Prof. Michael Clarke

B.A., D. Phil.

 
researcher
 

Biography

Born Dun Laoghaire, 1966; education TCD (BA 1990), Oxford (D. Phil. 1995). My research is dominated by three linked projects: (a) studies in linguistic and cultural transfer from Graeco-Roman Antiquity to medieval vernacular literatures, especially Middle Irish; (b) comparative study of epic poetry, including the traditions of Greek, Latin, Near Eastern languages, and of medieval Irish and Germanic in their Latinate context; (c) semantic reconstruction and lexicography, esp. through the lens of cognitive linguistics. 

Research Interests

From an early fascination with mythology and ancient languages, I became a specialist in ancient Greek epic poetry, to which I added a new focus of interest in the renewal and transformation of the Classical tradition in medieval languages and literatures, especially in Irish between c. 900 and 1200 AD. With my colleagues in Galway Classics I have worked to give our research programme a particular focus on continuity and reception, with special reference to the Christian Middle Ages in general and the Insular worlds of Britain and Ireland in particular.  My own research is dominated by three linked projects: (a) studies in linguistic and cultural transfer from Graeco-Roman Antiquity to medieval vernacular literatures, especially Middle Irish; (b) comparative study of epic poetry, including the traditions of Greek, Latin, Near Eastern languages, and of medieval Irish and Germanic in their Latinate context; (c) semantic reconstruction and lexicography, esp. through the lens of cognitive linguistics.  

In the field of heroic literature I have a special interest in Middle Irish recreations of Greek mythology and pseudo-history, focussing on the largely unpublished late Middle Irish recension of Togail Troí­, the Irish rendering of the Trojan War. Among a series of article-length publications on this work, I have contributed an edition of the previously unpublished Prologue of the work, which appeared in Eriu  64 (2014). This work is analogous to, but formally quite separate from, the more origins-oriented work that I have published in Achilles Beside Gilgamesh (2019). The next challenge is to bring these research directions together in a new synthesis, which will lead (all going well) to further publications on the balance between creativity and tradition in medieval recreations of pagan mythology.

I am currently supervising PhD research on medieval recreations of the Trojan War narrative in Latin and Old Norse; on the concept of elegy in Old English poetry; on literature in Greek by Hellenistic Jewish authors, and by Late Antique poets from Egypt; and on lexical semantics in ancient Greek. I will be glad to hear from postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers interested in joining our departmental community in any fields in which I am competent to work with them.


Research Projects

  Project Start Date End Date
THE USE AND REPRESENTATION OF CLASSICAL THEMES AND IMAGERY M CLARKE 01-OCT-14 30-SEP-17
CLASSICAL & MEDIEVAL LANGUAGES MICHAEL CLARKE 107056 01-MAY-11 31-DEC-13
IRCHSS POST DOC MICHAEL CLARKE PADRAIC MORAN 01-OCT-09 30-SEP-13

Peer Reviewed Journals

  Year Publication
(2005) 'Etymology in the semantic reconstruction of early Greek words: the case of anthos'
Michael Clarke (2005) 'Etymology in the semantic reconstruction of early Greek words: the case of anthos'. Hermathena, 179 :13-38 [Details]
(1995) 'Aeschylus on mud and dust'
Michael Clarke (1995) 'Aeschylus on mud and dust'. Hermathena, 158 :7-26 [Details]
(2014) 'The extended Prologue of Togail Troi: from Adam to the wars of Troy'
Clarke, Michael (2014) 'The extended Prologue of Togail Troi: from Adam to the wars of Troy'. Eriu, 64 :23-106 [Details]
(2005) 'An ox-fronted river-god sophocles, Trachiniae 12-13'
Clarke, M (2005) 'An ox-fronted river-god sophocles, Trachiniae 12-13'. Harvard Studies In Classical Philology, Vol 102, 102 :97-112 [Details]
(2001) ''Heart-cutting talk': Homeric kertomeo and related words'
Clarke, M (2001) ''Heart-cutting talk': Homeric kertomeo and related words'. Classical Quarterly, 51 :329-338 [Details]
(2012) 'The Lore of the Monstrous Races in the Developing Text of the Irish Sex Aetates Mundi'
Michael Clarke (2012) 'The Lore of the Monstrous Races in the Developing Text of the Irish Sex Aetates Mundi'. Cambrian Medieval Celtic Studies, 63 (2):15-49 [DOI] [Details]
(2001) 'Thrice-ploughed woe: Sophocles, Antigone 859'
Clarke, M. (2001) 'Thrice-ploughed woe: Sophocles, Antigone 859'. Classical Quarterly, 51 :368-374 [Details]
(1998) 'Pinusko and its cognates: a problem in Simonides, fr. 508 PMG'
Clarke, M. (1998) 'Pinusko and its cognates: a problem in Simonides, fr. 508 PMG'. GLOTTA, 74 :135-142 [Details]
(1995) 'The wisdom of Thales and the problem of the word hieros'
Clarke, M. (1995) 'The wisdom of Thales and the problem of the word hieros'. Classical Quarterly, 45 :296-317 [Details]
(1995) 'Between lions and men: an image in the Iliad'
Clarke, M. (1995) 'Between lions and men: an image in the Iliad'. Greek, Roman And Byzantine Studies, 36 :137-159 [Details]

