In Memoriam: Theodore V. Buttrey, Jr.

(Written by Sarah E. Cox, and shared with the SCS by Ofelia N. Salgado-Buttrey)

Theodore V. Buttrey, Jr.

29 December 1929 – 9 January 2018

Renowned educator, numismatist and classicist, Theodore V. (“Ted”) Buttrey, Jr., died on January 9, 2018, eleven days after his 88th birthday.  Born in Havre, Montana, as a child he attended the Peacock Military Academy in San Antonio, Texas, where he first encountered the coins of Mexico, a life-long interest.  His secondary education was at the Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire, after which he entered Princeton University, graduating magna cum laude in 1950 in Classics.  In the summer of 1952, he participated in the inaugural Summer Seminar in Numismatics conducted by the American Numismatic Society, an experience that may well have been pivotal in setting the later course of his career.  In 1953, still at Princeton, he completed his Ph.D. thesis on a numismatic subject, “Studies in the Coinage of Marc Anthony,” a chapter of which was condensed and published as “Thea Neotera on Coins of Antony and Cleopatra,” ANS Museum Notes 6 (1954), pp. 95-109.  There followed a Fulbright scholarship to study in Rome.

In 1954 Ted joined the faculty of Yale University, where he remained for a decade, first as an instructor and then as assistant professor in the Department of Classical Studies; he also served as curator of the numismatic collection and, from 1962 to 1964, as assistant professor in the Department of Medieval Studies.  In 1964 he moved to the University of Michigan, where he remained until his retirement in 1985, starting as associate professor of Greek and Latin and rising to full professor in 1968.  From 1969 to 1971 he also served as Director of the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology.  After retiring from Michigan he moved to the University of Cambridge, to become an Affiliated Lecturer in the Faculty of Classics of Clare Hall College, where he had previously been a Visiting Fellow and Resident Member.  In addition, from 1988 to 1991 he served as Keeper of Coins and Medals at the Fitzwilliam Museum, and from 2008 until his death held the post of Honorary Keeper of Coins.  Ted was a life member of the SCS (the APA at that time) and the AIA, as well as a member of the Royal Numismatic Society and the Société Française de Numismatique, and he received a host of awards and honors, including the Medal of the Royal Numismatic Society, the Huntington Medal of the ANS, the medal of the Norwegian Numismatic Society, and the Wolfgang Hahn Medal of the Institut für Numismatik und Geldgeschichte of Vienna University.

Ted’s publications, both books and articles, totaled well over 100.  Most were concerned with topics in numismatics, especially antiquity, where the broad span of his interests encompassed Athenian coins, Republican denarii, Flavian coins, the coinage of Pescennius Niger, and even calculating ancient coin production.  The modern era of numismatics also consumed much of his time, and a challenge to the authenticity of a collector’s gold bars of the Spanish-American southwest even got his name in the newspapers.  But he never forsook his devotion to Classics, as evidenced by his early article, “Accident and Design in Euripides’ Medea,” published in AJP in 1958, while he was at Yale, and to an even greater extent by the television programs he produced for Michigan Media on Homer, Greek drama and theatre, Herodotus, Suetonius, and other classical subjects.  As recently as 2015, in conversations at the International Numismatic Congress in Taormina, he discussed plans for a book on the role of fate in Oedipus Rex, arguing against the idea of unshakeable destiny.

While never thought of as one who suffered fools gladly, he was a charismatic teacher and approachable mentor, encouraging of younger scholars, as well as a witty and engaging raconteur.  He will be greatly missed, but he leaves an immense legacy for his students, colleagues, and family to cherish and spread.

---

(Photo: "Candle" by Shawn Carpenter, licensed under CC BY 2.0)   


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If you use Twitter and intend to share comments about the upcoming joint annual meeting in Chicago, please use the hashtag

#aiaapa

We have consulted with our colleagues at the AIA, and they have agreed to recommend its use to their members as well.  This hashtag has been in use for at least the last two joint meetings, and we hope that Twitter users will adopt it this year as well.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Thu, 12/12/2013 - 10:33am by Adam Blistein.

Read a review of Jürgen Leonhardt's Latin: Story of a World Language (Harvard University Press) in this week's Chronicle of Higher Education.

View full article. | Posted in Book Reviews on Thu, 12/12/2013 - 9:35am by Information Architect.

The American Philological Association (APA) will present the following awards at the Plenary Session of its 145th Annual Meeting in Chicago.  Click on the name of each award winner to read the citation for his or her award.

President's Award (honors an individual, group, or organization outside of the Classics profession that has made significant contributions to advancing public appreciation and awareness of Classical antiquity)

Daniel Mendelsohn

Distinguished Service Awards (awarded occasionally for extraordinary service to the profession of classics and the American Philological Association)

Ladislaus J. Bolchazy

Charles J. Goodwin Award of Merit (for an outstanding contribution to classical scholarship published by a member of the Association within the preceding three years)

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Sun, 12/08/2013 - 10:04pm by Adam Blistein.

