Kathleen Freeman (classicist)

Summary

Kathleen Freeman (22 June 1897 – 21 February 1959) was a British classical scholar and author of detective novels. Her detective fiction was published under the pseudonym Mary Fitt. Freeman was a lecturer in Greek at the University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire, Cardiff, between 1919 and 1946.[1]

Kathleen Freeman
Kathleen Freeman (classicist).jpg
Kathleen Freeman
Born22 June 1897
Died21 February 1959(1959-02-21) (aged 61)
St Mellons, Wales
Academic background
Alma materCardiff University (as University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire)
Academic work
DisciplineAncient Greek philosophy
InstitutionsCardiff University (as University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire), Philosophical Society of England

Early life and educationEdit

Kathleen Freeman was born in Yardley, Birmingham, and was the daughter of a commercial traveller, Charles H. Freeman, and Catharine Freeman, née Mawdesley. By the 1911 census, the family had moved to an eight-room house at 86 Conway Road, Cardiff.[2]:315 [3] Freeman's mother died in 1919, and her father died in 1932.[2]:315 Freeman attended Canton High School on Market Road in Cardiff, which opened in 1907. Boys and girls were both educated in the school but separately in different subjects: Canton High School offered Latin but not to girls, and Freeman's schooling did not include Greek or Latin.[2]

In a field dominated by men, she was an unlikely candidate to become a classicist of note.[2]:315 No details have been found about when or with whom she started to learn ancient Greek.[2]:316 Freeman knew Latin, French, German, Italian, and ancient and modern Greek. Except for French, which was taught at Canton High School, it remains unclear how she learnt these languages.[2]:316

Freeman won a scholarship to study at the University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire, Cardiff, which began to accept male and female students in 1893.[2]:317 [4] She began her degree in 1915 and studied with Professor Gilbert Norwood.[3]

Academic careerEdit

Following her graduation in 1918 when she was awarded a BA, Freeman remained at University College and was appointed Lecturer in Greek in 1919. She went on to earn an MA in 1922 and a DLitt in 1940.[5] A 1922 picture of the faculty at University College shows 41 men and 10 women. Only one of these women, Ida Beata Saxby, had a doctorate (University of London, 1918).[2]:318[6]

Freeman is best known for her works The Pre-Socratic Philosophers: A Companion to Diels, Fragmente Der Vorsokratiker (1946), and Ancilla to the Pre-Socratic Philosophers (1947/48), a translation of and handbook to the fragments of Pre-Socratic philosophers collected by Diels.[7][4]

 
Girls' entrance, Canton High School, Market Road, Cardiff

From early in her career, Freeman worked to bring Greek texts to the general public through her work in translating texts and presenting her ideas to general audiences.[2]:333 Freeman featured on BBC radio in 1926 presenting a series on 'Writers of Greece', including Greek authors such as Aristophanes, Thucydides and Empedocles.[8][9][10]

During the Second World War Freeman delivered lectures on Greece for the Ministry of Information and in the National Scheme of Education for HM Forces in South Wales and Monmouthshire.[11][2]:323 She further contributed to the war effort with her selections of translations from Greek authors which featured in The Western Mail, a Cardiff-based newspaper. These were later published as the book, It Has All Happened Before: What the Greeks Thought of their Nazis (1941).[12] Her publications Voices of Freedom (1943), What They Said at the Time: A Survey of the Causes of the Second World War (1945) and her work with the Philosophical Society of England, where she acted as Supervisor of Studies from 1948 to 1952 before becoming the Chairman in 1952, are further testimony to her desire to make Greek ideas accessible through translation. Freeman resigned from the university in 1946 in order to pursue her research and writing.[13]

Fiction-writing careerEdit

Freeman enjoyed success as a writer of fiction and wrote under the pseudonyms Mary Fitt (1936–60), Stuart Mary Wick (1948; 1950), Clare St. Donat (1950) and Caroline Cory (1956).[14][15][16]

In 1926, in addition to her study The Work and Life of Solon, Freeman published a collection of short stories The Intruder and Other Stories, and her first novel Martin Hanner. A Comedy.[17] In 1936 she began publishing crime fiction under the pseudonym Mary Fitt, writing 27 books and a number of short stories. In 1950 she became a member of the Detection Club.[18] Her books were critically acclaimed at the time, although since her death many have been out of print.[19][20] She also wrote twelve children's stories and T'other Miss Austen (1956), a study of Jane Austen.

