Thomas Nelson

Stipendiary Lecturer in Classics


Tom Nelson is a Stipendiary Lecturer in Classics at Wadham and a British Academy Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Faculty of Classics.

His research interests include archaic, classical and Hellenistic Greek literature (esp. poetry); intertextuality and allusion; citation and quotation; (meta-)poetics; Hellenistic royal ideologies; the interrelation of image and text; and Roman receptions of Greek (esp. Hellenistic) literature.

He is particularly interested in rethinking traditional narratives of literary history, an aspiration which is reflected in the two main strands of his current research: first, he seeks to highlight the continuities between the intertextual practices of archaic/classical poets and those of later literary cultures; and second, he aims to unearth the distinctive aesthetics and priorities of Hellenistic poets located beyond Ptolemaic Alexandria. He has recently completed a book on Markers of Allusion in Archaic Greek Poetry (forthcoming with Cambridge University Press), and is currently preparing a new project on Hellenistic epic fragments.

Tom teaches a wide range of topics in Greek and Latin language and literature. This year, his teaching includes the Aeneid, Latin Core, Ovid; the Iliad, Early Greek Hexameter Poetry, Hellenistic Poetry; Texts & Contexts; Greek and Latin translation and prose composition.

Before joining Wadham in 2021, Tom was a Research Fellow at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, and an Affiliated Lecturer of the Cambridge Classics Faculty. As a student, he completed his BA and MSt at University College, Oxford, and his PhD at Trinity College, Cambridge.

Other Websites

Archaic and Classical Greek Poetry:

Markers of Allusion in Archaic Greek Poetry. Cambridge (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming).

“Talk and Text: The Pre-Alexandrian Footnote from Homer to Theodectes”, in A. Kelly and H.L. Spelman (eds.) Texts and Intertexts in Archaic and Classical Greece. Cambridge (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming).

“Iphigenia in the Iliad and the Architecture of Homeric Allusion”, TAPA 152.1 (2022) 55–101 [].

“Intertextual Agōnes in Archaic Greek Epic: Penelope vs. the Catalogue of Women”, Yearbook of Ancient Greek Epic 5 (2021) 25–57 [].

“Achilles’ Heel: (Im)mortality in the Iliad”, Omnibus 82 (2021) 7–9.

“Repeating the Unrepeated: Allusions to Homeric Hapax Legomena in Archaic and Classical Greek Poetry”, in D. Beck (ed.) (2021) Repetition, Communication, and Meaning in the Ancient World. Orality and Literacy in the Ancient World Vol. 13, Mnemosyne Supplement 442. Leiden (Brill): 119–157 [].

“Archilochus’ Cologne Epode and Homer’s Quivering Spear (fr. 196a.52 IEG2)”, Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 219 (2021) 4–7.

Hellenistic Poetry:

“Early Hellenistic Epic”, in M. Perale, J. Kwapisz, G. Taietti and B. Cartlidge (eds.) Hellenistic Poetry Before Callimachus. Cambridge (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming).

“Moero of Byzantium”, in M. Perale, J. Kwapisz, G. Taietti and B. Cartlidge (eds.) Hellenistic Poetry Before Callimachus. Cambridge (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming).

“Epiphany and Salvation in Inscribed Hellenistic Poetry: Bacchic and Odyssean Resonances in the Verse-Inscription of Hyssaldomos of Mylasa”, in M.A. Harder, J.H. Klooster, R.F. Regtuit and G.C. Wakker (eds.) Crisis and Resilience in Hellenistic Poetry. Hellenistica Groningana. Leuven (Peeters, forthcoming).

“Tragic Noise and Rhetorical Frigidity in Lycophron’s Alexandra”, Classical Quarterly 71.1 (2021) 200–215 (with K. Molesworth) [].

“Beating the Galatians: Ideologies, Analogies and Allegories in Hellenistic Literature and Art”, in A. Coşkun (ed.) (2021) Galatian Victories and Other Studies into the Agency and Identity of the Galatians in the Hellenistic and Early-Roman Periods. Colloquia Antiqua 33. Leuven (Peeters): 97–144.

“The Coma Stratonices: Royal Hair Encomia and Ptolemaic-Seleucid Rivalry?”, in M.A. Harder, J.H. Klooster, R.F. Regtuit and G.C. Wakker (eds.) (2021) Women and Power in Hellenistic Poetry. Hellenistica Groningana 26. Leuven (Peeters): 299–320.

“Attalid Aesthetics: The Pergamene ‘Baroque’ Reconsidered”, Journal of Hellenic Studies 140 (2020) 176–198 [].

“Nicander’s Hymn to Attalus: Pergamene Panegyric”, The Cambridge Classical Journal 66 (2020) 182–202 [].

“Penelopean Simaetha: A Flawed Paradigm of Femininity in Theocritus’ Second Idyll”, in C. Cusset, P. Belenfant and C.-E. Nardone (eds.) (2020) Féminités hellénistiques: Voix, genre, représentations. Hellenistica Groningana 25. Leuven (Peeters): 387–405.

“Metapoetic Manoeuvres Between Callimachus and Apollonius: A Response to Annette Harder”, Aevum Antiquum 19 (2020) 107–127 [].

“‘Most Musicall, Most Melancholy’: Avian Aesthetics of Lament in Greek and Roman Elegy”, Dictynna: Revue de poétique latine 16 (2019) 1–47 [].

“The Shadow of Aristophanes: Hellenistic Poetry’s Reception of Comic Poetics”, in M.A. Harder, R.F. Regtuit and G.C. Wakker (eds.) (2018) Drama and Performance in Hellenistic Poetry. Hellenistica Groningana 23. Leuven (Peeters): 225–271.