About

‘To make the ancients speak, we must feed them with our own blood’

Wilamowitz

Welcome to the Philological Crocodile. I originally put this blog together in order to try and take part in some of the (occasionally interesting) discussions that occupy #ClassicsTwitter and other online spaces. However, it quickly became apparent that the Classics themselves were in danger of being swamped in “the discourse”.


This is a blog, then, that tries as much as possible to put the Classics first and foremost: Its focus is unapologetically philological. It is not for everyone. It does not pretend to be for everyone. This is where the ancient world bites back.

“Philology vs the Bugmen” Artist unknown

A Note on Translations

As a general rule of thumb, translations from Greek, Latin, Sanskrit, Avestan, Hittite and the modern vernaculars (at least French, German, Italian, and Greek) are done by me. Where published translations are used the translator and edition will be credited. Usually in a footnote.

I sometimes aim at transparency, sometimes artistry. There are no overriding principles and translations are made on a post-by-post basis. I can only apologise for the pervasive clunkiness. I do not at all mind reuse of my translations, but wonder why anyone would want to do so.

Greek and Latin texts are taken from Perseus Tufts and The Latin Library respectively.

Sample Pieces