In recent years Freeman's work has been re-assessed, especially in the light of Welsh women and modernism.[21] [Acknowledgements] Her short stories have also been described as antecedents of the Kate North's queer stories, and, as of 2019, republication of some of her short stories was planned. [22] [p. 442]

Personal lifeEdit

 
Formerly Canton High School, now Chapter Arts Centre, Market Road, Cardiff

From some time in the 1930s until her death, she lived with her girlfriend, Dr. Liliane Marie Catherine Clopet (1901–1987), a GP and author, at Lark's Rise, a house on Druidstone Road in St Mellons, now a district of Cardiff.[23][1]

Freeman dedicated all her novels (written as Freeman, rather than Fitt) to Clopet from This Love (1929) onwards. The presentation copy of The Work and Life of Solon has survived, which Freeman dedicated to Clopet, dated to 14 July 1926.[24] Freeman's inscription includes a slight misspelling of Clopet's name, which has been thought by antiquarian bookseller Peter Harrington,[25] to indicate that Freeman and Clopet were in the early stages of their relationship.[24] Freeman died in 1959 in St. Mellons at the age of 61. Clopet considerably outlived Freeman, dying in 1987 in Newport.[23]

BibliographyEdit

Academic publicationsEdit

  • 1926: The Work and Life of Solon, with a translation of his poems, Cardiff: University of Wales Press Board. OCLC 756460254[26]
  • 1941: It Has All Happened Before: What the Greeks Thought of their Nazis, London: F. Muller Ltd. OCLC 5290960
  • 1943: Voices of Freedom, London: F. Muller Ltd. OCLC 912104035
  • 1945: What They Said at the Time: A Survey of the Causes of the Second World War, London: F. Muller Ltd. OCLC 921002880
  • 1946: The Pre-Socratic Philosophers; a companion to Diels, Fragmente der Vorsokratiker, Oxford: Blackwell.[27] OCLC 54961908
  • 1946: The Murder of Herodes and Other Trials from the Athenian law courts, London, MacDonald. OCLC 607833964
  • 1947: The Greek way: an Anthology. Translations from verse and prose, London, MacDonald. OCLC 577963906
  • 1947/48: Ancilla to the pre-Socratic philosophers: a complete translation of the fragments in Diels, Fragmente der Vorsokratiker, Oxford and Cambridge, Mass., Blackwell and Harvard University Press.[28][29] OCLC 706866300
  • 1948: The Philoctetes of Sophocles, a modern version, London: Muller. OCLC 10111365
  • 1950: Greek city-states, London, Macdonald; New York: W. W. Norton. OCLC 654595269
  • 1952: God, Man and State. Greek concepts, London: Macdonald.[30] OCLC 307525
  • 1954: The Paths of Justice, London: Lutterworth Press. OCLC 602389093
  • 1954: Everyday things in Ancient Greece, London, Batsford. A one-volume revision of Everyday Things in Homeric Greece, Everyday Things in Archaic Greece, and Everyday Things in Classical Greece by C. H. Quennell and Marjorie Quennell. 1929–32. OCLC 401803
  • 1954: The Sophists. Translation of Mario Untersteiner, I sofisti, Oxford: Blackwell. OCLC 504343285

Selected fictional publicationsEdit

  • 1926: The Intruder and Other Stories, London: Jonathan Cape. OCLC 560414633
  • 1926: Martin Hanner. A Comedy, New York: Harcourt, Brace and Co. OCLC 560414667
  • 1937: The Three Hunting Horns, London: Nicholson & Watson. OCLC 752858530
  • 1938: Expected Death, London: Nicholson & Watson. OCLC 8717293
  • 1941: Death on Herons' Mere, London: Michael Joseph. OCLC 560844590
  • 1941: Aftermath of Murder, New York: Doubleday. OCLC 13960788
  • 1946: Death and the Pleasant Voices, London: Michael Joseph. OCLC 25115981
  • 1948: And Where's Mr Bellamy?, London: Hutchinson. OCLC 16298203
  • 1941: Death and Mary Dazill, London: Michael Joseph. OCLC 11233504
  • 1950: Pity for Pamela, London: Macdonald & Co. OCLC 25115985
  • 1952: Clues to Christabel, London: Pan Books. OCLC 155919411
  • 1959: Mizmaze, London: Michael Joseph. OCLC 16252800