Books

  Year Publication
(2019) Achilles Beside Gilgamesh: Mortality and Wisdom in Early Epic Poetry.
Michael Clarke (2019) Achilles Beside Gilgamesh: Mortality and Wisdom in Early Epic Poetry. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [Details]
(1999) Flesh and Spirit in the Songs of Homer: a Study of Words and Myths.
Michael Clarke (1999) Flesh and Spirit in the Songs of Homer: a Study of Words and Myths. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [Details]

Book Chapters

  Year Publication
(2019) 'Looking for unity in a dictionary entry: a perspective from prototype theory'
Michael Clarke (2019) 'Looking for unity in a dictionary entry: a perspective from prototype theory' In: Liddell and Scott: The History, Methodology and Languages of the World's Leading Lexicon of Ancient Greek. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [Details]
(2018) 'Medieval Ireland in the wider world: new perspectives from the manuscripts'
Michael Clarke (2018) 'Medieval Ireland in the wider world: new perspectives from the manuscripts' In: Lost & Found III: Approaching Ireland's Past. Bray: Wordwell. [Details]
(2018) 'Merger and contrast between Latin and medieval Irish'
Michael Clarke (2018) 'Merger and contrast between Latin and medieval Irish' In: Codeswitching in Medieval Ireland and England. Bremen: Hempen Verlag. [Details]
(2017) 'Psalm 21 and the beasts of the Ardagh Chalice'
Michael Clarke (2017) 'Psalm 21 and the beasts of the Ardagh Chalice' In: Islands in a Global Context: Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Insular Art. Dublin: Four Courts Press. [Details]
(2016) 'International influences on the later medieval development of Togail Troi'
Michael Clarke (2016) 'International influences on the later medieval development of Togail Troi' In: Adapting Texts and Styles in a Celtic Context. Munster: Nodus. [Details]
(2015) 'The Leabhar Gabhala and Carolingian Origin Legends'
Michael Clarke (2015) 'The Leabhar Gabhala and Carolingian Origin Legends' In: Early Medieval Ireland and Europe: Chronology, Contacts, Scholarship. A Festschrift for Daibhi O Croinin. Turnhout: Brepols. [Details]
(2014) 'Demonology, allegory and translation: the Furies and the Morrígan'
Michael Clarke (2014) 'Demonology, allegory and translation: the Furies and the Morrígan' In: R. O’Connor (ed.), Classical Literature and Learning in Medieval Irish Narrative. Cambridge: D.S. Brewer. [Details]
(2014) 'Reconstructing the medieval Irish bookshelf: a case study of Fingal Ronain and the horse-eared kings'
Michael Clarke (2014) 'Reconstructing the medieval Irish bookshelf: a case study of Fingal Ronain and the horse-eared kings' In: Classical Literature and Learning in Medieval Irish Narrative. Cambridge: D.S. Brewer. [Details]
(2011) 'Introduction'
Clarke, M. (2011) 'Introduction' In: Translating Emotion. Peter Lang - International Academic Publishers. [Details]
(2011) 'The semantics of colour in the early Greek word-hoard'
Clarke, M. (2011) 'The semantics of colour in the early Greek word-hoard' In: Colours in the Ancient Mediterranean World. British Archaeological Reports. [Details]
(2011) 'Translation and transformation: a case study from medieval Irish and English'
