Department of Ancient History

Dr Trevor Evans

ancient-staff trevorevansBA (Hons) UNE, PhD Usyd.

Contact Details:

Telephone: +61 2 9850 8780
Fax: +61 2 9850 8240
Office: W6A 503


Trevor Evans is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Ancient History, Faculty of Arts and member of the Ancient Cultures Research Centre. He took his first degree at the University of New England (1985-91), focusing on ancient languages, and went on to pursue doctoral studies at the University of Sydney under the supervision of Dr John Lee (1992-7). The early years of his professional career were spent at Macquarie University as Research Officer (1998-2001) and later Macquarie University Research Fellow (2001-4).

Transferring to the University of Oxford he worked as Assistant Editor of the Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources (2004-7) and was also appointed Senior Golding Fellow at Brasenose College (2005-7). He returned to Macquarie in 2007 to take up a lectureship within the Department of Ancient History as a member of the Concentration of Research Excellence (CORE) in Ancient Cultures. He was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2008 (effective 1 January 2009).

Trevor has broad research interests in the history of the Greek and Latin languages within their changing cultural contexts, including the complex issues of linguistic diversity, multilingualism, and ancient literacy. A special focus is the history of the Greek language in the post-classical period (300bc-ad600). He has published on the language of Greek non-literary papyri and related sources, the language of the Septuagint, and Latin lexicography.

At Macquarie he is Co-Director, with fellow CORE-appointee Dr Malcolm Choat, of the research programme 'Language, Script, and Acculturation in Graeco-Roman Egypt'. He is also Chair of the Macquarie Papyri Research and Development Committee.

Current Projectsancient lop

  1. 'Words from the Sand: A Lexical Analysis of Early Greek Papyri from Egypt': a contribution to the study of the ancient Greek vocabulary in the post-classical period, in collaboration with Dr James Aitken (University of Cambridge, UK) and Dr John Lee (Macquarie University), and supported by Australian Research Council (ARC DP) funding for the period 2010-14.
  2. A monograph-length study of the Greek of the third century BC Zenon Archive (in preparation).

Recent Projects

  1. 'Bilingualism and the Greek Language in Hellenistic Egypt: Evidence from the Zenon Archive': a contribution to the study of ancient bilingualism, with Research Assistants Helena Bolle, Genevieve Young, and Rachel Yuen-Collingridge, and supported by institutional (MQNS) funding, 2008-9.
  2. 'Language, Literacy, and Acculturation in Early Ptolemaic Egypt': a contribution to the study of ancient literacy, in collaboration with Dr Mark Depauw (K.U. Leuven, Belgium), and supported by institutional (MQSN) funding, 2009.

In addition to research activities Trevor has taught ancient languages and history at the University of Sydney (1994-9), Macquarie University (1998, 2003), and St Anne's College, Oxford (2006-7). He collaborated with the late Professor Kevin Lee in founding the University of Sydney's Latin Summer School (Co-Director 1995-9) and taught at many Macquarie Greek Summer (and Winter) Schools (1988-94, 1998). He now convenes at Macquarie the Department of Ancient History's advanced units in ancient Greek and Latin, and (in 1st Semester 2010) elementary Classical Hebrew.

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Awards and Grants

  • 2010-14 Australian Research Council Discovery-Project Grant.
  • 2009 Macquarie University Safety Net Grant.
  • 2008-9 Macquarie University New Staff Grant.
  • 2006 Five grants in support of the conference 'Buried Linguistic Treasure' (Christ Church, Oxford, 30 June-2 July 2006), from:
    • The British Academy;
    • The Egypt Exploration Society;
    • The Craven Committee;
    • The Board of the Faculty of Classics (University of Oxford);
    • The Jowett Copyright Trustees.
  • 2004-6 Australian Research Council Discovery-Project Grant.
  • 2004 Macquarie University Research Development Grant: Visiting Scholar Award.
  • 2001-4 Macquarie University Research Fellowship.
  • 2001 Australian Academy of the Humanities Travelling Fellowship.
  • 1992-5 Australian Postgraduate Research Award, University of Sydney.
  • 1991 University Medal and Booth Medal, University of New England.

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Selected Publications


  1. Verbal Syntax in the Greek Pentateuch: Natural Greek Usage and Hebrew Interference (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001).
  2. With D. Obbink, The Language of the Papyri (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010).
    [nearby, insert image LOPjacketFinal.jpg, with caption "The Language of the Papyri jacket image (courtesy of Oxford University Press)"]
  3. Howlett, D.R. (ed.), assisted by T.G. Christchev, T.V. Evans, P.O. Piper, and C. White, Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources, (Oxford: Oxford University Press for the British Academy):
  4. Fasc. IX: P-Pel (2005);
  5. Fasc. X: Pel-Phi (2006);
  6. Fasc. XI: Phi-Pos (2007).
  7. Fasc. XII: Pos-Pro (2009).
  8. Fasc. XIII: Pro-Q (forthcoming 2010). Looking for obelisk in Paris, October 2006


