University of Birmingham Staff Papers: Papers of George Thomson

Scope and Content

14 volumes and 1 envelope of notes taken by Thomson relating to Ancient Greek Language and Literature. Subjects include: places and their significance in Ancient Greece; mythology; Homeric poems; Greek Tragedy; early Greek Philosophy; Argos and the Errynyes; Greek kinship; Dionysus.

Administrative / Biographical History

George Thomson, 1903-1987, studied at King's College Cambridge graduating to teach Greek through the medium of modern Irish. He retained an interest in Irish Studies throughout his life. He was Professor at Greek at University of Birmingham, 1937-1970. During this time his book of the Greek Language was published. One of his objectives was to make Greek available at University to whoever wished to acquire it. It took a number of years to develop a new approach with the active participation of students and to put it into book form. Thomson also translated a number of Greek plays for performance. Thomson was a colleague of Nikolai Bachtin who also taught Classics and Linguistics at Birmingham, 1938-1950.

Reference: Deposit information.

For further reading about the University of Birmingham see: Eric Ives, Diane Drummond, Leonard Schwarz The First Civic University: Birmingham 1880-1980 An Introductory History ( The University of University of Birmingham Press. 2000 ).


The volumes were numbered by Thomson 1-11 with 4 volumes un-numbered.

Access Information

Open. Access to all registered researchers.

Acquisition Information

This collection was deposited by Professor Thomson's widow.

Other Finding Aids

Please see full catalogue for more information.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the University Archivist, Special Collections. Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Special Collections will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.


Further deposits are not expected.

Related Material

University of Birmingham Information Services, Special Collections Department also holds the archives of the University of Birmingham and archives of other former staff, officials and students. These include the papers of Nikolai Bachtin (GB 150 US05), a colleague of Thomson.