Clarke, M. (2011) 'Translation and transformation: a case study from medieval Irish and English' In: Translating Emotion. [Details]
(2010) 'Semantics and vocabulary'
Clarke, M. (2010) 'Semantics and vocabulary' In: Blackwell's Companion to the Ancient Greek Language. Oxford University Press. [Details]
(2009) 'An Irish Achilles and a Greek Cú Chulainn'
Clarke, M. (2009) 'An Irish Achilles and a Greek Cú Chulainn' In: Ulidia II: Proceedings of the Second International Conference on the Ulster Cycle. Maynooth: An Sagart. [Details]
(2007) 'Snowy Helen and bull-faced wine: Ion and the language of poetry'
Clarke, M. (2007) 'Snowy Helen and bull-faced wine: Ion and the language of poetry' In: The World of Ion of Chios. Leiden, E.J. Brill. [Details]
(2006) 'Achilles, Cu Chulainn, Byrhtnoth: from Homer to the medieval North'
Clarke, M. (2006) 'Achilles, Cu Chulainn, Byrhtnoth: from Homer to the medieval North' In: Epic Interactions: Perspectives on Homer, Virgil and the Epic Tradition. Oxford University Press. [Details]
(2005) 'On the semantics of early Greek smiles'
Clarke, M. (2005) 'On the semantics of early Greek smiles' In: Body Language in the Greek and Roman Worlds. Duckworth. [Details]
(2004) 'Manhood and heroism'
Clarke, M. (2004) 'Manhood and heroism' In: The Cambridge Companion to Homer. Cambridge University Press. [Details]
(2004) 'An focal fileata: O Hoimear go dti­ an Winding Stair Café'
Clarke, M. (2004) 'An focal fileata: O Hoimear go dti­ an Winding Stair Café' In: Bliainiris 2003. Dublin: Cló Carbad. [Details]
(2002) 'Spartan ate at Thermopylae? Semantics and ideology at Herodotus, Histories 7.223.4'
Clarke, M. (2002) 'Spartan ate at Thermopylae? Semantics and ideology at Herodotus, Histories 7.223.4' In: Sparta Beyond the Mirage. Duckworth. [Details]
(1997) 'Gods and mountains in Greek myth and poetry'
Clarke, M. (1997) 'Gods and mountains in Greek myth and poetry' In: What is a God?. Duckworth. [Details]

Edited Books

  Year Publication
(2019)
Christopher Stray, Michael Clarke, Joshua Katz (Ed.). (2019) Liddell and Scott: The History, Methodology and Languages ot the World's Leading Lexicon of Ancient Greek Oxford: Oxford University Press. [Details]
(2011) Translating Emotion: Studies in Transformation and Renewal Between Languages.
Michael Clarke and Kathleen Shields (Ed.). (2011) Translating Emotion: Studies in Transformation and Renewal Between Languages Translating Emotion: Studies in Transformation and Renewal Between Languages. Bern: Peter Lang. [Details]
(2006) Epic Interactions: Essays on Homer, Virgil and the Epic Tradition.
Michael Clarke, Bruno Currie and R.O.A.M. Lyne (Ed.). (2006) Epic Interactions: Essays on Homer, Virgil and the Epic Tradition Epic Interactions: Essays on Homer, Virgil and the Epic Tradition. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [Details]

Other Journals

  Year Publication
(2013) 'Linguistic education and literary creativity in medieval Ireland'
Michael Clarke (2013) 'Linguistic education and literary creativity in medieval Ireland' Cahiers de l' Institut de Linguistique et des Sciences des Langues (Lausanne), 38 (1) :39-71. [DOI] [Details]

