It is a long-standing tradition dating to at least the 1970s that the philologists—both students and staff—meet every Tuesday in term time for the Comparative Philology Graduate Seminar. Each term, the seminar has a different overarching topic; there are, however, certain trends.
In Michaelmas, the philologists consider a general linguistic topic and its applicability to (largely) ancient Indo-European languages; in the past, these topics included: the reconstructability of syntax; moods; metre; language contact; and many more.
In Hilary Term, the structure and history of a language or language family is dealt with. Contributions come from specialists in the field as well as those who have only recently taken it up. In the past, the languages studied have included: Old English; Faliscan; Old Irish; Tocharian; and many others.
In Trinity Term, students and staff present their Work in Progress; this usually involves MPhil and DPhil students sharing the findings of their dissertations.
The seminar takes place every Tuesday, 2.15–4pm in the Faculty of Linguistics, Philology and Phonetics (Clarendon Institute, Walton St) and is preceded by a sandwich lunch in Worcester College. For more information and in the case of any queries, please get in touch with the convenors of the seminar as specified in the announcements below.
The topic of the Comparative Philology Graduate Seminar in Hilary Term 2020 will be Hieroglyphic Luwian.
|Date||Week||Speaker & Title|
Mark Weeden (SOAS)
|4 February||3||Philomen Probert
Synchronic and Historical Phonology
|11 February||4||Jesse Lundquist
Synchronic and Historical Morphology I: the noun
Michele Bianconi & Vladimir Olivero
|10 March||8||John Penney
Varieties of Luwian, “Luwic”, and Lycian
|2019–20||The Language and Linguistics of Ancient Humour||Hieroglyphic Luwian|
|2018–19||Ancient Grammar and Linguistics||Armenian||Work in Progress|
|2017–18||Reconstructing the Syntax of Proto-Indo-European||Old English||Work in Progress|
|2016–17||Why languages are similar: contact, drift, inheritance||Tocharian||Work in Progress|
|2015–16||Origins of the Greek Verb||Old Persian||Work in Progress|
|2014–15||Participles||Old Irish||Work in Progress|
|2013–14||Moods||Gothic||Work in Progress|
|2012–13||Towards a synchronic Grammar of Proto-Indo-European||Faliscan||Work in Progress|
|2011–12||Metre in Indo-European||Middle Iranian||Work in Progress|