Tim Whitmarsh


Timothy John Guy Whitmarsh, FBA (born 23 January 1970) is a British classicist and Regius Professor of Greek at the University of Cambridge. He is best known for his work on the Greek literary culture of the Roman Empire, especially the Second Sophistic and the ancient Greek novel.

Early life and educationEdit

Whitmarsh was born on 23 January 1970 in Chelmsford, Essex, England. He was educated at Moor Park School, a Catholic prep school near Ludlow, and at Malvern College, then an all-boys private school.[1] He took his undergraduate degree and doctorate at the University of Cambridge.

Academic careerEdit

From 2001 to 2007 he taught in the department of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Exeter where he remains an honorary fellow.[2] He then served as E. P. Warren Praelector, Fellow and Tutor in Greek at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, and Professor of Ancient Literatures at the University of Oxford.[3]

In October 2014, he succeeded Paul Cartledge as the A. G. Leventis Professor of Greek Culture at the University of Cambridge.[4] In 2023, he became Regius Professor of Greek in the same university, succeeding Richard Hunter.[5]

Classics ConfidentialEdit

Whitmarsh appears in the Classics Confidential series in conversation with various classical scholars:

  • Exploring Abrahamic Religions—in conversation with Guy Stroumsa, 30 July 2013
  • The Philosophy of Ancient Atheism—in conversation with David Sedley, 9 August 2013
  • Monotheism, Disbelief and the Hebrew Bible—in conversation with Francesca Stavrakopoulou, 20 September 2013
  • Socrates on Trial—in conversation with Bettany Hughes, 30 September 2013


His publications include Greek Literature and the Roman Empire: The Politics of Imitation,[6] Ancient Greek Literature,[7] The Second Sophistic,[8] and Narrative and Identity in the Ancient Greek Novel: Returning Romance,[9] Beyond the Second Sophistic: Adventures in Greek Postclassicism.[10]

  • Dirty Love: The Genealogy of the Ancient Greek Novel. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018.
  • Battling the Gods: Atheism in the Ancient World, Faber & Faber, 2016


  1. ^ "Whitmarsh, Prof. Timothy John Guy". Who's Who 2020. Oxford University Press. 1 December 2019. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.U279563. Retrieved 17 February 2020.
  2. ^ University of Exeter Department of Classics accessed 3 October 2014
  3. ^ "Tim Whitmarsh". President and Fellows. Corpus Christi College, Oxford. Retrieved 8 May 2014.
  4. ^ "AG Leventis Professor of Greek Culture". University of Cambridge. 21 January 2014. Retrieved 8 March 2014.
  5. ^ "Elections and appointments" (PDF). Cambridge University Reporter (6683). 18 January 2023. Retrieved 20 January 2023.
  6. ^ Tim Whitmarsh, Greek Literature and the Roman Empire: The Politics of Imitation. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001. ISBN 978-0-19-927137-5.
  7. ^ Tim Whitmarsh, Ancient Greek Literature. Cambridge: Polity Press, 2004. ISBN 978-0-7456-2792-2.
  8. ^ Tim Whitmarsh, The Second Sophistic. Greece and Rome New Surveys in the Classics 35. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005. ISBN 978-0-19-856881-0.
  9. ^ Tim Whitmarsh, Narrative and Identity in the Ancient Greek Novel: Returning Romance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011. ISBN 978-0-521-82391-3.
  10. ^ Beyond the Second Sophistic: Adventures in Greek Postclassicism. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2013. ISBN 978-0-520-27681-9.
Academic offices
Preceded by A. G. Leventis Professor of Greek Culture at Cambridge University
Succeeded by
Preceded by Regius Professor of Greek at Cambridge University
Succeeded by