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Professor Mary Beard

Professor Mary Beard

Professor of Classics

Newnham College

Office Phone: 01223 335162 (Faculty) / 335712 (College)


I am Classics editor of the Times Literary Supplement.

Research Supervision

Recent topics: The culture of Roman display; Roman colour; paradigms of power in the Roman empire.

Key Publications


Pompeii: the life of a Roman Town (London and Cambridge, MA., 2008)
The Roman Triumph (Cambridge, Ma., 2007)
The Colosseum (with Keith Hopkins) (London and Cambridge, Ma, 2004)
The Parthenon (London and Cambridge, Ma., 2002)
Classical Art: from Greece to Rome (with John Henderson) (Oxford, 2001)
The Invention of Jane Harrison (Cambridge, Ma., 2000)
Religions of Rome (with John North and Simon Price), (Cambridge, 1998)
Classics: a very short introduction (with John Henderson) (Oxford, 1995)
Pagan Priests (ed. with John North) (London, 1990)
The Good Working Mother's Guide (London, 1989)
Rome in the Late Republic (with Michael Crawford) (London, 1985, 2nd ed. 1999)

Among my favourite articles are:

“While Ridgeway lives research can ne’er be dull”, in C. Stray (ed.), The Owl of Minerva: Cambridge Praelections 1906 (Cambridge, 2004)
"Ciceronian Correspondences: making a Book out of Letters", in T. P. Wiseman (ed.), Classics in Progress, ( London , 2002), 103-144
"Looking (harder) for Roman myth:  Dumézil, declamation and the problems of definition" in F. Graf (ed.), Mythos in mythenloser Gesellschaft:  das Paradeigma Roms (Coll. Rauricum III, Stuttgart, 1993), 44-64
"Souvenirs of culture:  deciphering (in) the museum", Art History 15 (1992), 505-32
"A Complex of Times:  no more sheep on Romulus ' birthday", PCPhS  1987, 1-15 (reprinted in C. Ando (ed.), Roman Religion ( Edinburgh , 2003))
"The Sexual Status of Vestal Virgins", JRS  70 (1980), 12-27

Upcoming events

Ancient Philosophy Seminar

Oct 15, 2015


The B Club

Oct 19, 2015


Art under Fire: Art Crime in Times of War and Peace

Oct 20, 2015

Classics Faculty, room G19 AND Museum of Classical Archaeology

Ancient Philosophy Seminar

Oct 22, 2015


Casts by Candlelight

Oct 23, 2015

Cast Gallery, Museum of Classical Archaeology

Upcoming events

RSS Feed Latest news

German History Journal's Best Article of 2015

Sep 14, 2015

The Faculty is very proud to announce that Dr Helen Roche has been awarded the Best Article of 2015 prize by the journal German History for her article, 'Surviving Stunde Null: Narrating the fate of Nazi elite-school pupils during the collapse of the Third Reich'.

Cambridge Classics Graduate Open Day - Saturday 14th November

Sep 07, 2015

Cambridge Classics Graduate Open Day - Saturday 14th November

Following Hercules: the Story of Classical Art

Aug 19, 2015

A colossal polystyrene statue of Hercules by contemporary artist Matt Darbyshire will be the star exhibit in a new exhibition at the Fitzwilliam Museum exploring the story of classical art.

Classics in Communities Conference (19 Sept 2015)

Jul 30, 2015

This conference aims to bring together all those interested in the teaching and learning of Latin and Greek in schools, colleges, universities and communities in the UK and around the world. Building on the success of the first ‘Classics in Communities’ conference in Oxford in November 2013, the themes of this year’s conference will include: widening access to Classical languages; emerging practices in Classics pedagogies; improving community cohesion through Classics; the cross-curricular value of Classical languages and the appeal/merits of non-linguistic Classics. Keynote speakers will be Tim Whitmarsh, A.G. Leventis Professor of Greek Culture at the University of Cambridge and Tom Holland, celebrated British novelist and ancient historian.

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