Conference: Visualising War: Interplay between Battle Narratives across Antiquity

June 14-15 2017, St Andrews

At this conference, researchers from different specialisations within Classics will examine dialogue between battle scenes from different genres, media and cultures across antiquity (8thc. BC-4thc. AD), probing lack of interplay as well as interactivity. Reaching beyond the traditional parameters of ancient warfare studies, we have commissioned papers that pair well-known, ‘canonical’ works with more marginal (e.g., technical, ‘foreign’, inscriptional, anecdotal) representations. Some will look at clusters of works produced within a short time of each other; others will take a more diachronic view, looking at the ways in which interplay builds up over time.

All contributors have been challenged to reflect on the ways in which we visualise and articulate different forms of interplay (e.g. borrowing, rewriting, allusion, occlusion). By combining close analysis with methodological reflection, the conference will 1) produce novel insight into already well-known battle depictions in individual works; 2) explore systematically, for the first time, the evolution of ‘the battle narrative’ in antiquity as a multi-faceted, interactive network of ideas; 3) initiate fresh dialogue on methodologies of reading interaction between different periods and art forms.

Confirmed speakers

  • Emma Buckley (Lecturer in Classics, University of St Andrews)
  • Serafina Cuomo (Reader in Roman History, University of Birkbeck)
  • Marco Formisano (Faculty Member, Literature Department, University of Ghent), with
  • Paolo Felice Sacchi, a PhD student of Dr Formisano and collaborator on one his projects
  • Lisa Hau (Lecturer in Classics, University of Glasgow)
  • Alice König (Lecturer in Latin, University of St Andrews)
  • Katharina Lorenz (Associate Professor of Classical Studies, University of Nottingham)
  • Helen Lovatt (Professor of Classics, University of Nottingham)
  • Zahra Newby (Reader in Classics, University of Warwick)
  • John Oksanish (Assistant Professor in Classics, Wake Forest University)
  • Bettine Reitz-Joosse (Assistant Professor in Latin Language and Literature, University of Groningen)
  • Andrew Riggsby (Lucy Shoe Meritt Professor of Classics and Professor of Art History, University of Texas)
  • Courtney Roby (Assistant Professor in Classics, Cornell University)
  • Nicolas Wiater (Lecturer in Classics, Univeristy of St Andrews)


A full programme is available here.


To attend the conference including the evening meal, please book via the online shop.

If you are a current postgraduate student, you may be eligible for a bursary.  Please email if you propose to attend the conference, stating which nights’ accommodation you require and if you have any special dietary requirements or access needs. Do not sign up on the online shop, we will contact you.

If you are member of the University of St Andrews and wish to attend the conference, please contact

Booking deadline: 26th May