Conference Contributions

  Year Publication
(2016) Tionol, School of Celtic Studies, DIAS,
Michael Clarke (2016) A possible new source for Merugud Uilix, the medieval Irish Ulysses narrative. [Plenary Lecture], Tionol, School of Celtic Studies, DIAS, DIAS , 19-NOV-16 - 19-NOV-16. [Details]
(2016) Classics and Irish Politics 1916-2016,
Michael Clarke (2016) Primary epic and radical patriotism. [Plenary Lecture], Classics and Irish Politics 1916-2016, Royal Irish Academy , 20-JUN-16 - 20-JUN-16. [Details]
(2016) Anthologising Poetry in the Western Middle Ages,
Michael Clarke (2016) Unity and disunity in MS Bern 363. [Plenary Lecture], Anthologising Poetry in the Western Middle Ages, University of Ghent , 22-NOV-16 - 22-NOV-16. [Details]
(2017) The Book of Ui Mhaine,
Michael Clarke (2017) The poems on world-kingship of Flann Mainistrech. [Plenary Lecture], The Book of Ui Mhaine, Royal Irish Academy , 03-MAR-17 - 03-MAR-17. [Details]
(2017) Language Myths in the Middle Ages,
Michael Clarke (2017) National self-assertion and the myth of the origin of the Irish language. [Plenary Lecture], Language Myths in the Middle Ages, University of Oslo , 05-AUG-17 - 05-AUG-17. [Details]
(2019) Classical Association/FIEC Annual Conference,
Michael Clarke (2019) Interrogating genre categories in a medieval saga. [Conference Paper], Classical Association/FIEC Annual Conference, University College London , 05-JUL-19 - 05-JUL-19. [Details]
(2019) Tionol, School of Celtic Studies, DIAS,
Michael Clarke (2019) Enchennach: a new interpretation of the birdman in Togail Bruidne Da Derga. [Plenary Lecture], Tionol, School of Celtic Studies, DIAS, DIAS , 16-NOV-19 - 16-NOV-19. [Details]
(2019) Poetic Anthologising in the Medieval West,
Michael Clarke (2019) Self-invention in the preface. [Invited Oral Presentation], Poetic Anthologising in the Medieval West, St John's College, Cambridge , 05-JUL-19 - 05-JUL-19. [Details]
(2019) Irish, Welsh, Norse and Latin Metre and Rhyme, c. 600-1100,
Michael Clarke (2019) Classical metre and puzzle-solving. [Plenary Lecture], Irish, Welsh, Norse and Latin Metre and Rhyme, c. 600-1100, University of Oslo , 10-OCT-19 - 10-OCT-19. [Details]
(2019) Intentional Obscurity in Irish and Irish and Welsh Literature,
Michael Clarke (2019) Poetic language and learned interpretation in medieval book-cultures. [Plenary Lecture], Intentional Obscurity in Irish and Irish and Welsh Literature, DIAS , 24-MAY-19 - 24-MAY-19. [Details]
(2019) Celtic Studies Association of America Annual Conference,
Michael Clarke (2019) Celtic mythology on calfskin. [Keynote Address], Celtic Studies Association of America Annual Conference, Harvard Unoversity , 13-APR-19 - 13-APR-19. [Details]
(2018) Ulidia Finn 2018,
Michael Clarke (2018) Aes cumachta: a problem of interpretation. [Conference Paper], Ulidia Finn 2018, Sabhal Mar Ostaig, Skye , 03-JUL-18 - 06-JUL-18. [Details]
(2018) Writing Irish History 1918-2018: Mac Neill's Phases of Irish History after 100 years,
Michael Clarke (2018) The culture of the Big Survey Book. [Invited Lecture], Writing Irish History 1918-2018: Mac Neill's Phases of Irish History after 100 years, UCD , 30-NOV-18 - 30-NOV-18. [Details]
(2016) The pre-modern book in a global context,
M. Clarke, J. Whitman, I. Galambos (2016) Manuscripts Between Languages. [Organising Chair], The pre-modern book in a global context, Binghamton, New York , 18-NOV-16 - 19-NOV-16. [Details]
(2015) Codeswitching in the medieval classroom,
Michael Clarke (2015) Mergers and contrasts between Latin and Irish. [Invited Lecture], Codeswitching in the medieval classroom, University of Utrecht , 29-MAY-15 - 29-MAY-15. [Details]
(2015) Myth, Language and Literature from Ireland to Constantinople,
