherland] ‘Educational publishing’ in D.J. McKitterick (ed.), Cambridge history of the book in England; volume 4: 1830–1914 (CUP, 2008), 359–381.


‘Patriots and professors: The Roman Society 1910–2010’, Journal of the Roman Society 100 and Britannia 31 (2010).

‘The absent academy: The organisation of classical scholarship in nineteenth-century England’, Hyperboreus 17 (2010).

Chapters on ‘Classics’ and on ‘Education’, History of Oxford University Press (ed. S. Eliot) vol. 2 (2012); on Classics, vol.3 (2012)

Classics in Britain 1800–2000: Studies in teaching, learning and publishing (OUP, 2012)


Recent conference papers and invited lectures


Co-organiser and speaker, Panel on "Women in Classics", American Philological Association annual conference, Philadelphia, January

Invited lecture on Sir Richard Jebb and the founding of the British School at Athens; BSA, March

Invited lecture on the Wooden Spoon, St John's College, Cambridge, June (in connection with an exhibition which I curated)

Invited paper, conference on "Classics and the academy in Europe", Bibliotheca Classica Petropolitana, St Petersburg: "The absent academy in 19th-century Britain" September.

Organiser of conference and speaker, "Scholarship as reception", Institute of Classical Studies, London, November: "Nineteenth-century British classical journals".

Invited lecture on J P Postgate, University of Liverpool, November: "Postgate Unrolled: new light on a classical life"


Principal research awards, fellowships, & prizes

Runciman prize, 1999

Senior Research Fellow, University of London Institute of Classical Studies (2009)

Jackson Brothers fellowship, Beinecke Library, Yale University (2005)

General Information

College of Arts and Humanities: History & Classics
TEL: +44 (0) 1792 205678 ext: 5187
FAX: +44 (0) 1792 295739
E-MAIL: c.a.stray@swansea.ac.uk

Courses Taught