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Professor David Whitehead

MA, PhD (Cambridge), DLit (QUB), MRIA, FRHistS

Professor of Ancient History

Pathway co-ordinator for Ancient History (L3); Joint Pathway Co-ordinator - History and Philosophy; Advisor of Studies, History joint pathways.

Tel: +44 (0) 28 9097 5270

Office: 17UQ.G02

David Whitehead, born in Nottinghamshire in 1949, won scholarships to Nottingham High School and from there to Clare College Cambridge. Upon graduating with first-class honours in Parts I and II of the Classical Tripos he undertook a PhD in Ancient History under the supervision of Moses Finley. He has held, at various times, Research Fellowships at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, and in the USA (School of Historical Studies, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton; [Harvard] Center for Hellenic Studies, Washington DC) and Visiting Fellowships at New College and All Souls Oxford; he has also been a British Academy Research Reader and was the inaugural Co-Director of M.H.Hansen’s Copenhagen Polis Centre. After teaching for three years in Cambridge and seventeen at the Victoria University of Manchester (Department of History) he was appointed to the then Chair of Classics at Queen’s in 1992. He is a founding editor of Oxford University Press’s Clarendon Ancient History Series, Senior Editor (and a Managing Editor) of the electronic Suda-On-Line, and an Editor of Brill’s New Jacoby

Research Interests

Professor Whitehead’s teaching and research expertise lies in Greek history and Greek prose literature, especially (but not exclusively) those of classical Athens. Areas of special interest likewise span the divide, such as it is, between Ancient History and Classics: political and social history, epigraphy and prosopography, historiography, law and lawcourt oratory, lexicography, military writers.

Select Publications


  • (With Lene Rubinstein), Isokrates 16–21: edited with introduction, translation and commentary (Cambridge, forthcoming).
  • Apollodorus Mechanicus, Siege-matters: translated with introduction and commentary (Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag, 2010).
  • (With P.H.Blyth), Athenaeus Mechanicus, On Machines: translated with introduction and commentary (Stuttgart 2004).
  • Hypereides, The Forensic Speeches: introduction, translation, and commentary (Oxford: OUP, 2000).
  • Aineias the Tactician, How to Survive under Siege: translated with introduction and commentary (Oxford: Clarendon, 1990; 2nd ed. Bristol, 2001).
  • The Demes of Attica, 508/7–ca.250 BC: a political and social study (Princeton: Princeton UP, 1986).
  • (With Michael Crawford), Archaic and Classical Greece: a selection of ancient sources in translation (Cambridge: CUP, 1983 and reprints).
  • The Ideology of the Athenian Metic (Cambridge: CUP, 1977).

Articles and chapters:

  • The epigraphical transcripts and travels of David Ross of Bladensburg’, in Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik, 189 (2014).
  • 'Hyperides' Timandros: observations and suggestions', in Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies, lii (2009)
  • 'Fact and fantasy in Greek military writers', in Acta Antiqua Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae, xlviii (2008).
  • 'Athenian cours in military graphai', in E.M. Harris and G. Thuer (eds), Symposion 2007 (Vienna, 2008)


Professor David Whitehead teaches on the following modules:

AHY1001 Ancient History 1
AHY2013 Greece and Macedon 404-337 B.C: Liberty Won  and Lost
AHY3065 Athenian Law and Society 1
AHY3069 Athenian Law and Society 2

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