Michael Clarke (2015) When Latin meets a vernacular literature: fusion, confusion and synthesis. [Invited Lecture], Myth, Language and Literature from Ireland to Constantinople, University of Oslo , 15-NOV-15 - 17-NOV-15. [Details]
(2015) Irish Conference of Medievalists,
Michael Clarke (2015) The generic affinities of the Irish Liber Hymnorum. [National Refereed Conference Paper], Irish Conference of Medievalists, University College Dublin , 28-JUN-15. [Details]
(2015) Manuscripts Between Languages: east and west,
Michael Clarke (2015) The Irish Liber Hymnorum: an anthology of sacred verse. [Program co-chair], Manuscripts Between Languages: east and west, St Johns College, Cambridge , 07-MAY-15 - 08-MAY-15. [Details]
(2014) Tionol, School of Celtic Studies, DIAS,
Michael Clarke (2014) International influences on Togail Troi in the later Middle Ages. [Plenary Lecture], Tionol, School of Celtic Studies, DIAS, DIAS , 15-NOV-14 - 15-NOV-14. [Details]
(2014) Adapting texts and styles in a Celtic context,
Michael Clarke (2014) Reassessing the international context of the Irish Troy saga. [Invited Lecture], Adapting texts and styles in a Celtic context, University of Marburg , 25-JUL-14 - 25-JUL-15. [Details]
(2014) What is a Classic?,
Michael Clarke (2014) Translation and canonisation: the Trojan War in text and tapestry. [Plenary Lecture], What is a Classic?, Dartmouth College, New Hampshire , 26-SEP-14 - 26-SEP-14. [Details]
(2013) International workshop on vernacular literacy in medieval Europe and east Asia,
Michael Clarke (2013) Workshop on cross-disciplinary themes and funding opportunities with participants from Galway, Cambridge and Tokyo. [Program co-chair], International workshop on vernacular literacy in medieval Europe and east Asia, Classics/ CAMPS, NUI Galway , 29-NOV-13 - 29-NOV-13. [Details]
(2013) O Cleirigh Institute Seminar,
Michael Clarke (2013) Reconstructing the medieval Irish bookshelf. [Invited Lecture], O Cleirigh Institute Seminar, UCD , 08-MAR-13 - 08-MAR-13. [Details]
(2013) Bilingualism and text transmission in the middle ages,
Michael Clarke (2013) Interdisciplinsary seminar on code-switching and glossing. [Chaired Session], Bilingualism and text transmission in the middle ages, Dept of Celtic Studies, University of Utrecht , 31-MAY-13 - 31-MAY-13. [Details]
(2012) Educational Encounters and Educational Practice in Medieval Europe,
Michael Clarke (2012) The Leabhar Gabhala in its Carolingian context. [Invited Lecture], Educational Encounters and Educational Practice in Medieval Europe, St John's College/ Dept of Anglo-Saxon Norse and Celtic, Cambridge , 29-NOV-12 - 30-NOV-12. [Details]

Book Review

  Year Publication
(2018) Review of D. O Corrain, Claves Litterarum Hibernensium.
Michael Clarke (2018) Review of D. O Corrain, Claves Litterarum Hibernensium. Book Review [Details]

Encyclopedia Entry

  Year Publication
(2013) Semantic field theory.
Michael Clarke (2013) Semantic field theory. Leiden: Encyclopedia Entry [Details]
(2017) Togail Troi/Destruction of Troy.
Michael Clarke (2017) Togail Troi/Destruction of Troy. Encyclopedia Entry [Details]

Committees

  Committee Function From / To
Consultative Committee for Scriptores Celtigenae series (CCSL) advisory committee member for publication series /
Consultative Committee for the Dictionary of Medieval Latin from Celtic Sources Committee member 01-APR-16 /
Consultative Committee for the journal Studia Hibernica Member /

Consultancy

  Client Description
Boydell and Brewer publishers, Cambridge, England
Occasional expert reader for draft books submitted to the Press in Celtic Studies
Cambridge University Press
Occasional expert reader for book drafts submitted to CUP