Further readingEdit

  • Biography and bibliography by M. Eleanor Irwin
  • How to Conceal a Female Scholar; or, the Invisible Classicist of Cardiff by Edith Hall
  • Deininger, Michelle, and Claire Flay-Petty, "University Connections and Professional Lives: S. Beryl Jones, Kathleen Freeman and Liliane Clopet", New Welsh Reader, 119 (December 2018). Snippet available at https://www.newwelshreview.com/article.php?id=2307
  • Deininger, Michelle and Claire Flay-Petty, "The Cash-Box and The Specimen Tin", Planet: The Welsh Internationalist, 226 (Summer 2017).
  • Greene, W. C. (1949), "Review: Pre-Socratic Philosophers Ancilla to the Pre-Socratic Philosophers: A Complete Translation of the Fragments in Diels by Kathleen Freeman", The Classical Journal, Vol. 45, No. 1 (October 1949), pp. 53–4 JSTOR 3293307
  • Irwin, M. E. (2004), "Freeman, Kathleen (1897–1959)", in Todd, R. B (ed.), The Dictionary of British Classicists. Volume I, A-F, Bristol: Thoemmes Continuum, pp. 343–4
  • Irwin, Eleanor (2016), "An Unconventional Classicist: the Work and Life of Kathleen Freeman" in Rosie Wyles and Edith Hall (eds), Women classical scholars : unsealing the fountain from the Renaissance to Jacqueline de Romilly (Oxford University Press)[31][2]
  • Turner, Nick (2019). "Miss Fitt's Misfits: Mary Fitt and the Case of the Vanished Crime Writer". Clues: A Journal of Detection. 37 (2): 105–14.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b For a brief note on Liliane Clopet, her career and her writings see Biography and bibliography by M. Eleanor Irwin and How to Conceal a Female Scholar; or, the Invisible Classicist of Cardiff by Edith Hall.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Irwin, M. Eleanor (27 October 2016), Wyles, Rosie; Hall, Edith (eds.), "An Unconventional Classicist", Women Classical Scholars, Oxford University Press, pp. 313–334, doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198725206.003.0016, ISBN 978-0-19-872520-6, retrieved 22 February 2022
  3. ^ a b "Inspirational People: 3. Kathleen Freeman – Classicist and Fiction Writer". Cardiff University. 13 December 2016. Retrieved 22 February 2022.
  4. ^ a b "Classics & Class » Kathleen Freeman's Ancillary Classicism". Retrieved 9 April 2022.
  5. ^ Irwin, M. E. (2004) 'Freeman, Kathleen (1897–1959)', in Todd, R. B ed. The Dictionary of British Classicists. Volume I, A-F. p. 343.
  6. ^ Saxby, Ida Beata (1918). Some conditions affecting the growth and permanence of desires (Thesis). OCLC 1016050303.
  7. ^ Dain, Alphonse (1951). "Kathleen Freeman, The Pre-Socratic Philosophers. A Companion to Diels Fragmente der Vorsokratiker, 1946 ; Ancilla to the Pre-Socratic Philosophers, A complete translation of the Fragments ..., 1948". Bulletin de l'Association Guillaume Budé. 1 (2): 111–112.
  8. ^ "Issue 162". genome.ch.bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  9. ^ "Broadcasting." Times, 29 November 1926, 21. The Times Digital Archive (accessed 23 March 2022). External Link
  10. ^ "Programmes." Times, 19 November 1928, 8. The Times Digital Archive (accessed 23 March 2022). External Link
  11. ^ Freeman, Kathleen (27 October 2016). Greek City-States. Hauraki Publishing. ISBN 978-1-78720-196-5.
  12. ^ William, Charles (25 October 1941). "Ancient Tyrants". The Times Literary Supplement. No. 2073. London, England. p. 531.
  13. ^ Irwin, M. E. (2004) 'Freeman, Kathleen (1897–1959)', in Todd, R. B ed. The Dictionary of British Classicists. Volume I, A-F. pp. 343–4.
  14. ^ Irwin, M. E. (2004) 'Freeman, Kathleen (1897–1959)', in Todd, R. B ed. The Dictionary of British Classicists. Volume I, A-F. p. 344.