Princeton University Press has created an app of the Barrington Atlas of the Ancient World sponsored by the APA and edited by Richard J. A. Talbert.  The app is compatible with the iPad 2 and above and is available from iTunes at a price of $19.99.  The app contains all the content of the print edition of the Atlas and thus makes this valuable reference work more portable and affordable.  Visit the Press' web site for a full description of the app and a link to the iTunes store.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Thu, 12/05/2013 - 6:07pm by Adam Blistein.

The APA's hard-working Local Arrangements Committee, chaired by Board member Jonathan Mark Hall, has produced a wonderful guide (PDF) to Chicago for members planning to attend the upcoming annual meeting there. 

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Tue, 12/03/2013 - 2:34pm by Adam Blistein.

Many thanks to Bob Kaster for sharing this video (http://cdnapi.kaltura.com/index.php/extwidget/openGraph/wid/1_c15snnrq)of excerpts from conversations his colleague Brooke Holmes had with some alumni and alumnae last spring: they represent a wide range of ages and career paths, but they're all united by their love for Classics and their gratitude for the world it opened to them.

View full article. | Posted in General Announcements on Sun, 11/24/2013 - 9:45am by .

Following is the schedule for the APA Office for the next two months.  Our regular hours are 8:45 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday.

November 28-December 1, 2013                   Office Closed (Thanksgiving Holiday)
December 24-26, 2013                                   Office Closed (Christmas Holiday)
December 27 and 30, 2013                             Office Open (see Note A)
December 28-29, 2013                                   Office Closed
December 31, 2013-January 6, 2014             Office Closed (see Note B)
January 7-10, 2014                                         Office Open (see Note C)
January 11-12, 2014                                       Office Closed
January 13, 2014                                            Normal Office Operations Resume
January 20, 2014                                            Office Closed (Martin Luther King Day)

Note A:  The building where our offices are located at the University of Pennsylvania (220 S. 40th Street) will be locked, and we will not receive U.S. mail during this period.  Courier services may be able to make deliveries, but the best ways of communicating with us will be via telephone and e-mail.

Note B:  All staff will be at the annual meeting in Chicago or traveling between Philadelphia and Chicago.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Thu, 11/21/2013 - 10:10am by Adam Blistein.
The Committee on Ancient and Modern Performance (CAMP) of the American Philological Association invites proposals for a panel to be held under the Committee’s sponsorship at the 146th Annual Meeting of the APA (New Orleans, January 8-11, 2015).  Submissions, which should not exceed 500 words in length, should include:
 
(1)  the title of the proposed panel;
(2)  a general outline of the proposed topic;
(3)  a brief explanation of the topic's relevant to the performance of ancient or modern drama;
(4)  and, where relevant, a brief bibliography.

APA panels usually comprise either four 20-minute papers in a two-hour session, or four 20-minute papers plus short introduction and response in a

two-and-a-half-hour session.  Panel proposals should be sent via e-mail to Amy R. Cohen, Chair of the Committee on Ancient and Modern Performance (acohen@randolphcollege.edu), by December 30, 2013 (note extended deadline).
 
It should be noted that selection and sponsorship of a panel topic by the Committee does not in itself guarantee final acceptance of the panel by the
APA Program Committee.  Note that the organizer of any panel selected by the Committee will have to be a fully paid-up member of the APA for 2014.
View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Thu, 11/21/2013 - 9:14am by Adam Blistein.

I want to provide an update on the steps we are taking to implement the change in the name of the  Association that the members approved this summer.  With the help of incoming President Kathryn Gutzwiller, I formed an ad hoc committee consisting of members who represent various communities in our society to consider issues such as communicating with audiences outside the membership and guiding the graphic designer who is creating a new logo for us.

As part of this process we have learned that taking the legal steps required to change our name is the easiest task ahead of us.  We are incorporated in Delaware, and that state requires only that we file a simple form and pay a modest fee.  Legally we will become the Society for Classical Studies as soon as we make that filing.  Before we take that step, we want to have a logo ready and decide how the new name and its “subtitle” (founded in 1869 as the American Philological Association) will appear on our printed and electronic publications.  We also want to identify and prepare communications for all the audiences (both internal and external) who need to know about our change.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 11/18/2013 - 1:50pm by Adam Blistein.

California State University Long Beach’s Classics program would like to announce that we are making our upper division Latin reading classes available to students via the web. These are not “online” classes; they are classes conducted with students in real time. People who are interested in joining our classes would attend class sessions virtually through a web interface, and thus anyone who wants to participate would have to be online during the specific class time.

For Spring semester 2014, we are offering two reading courses, Cicero and Caesar. The semester begins on Tuesday, January 21, and concludes on Friday, May 23, with Spring Break during the week of March 21. Each class meets three hours per week and earns a student 3 semester units. The prerequisite for each class is intermediate Latin; i.e., students will be expected to have facility with noun and verb morphology and an introductory knowledge of Latin grammatical constructions.

View full article. | Posted in General Announcements on Mon, 11/18/2013 - 10:08am by .

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