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Tomos Evans

Associate Fellow

Research Interests

John Milton | Early Modern Literature | Greek | Neo-Latin | Classical Reception | Editing | Translation

tomos.evans@sas.ac.uk

 

 

Biography

Tomos is an Early Modernist who specialises in the life and works of John Milton (1608–1674) and the reception of Greek texts in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Europe. He is working on his first monograph, Milton’s Hellenism, which comprehensively explores Milton’s intense and creative engagement with Greek texts and Hellenic scholarship throughout his poetic and political career. Tomos is co-editing with John Hale (Otago University) Milton’s Latin and Greek poems for the new, third edition of Milton’s Complete Shorter Poems in the Longman Annotated English Poets series. He has been a Visiting Fellow at the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Neo-Latin Studies in Innsbruck (2022) and a Hellenic Research Fellow at California State University, Sacramento (2023). Tomos has also been awarded the Barker Fellowship by the Durham Residential Research Library (2024).

Tomos holds a M.St. in English (1550–1700) from the University of Oxford and a MA in Classics from Birkbeck, University of London. He completed his AHRC-funded PhD at the University of Birmingham in 2023.

Research

Milton’s Hellenism explores Milton’s engagement with Greek literature, language, and culture from his student days at Cambridge through to the publication of the 1671 poems. While specific allusions to Greek texts in Milton’s work have received extensive scrutiny—especially those referring to Homer and the tragedians—there is no comprehensive overview available of the depth and breadth of Milton’s knowledge of and engagement with Greek. The scope of Milton’s Hellenism is ambitious. It investigates Milton’s encounters and interactions with Greek texts in England and Italy, ranging from the Homeric epics and fragments of the Epic Cycle through to Byzantine and Early Modern Greek texts including the Greek letters of his closest friend, Charles Diodati, and the writings of Leonard Philaras: a Greek diplomat and scholar who advocated for the liberation of Ottoman-ruled Greece and who greatly influenced Milton’s own political Philhellenism. Tomos’ doctoral thesis, “Milton’s Hellenism”, can be accessed here.

Publications

Selected Publications

  • ‘Blind Oedipus and Eyeless Dog: John Milton in Robert Creighton’s Translation of Sylvester Syropoulos (1660)’, Milton Quarterly, 55.3–4 (2021), 228–234.
  • ‘Homeric Re-Formations: Cento Poetics, Protestant Exegesis, and James Duport’s Greek Paraphrase of the Book of Job, Threnothriambos (1637)’, in Classical Reformations: Beyond Christian Humanism, Warwick Studies in Renaissance Thought and Culture, ed. by Micha Lazarus and Lucy Nicholas, forthcoming.
  • ‘Milton’s Diodatian Poetics’, Milton Studies, 67.1 (Spring 2025), forthcoming.
  • with Olivia Montepaone, The Baroque Sublime: A New Translation and Commentary of Longinus by Leo Allatius (1586–1669), Sources in Early Poetics, gen. eds. Micha Lazarus and Vladimir Brljak, forthcoming.

Selected Presentations

  • ‘Milton and the Legacy of Sixteenth-Century Greek Humanism’, Renaissance Society of America Conference, Dublin, 30 March – 2 April 2022.
  • ‘Greek Scholarship, Ancient Scholiasts, and Milton as Scholar-Poet’, The 2022 Conference on John Milton, Saint Louis University, Missouri, 20–22 June 2022. Recipient of the Kevin Donovan Award for the Best Paper by a Graduate Student.
  • ‘Scholars without Schools?’, Milton Society of America Sponsored Roundtable, ‘Milton Without Miltonists’, Modern Langauges Association Convention, San Francisco, 5–8 January 2023.
  • ‘New Contexts for Milton’s Letters to Leonard Philaras’, The Thirteenth International Milton Symposium, University of Toronto, 10–14 July 2023.
  • ‘Greek and “The Lady of Christ’s College”: John Milton’s Hellenism at Cambridge (1625–32)’, Guest Lecture at University of California, Berkeley, at the invitation of James Grantham Turner and Diego Pirillo, 7 November 2023.
  • The First English Philhellene? John Milton and Advocating Greece’s Liberation in the Seventeenth Century’, Hellenic Research Fellowship Program (HRFP) Lecture, California State University, Sacramento, 14th November 2023.

Complete Bibliography & CV