  15. ^ For a comprehensive list of Freeman's writings see Biography and bibliography by M. Eleanor Irwin.
  16. ^ Carty (2014). A Dictionary of Literary Pseudonyms in the English Language. New York. p. 448. ISBN 978-1-135-95578-6. OCLC 931534831.
  17. ^ "A SEDATE TRIANGLE; MARTIN HANNER. A Comedy. By Kathleen Freeman, 328 pp., New York: Harcourt, Brace & Co. $2.50". The New York Times. 17 October 1926. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 22 February 2022.
  18. ^ "gadetection / Detection Club, The". gadetection.pbworks.com. Retrieved 22 February 2022.
  19. ^ Turner, N. (2019). "Miss Fitt's Misfits: Mary Fitt and the Case of the Vanished Crime Writer". Clues: A Journal of Detection. 37 (2): 105–114. ISSN 0742-4248.
  20. ^ "Mary Fitt". www.litencyc.com. Retrieved 23 March 2022.
  21. ^ Bohata, Kirsti; Morgan, Mihangel; Osborne, Huw (21 October 2021). Queer Square Mile. Parthian Books. ISBN 978-1-913640-25-5.
  22. ^ The Cambridge history of Welsh literature. Geraint Evans, Helen Fulton. Cambridge, United Kingdom. 2019. ISBN 978-1-316-22720-6. OCLC 1099309674.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  23. ^ a b "Kathleen Freeman". www.utsc.utoronto.ca. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  24. ^ a b "The Work and Life of Solon. With a Translation of his Poems. by FREEMAN, Kathleen.: (1926) Signed by Author(s) | Peter Harrington. ABA/ ILAB". www.abebooks.co.uk. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  25. ^ "Peter Harrington | ABA: The Antiquarian Bookseller Association". dev.aba.org.uk. Retrieved 17 May 2022.
  26. ^ Walker, E. M. (1927). "The Work and Life of Solon - The Work and Life of Solon. With a translation of his Poems. By Kathleen Freeman, M.A., Lecturer in Greek, University of South Wales, Monmouthshire. Pp. 236. Cardiff: The University of Wales Press Board; London: Humphrey Milford, 1926. Cloth, 10s. net". The Classical Review. 41 (1): 17–19. doi:10.1017/S0009840X00031437. ISSN 1464-3561. S2CID 246880212.
  27. ^ "Pre-Socratic Philosophers. A companion to Diels's Fragmente der Vorsokratiker . By Kathleen Freeman. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1946, pp. xiii+486. 25 s ". Greece and Rome. 17 (51): 132–133. 1948. doi:10.1017/S0017383500010196. ISSN 0017-3835.
  28. ^ Morrow, Glenn R. (1949). "Review of Ancilla to the Pre-Socratic Philosophers: A Complete Translation of the Fragments in Diels, Fragmente der Vorsokratiker". The Classical Weekly. 43 (2): 28–29. doi:10.2307/4342608. ISSN 1940-641X. JSTOR 4342608.
  29. ^ K., H.; Freeman, Kathleen (27 October 1949). "Ancilla to the Pre-Socratic Philosophers. A Complete Translation of the Fragments in Diels' Fragmente der Vorsokratiker". The Journal of Philosophy. 46 (22): 717. doi:10.2307/2020243. ISSN 0022-362X. JSTOR 2020243.
  30. ^ Squire, John (9 February 1952). "Greek Views on Five Fundamental Matters. God, Man and State. Greek concepts by Kathleen Freeman". The Illustrated London News. p. 206. Retrieved 23 March 2022.
  31. ^ Women classical scholars : unsealing the fountain from the Renaissance to Jacqueline de Romilly. Wyles, Rosie and Hall, Edith (First ed.). Oxford, United Kingdom. 2016. ISBN 978-0191038297. OCLC 964291395.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)

External linksEdit

  • Ancilla to the Pre-Socratic Philosophers – Kathleen Freeman's complete translation of the fragments in Diels (Fifth Edition, B-fragments): Google Books, HTML
  • Inspirational People: 3. Kathleen Freeman – Classicist and Fiction Writer
  • Entry for the Dictionary of Welsh Biography