The Trendall Lecture

Advancing Classical Studies in Australia

The Trendall Lecture was inaugurated in 1997 and is funded through a bequest made by Professor A.D. Trendall, a Foundation Fellow of the Academy. Professor Trendall envisaged the lecture series as 'an annual lecture or lectures by a distinguished scholar on some theme associated with Classical Studies'.

The speaker alternates between an Australian and an international scholar who is selected, where possible, on the basis of their scholarly ties to Professor A.D. Trendall or to his research interests.

19th Trendall Lecture to be delivered in May 2015

The 19th Trendall Lecture will take place on Thursday 28 May 2015 from 6–8pm at the Hellenic Museum, 280 William Street, Melbourne. Professor Tyler Jo Smith, Associate Professor of Classical Art and Archaeology at the University of Virginia, USA, will present the lecture titled ‘“More Celebrated than Actually Known”: Sir John Soane's Greek Vases’. This lecture is hosted by the A.D. Trendall Research Centre for Ancient Mediterranean Studies at La Trobe University. It is a free event but please book seats by following this link.

Sir John Soane (1753–1837) launched his career as an antiquities collector with the purchase of a large red-figure vase manufactured in southern Italy during the 4th century BC. Known as the Cawdor Vase, the monumental vessel is arguably the first object among numerous Classical antiquities on show to greet visitors to Sir John Soane’s Museum at no. 13 Lincoln Inn’s Fields, London. When we think of Soane today, however, we do not readily associate him with ancient vases. Yet a number of the vases he acquired, among them Greek, South Italian, Hellenistic and Roman examples, are currently on display in his eclectic London house-museum. Many continue to occupy the exact same spots they held at the time of his death. This lecture introduces the Greek vase collection of Sir John Soane, summarizing its importance both in the past and today. It presents background about Soane, the collection and how it was acquired; information about Soane’s Grand Tour; the role of the vases for Soane as collector, and architect and  teacher; past and current research on the vases; and, finally, a detailed look at the Cawdor Vase, the largest and most significant vessel he acquired.

Previous Trendall Lectures

  • 2015: Emeritus Professor Carole Newlands, University of Colorado, USA, What makes a Roman goddess? Ovid, the empress, & female apotheosis in Rome
  • 2014: Emeritus Professor Trevor Bryce FAHA, The Gleam Through The Arch: Homer’s World Revisited
  • 2013: Professor Andrew Stewart, Individuality and Innovation in Greek Sculpture (published in the fifth issue of Humanities Australia)
  • 2012: Professor Richard Hunter FAHA, Homer and Plato
  • 2011: Professor Han Baltussen FAHA, Consoling Yourself and Others. Ancient and Modern Perspectives on Managing Grief (published in the second issue of Humanities Australia)
  • 2009: Professor Brian Bosworth FAHA, Anecdote Apophthegm and the ‘real’ Alexander (published in the second issue of Humanities Australia)
  • 2008: Simon D. Goldhill, The Audience on Stage: Rhetoric, Emotion, and Judgement in Sophoclean Theatre [.pdf 168KB]
  • 2007: Professor Majella Franzmann FAHA, Beyond the Stereotypes [.pdf 140KB]
  • 2006: Professor Barbara K Gold, How Women (re)act in Roman Love Poetry [.pdf 172KB]
  • 2005: Professor Pauline Allen FAHA, It's in the post [.pdf 96KB]
  • 2004: Dr Andrew Burnett, From Greece to Rome via Southern Italy [.pdf 88KB]
  • 2003: Emeritus Professor John Jory, Pylades, Pantomime and the Preservation of Tragedy 
  • 2002: Professor Emerita Patricia Easterling, Sophocles: The First Thousand Years
  • 2001: Emeritus Professor Graeme Clarke AO FAHA, Excavating and Interpreting the Governor's Palace, Acropolis, Jebel Khalid
  • 2000: Professor Richard Green, Comic Cuts: Snippets of Action on the Greek Comic Stage
  • 1999: Professor Alexander Cambitoglou, The Baroque Style in Magna Graecia: Some Important Representatives of Apulian Vase-Painting in the 4th Century BC
  • 1998: Dr Elizabeth Pemberton, Wealthy Corinth [.pdf 864KB]
  • 1997: Professor Michael J. Osborne, The Gadfly of Greek History [.pdf 448KB]

19th Trendall Lecture

‘“More Celebrated than Actually Known”: Sir John Soane's Greek Vases’

Professor Tyler Jo Smith

6–8pm | Thursday 28 May 2015

Hellenic Museum
280 William Street, Melbourne

This is a free event but please book seats by following this link. Download a flyer for the event here.


A D Trendall

The Academy's Classical Studies Lecture Series is funded through a bequest from Professor A.D. Trendall.
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