Emeritus Professor of Comparative Philology
Fellow of St John's College
Areas of expertise
The history and structure of the Greek and Latin languages (including medieval and modern as well as ancient Greek), linguistic theory, historical linguistics. He was co-director (with David Holton) of an AHRC funded research project to produce the world's first grammar of the medieval Greek vernacular (to be published by CUP), and is currently co-director (with James Clackson) of an AHRC funded project to investigate the long-term impact of Greek on the languages of ancient Italy.
A wide range of topics in Greek historical syntax from ancient to modern Greek, including the expression of mood and modality in Homeric Greek, noun phrase structure in ancient and medieval Greek, the emergence of future periphrases in late antique and medieval Greek, the evolution of the syntax of complementation in late antique Greek with particular reference to the Roman and Byzantine papyri, and the development of the ancient Greek aspectual system with special reference to the role of the perfect.
Greek: A History of the Language and its Speakers (revised and expanded 2nd edition), Wiley-Blackwell, 2010
The Blackwell History of the Latin Language, Blackwell, 2007 - with James Clackson.
Generative Grammar, Longman/Pearson, 1987
Space and Time in Homer, Arno Press New York, 1983.
Plus: many articles on the morphology, syntax and semantics of ancient, medieval and modern Greek], including the following:
‘Ouk ísmen oudén: Negative Concord and Negative Polarity in the History of Greek’. To appear in the Journal of Greek Linguistics 14.1 (2014).
‘High Register Medieval Greek: ‘Diglossia’ and What Lay behind it’. To appear in Caterina Carpinato and Olga Tribulato (eds.) Storia e Storie della Lingua Greca, Venice: Università Ca’ Foscari (2014).
‘Three and a Half Millennia of Greek: Biology, Logic and Experience’. To appear in Paola Crisma and Giuseppe Longobardi (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Diachronic and Historical Linguistics (2014).