The British School supports research into all aspects of the Greek language from Linear B to text messaging. Our interests in this area of research date back to the very early years of the School, when archaeology and linguistics often went hand in hand. R.M. Dawkins (Director 1906-1913) combined archaeological fieldwork at Sparta, Palaikastro and Phylakopi with research into the Greek language (notably in Cappadocia), and went on to hold the Bywater and Sotheby Chair of Medieval and Modern Greek at Oxford. He became a fervent champion of the work of poets such as Cavafy, whom he had encountered while in Greece.
Nowadays our major research projects centre on epigraphy, and on the historical context of the work of Greek and British Philhellene writers. They include:
• The Greek fragments of Diocletian's edict on maximum prices: Imperial communication and local response. A study of the surviving fragments from the province of Achaea, with emphasis on the local historical context and the role of the physical inscription (its location and setting) in disseminating an Imperial edict to very variable local audiences. For further information, contact the Assistant Director.
• The Unity of Greek Law. Emphasizing the role of documents, a reappraisal of the importance of shared legal concepts and forms of contract, the role of mobility across the Greek world (including that of specialists such as judges) and the creation of new law codes in the Hellenistic period. A conference is planned for Spring 2011. Contact the Assistant Director.
• Byron’s War: the Greek revolution and the English romantic imagination. A new study of Byron’s writings about Greece and his role in the armed struggle, set in the context of recent scholarship on the cultural, historical and ideological background to the Greek revolution. Prof. R. Beaton (King's College London). Futher information available to download below.