Book Chapters

  1. 'Linguistic and Stylistic Variation in the Zenon Archive', in M. Leiwo, H. Halla-aho, and M. Vierros (eds.), Variation and Change in Greek and Latin: Problems and Methods (Helsinki, forthcoming).
  2. 'Complaints of the Natives in a Greek Dress: the Zenon Archive and the Problem of Egyptian Interference', in A. Mullen and P. James (eds.), Multilingualism in the Greco-Roman Worlds (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming).
  3. 'Identifying the Language of the Individual in the Zenon Archive', in T.V. Evans and D. Obbink (eds), The Language of the Papyri (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010), 51-70.
  4. With D. Obbink, 'Introduction', in T.V. Evans and D. Obbink (eds), The Language of the Papyri (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010), 1-12.
  5. 'The Court Function of the Interpreter in Genesis 42:23 and Early Greek Papyri', in J.K. Aitken, J. Dines, S. Pearce, and T. Rajak (eds), Jewish Perspectives on Hellenistic Kingship (Berkeley, Los Angeles, and London: University of California Press, 2007), 238-52.
  6. 'Greetings from Alexandria' in J. Frösén, T. Purola, and E. Salmenkivi (eds), Proceedings of the XXIV International Congress of Papyrology, Helsinki, 1st-7th of August 2004 (Helsinki: Finnish Society of Sciences and Letters, 2007), 299-308.
  7. 'Greek Numbers 6, 22-27 on Vellum and Stone: A Note on the Verbal Forms in the Thessalonica Inscription', in R. Pierri (ed.), Grammatica Intellectio Scripturae: Saggi filologici di Greco biblico in onore di Lino Cignelli OFM (Jerusalem: Franciscan Printing Press, 2006), 109-116.
  8. 'Periphrastic Tense Forms in the Greek Tobit', in F. García Martínez and M. Vervenne (eds), with the collaboration of B. Doyle, Interpreting Translation: Studies on the LXX and Ezekiel in Honour of Johan Lust (Leuven: Peeters, 2005), 109-19.
  9. 'Future Directions for Aspect Studies in Ancient Greek', in B.A. Taylor, J.A.L. Lee, P.R. Burton, and R.E. Whitaker (eds),Biblical Greek Language and Lexicography: Essays in Honor of Frederick W. Danker (Grand Rapids, Mich. and Cambridge: Eerdmans, 2004), 199-206.
  10. 'Orality, Greek Literacy, and Early Ptolemaic Papyri', in C.J. Mackie (ed.), Oral Performance and its Context (Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2004), 195-208.
  11. 'A Hebraism of Mixed Motivation', in R. Sollamo and S. Sipilä (eds), Helsinki Perspectives on the Translation Technique of the Septuagint (Helsinki and Göttingen: Finnish Exegetical Society and Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2001), 211-28.

Journal Articles

ancient lop2

Looking for obelisk in Paris, October 2006

  1. 'The Use of Linguistic Criteria for Dating Septuagint Books' (forthcoming).
  2. 'Counting Chickens in PSI VI 569', Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik, 173 (2010), 191-200.
  3. 'Valedictory erroso in the Zenon Archive Letters of Hierokles', Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik, 153 (2005), 155-8.
  4. 'Approaches to the Language of the Septuagint', Journal of Jewish Studies, 56 (2005), 25-33.
  5. 'A Note on boule in P.Col.Zen. I 10', Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik, 145 (2003), 246-8.
  6. 'The Last of the Optatives', Classical Philology, 98 (2003), 70-80.
  7. 'Some Alleged Confusions in Translation from Hebrew to Greek', Biblica, 83 (2002), 238-48.
  8. 'Another Ghost: The Greek Epistolary Perfect', Glotta, 75 (1999, appearing 2001), 194-221.
  9. 'The Comparative Optative: A Homeric Reminiscence in the Greek Pentateuch?', Vetus Testamentum, 49 (1999), 487-504.


  1. 'The New Oxyrhynchus Glossary' (Review of F. Schironi, From Alexandria to Babylon: Near Eastern Languages and Hellenistic Erudition in the Oxyrhynchus Glossary (P. Oxy. 1802 + 4812), in Classical Review, 60/2 (2010), 415-17.
  2. Review of C. A. La'da, Greek Documentary Papyri from Ptolemaic Egypt (= CPR XXVIII), at Bryn Mawr Classical Review(2009) (=<>), 2009.09.30.
  3. Review of J.A.L. Lee, Greek Accents in Eight Lessons, in Classicum , 33 (2007), 31.
  4. Review of J.D. Denniston, Greek Prose Style, D.S. Raven, Greek Metre, and G.S. Thompson, Greek Prose Usage, inAncient History: Resources for Teachers, 29/1 (1999), 91-3.

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