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Centre for the Study of the Ancient Mediterranean and the Near East

Members of the Centre for the Study of the Ancient Mediterranean and the Near East

Dr Phillip Horky, AM (Chicago), PhD (Southern California)

(email at

Areas of Doctoral Supervision

Most areas and periods of ancient philosophy (especially Presocratics, Plato, Aristotle, and Pythagoreanism); Greek literature; intellectual history of Greece, Rome, and the Near East.

Current PhD Students

Nicolò Benzi: Philosophy in Verse: Early Greek Poetry and the Expression of Philosophical Thought (Primary Supervisor)

Giulia de Cesaris: The Philosophical Path of Pythagoreanism in the Imperial Age (Primary Supervisor)

Matteo Milesi: The Reception of Homer, Hesiod and Pythagoras among the Neoplatonist Philosophers (Co-supervisor with Prof. Barbara Graziosi)

Richard Beniston: Seneca and Post-Hellenistic Stoicism (Secondary Supervisor)

Jun Yeob Lee: The aperilēpton in Epicureanism (Secondary Supervisor)


Phillip Sidney Horky is Lecturer of Classics and Director of the Centre for the Study of the Ancient Mediterranean and Near East (CAMNE). His research focuses on ancient philosophy, especially in its literary, historical, and intellectual contexts. He has recently published a monograph, Plato and Pythagoreanism (Oxford University Press, 2013; paperback forthcoming), on the importance of mathematical Pythagoreanism for the development of Plato's philosophy, as well as articles on cosmology in the Early Academy, dialectic and ontology in Theophrastus' Metaphysics, and Hellenistic ethics in ancient Italy. He has also recently completed several new articles: two are devoted to Aristotle's responses to the Presocratics (Empedocles and Philolaus, respectively); one is a study of theoretical philosophy among the Hellenistic Pythagoreans; and another proposes to determine the notion of 'Italic' philosophy in the late Hellenistic world.

Dr Horky is working on three major research projects. The first project, tentatively entitled Pythagorean Philosophy, 250 BCE to 200 CE, investigates the philosophy of those Hellenistic and Post-Hellenistic philosophers who associated themselves with Pythagoreanism after its dissolution in the mid-4th Century BCE. The second project is the development of an international research network, with special focus on the idea of the Ancient Republic, co-organized with Prof. Monte Johnson of the University of California-San Diego and Dr Grant Nelsestuen of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. This project is currently funded by a Global Engagement Facilitation Grant from the International Office at Durham University and an A.W. Mellon Foundation Workshop Grant from the Center for the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Finally, Dr Horky is preparing an edited volume on Cosmos in the Ancient World, with papers taken from Classics and Ancient History's 2012-13 Research Seminar. Publications, drafts, and a current CV can be found on his web page.

Before coming to Durham, Dr Horky taught at Stanford University (2007-10). For the academic year 2010-11, he was a Residential Fellow at Harvard University's Center for Hellenic Studies

Dr Horky also runs workofmemory, a blog with occasional thoughts on ancient philosophy, classics, and intellectual history. From 2012-15, Dr Horky was a Member of the Council of the Hellenic Society, and he is on the editorial board of the Journal of Hellenic Studies. He is also co-editor of the Greece & Rome New Surveys in the Classics Series, published by Cambridge University Press, and a member of the journals editorial board for the Classical Association.

Research Interests

  • Ancient Philosophy
  • Greek Literature
  • Intellectual History
  • Greece and the Near East
  • Ancient Italy and Sicily


Books: authored

Books: reviews

Essays in edited volumes

  • Horky, Phillip Sidney. (Forthcoming). 'Empedocles Democraticus: Hellenistic Biography at the Intersection of Philosophy and Politics'. In Philosophos Bios. Eds. Schorn, S. & Bonazzi, M. Turnhout: Brepols.
  • Horky, Phillip Sidney. (Forthcoming). 'Italic Philosophy in the Hellenistic Age'. In The Oxford Handbook of Roman Philosophy. Shearin, W.S. & Flecher, R. Oxford University Press.
  • Horky, Phillip Sidney (Forthcoming). 'Pseudo-Archytas' Protreptics? On Wisdom in its Contexts'. In Second Sailing: Alternative Prospectives on Plato. Nails, D. & Tarrant, H. Societas Scientiarum Fennica.

Journal papers: academic

Journal papers: popular

  • Horky, Phillip Sidney (2015). 'Flying Scholars and the Rise of Flatulence: the Scientific Fantasy of Aristophanes' Clouds'. Omnibus (69): 23-25.



  • Heba Abd El Gawad
  • Saud Al-Ghamdi
  • Waleed Alsadeqi
  • Arthur Anderson
  • George Azzopardi
  • Jennie Bradbury
  • William Cooney
  • Maria Correas-Amador
  • Rana Daroogheh-Nokhodcheri
  • T A Fitton
  • Amr Gaber
  • Lyn Gatland
  • Michelle de Gruchy
  • Kristen Hopper
  • Emmanouil Kalkanis
  • R C Lange
  • Francis Lankester
  • Dan Lawrence
  • Mark Manuel
  • Jenny Marshall
  • Eric Olijdam
  • Louise Rayne
  • D J Rohl
  • J E Shoebridge
  • Keir Strickland)
  • Veronica Tamorri
  • Matthew Whincop 

Classics and Ancient History


Theology and Religion

  • Ben Blackwell
  • Maria Chrysovergi
  • Robert Cavin
  • Joan Crooks
  • Andrew Cunningham
  • Douglas Earl
  • Judith Fain
  • James Fowler
  • John Goodrich
  • Nijay Gupta
  • Ed Kaneen 
  • Brad Matthews
  • Sam Newington
  • Dean Pinter
  • Tyson Putthoff
  • William Telford
  • Jennifer Wilkinson