Classics > People > Faculty Members > Tosca Lynch

Dr Tosca Lynch
BA, BMus, MPhil, PhD (St And)


Junior Research Fellow in Classics, Jesus College
Member, Faculty of Classics


Jesus College
Turl Street


Dr Tosca Lynch


After gaining a BMus in Classical Piano, a BA and an MPhil in Ancient Philosophy in Italy, I undertook doctoral research in Classics at the University of St Andrews under the supervision of Prof. Stephen Halliwell. From 2013 to 2015 I worked as a Postdoctoral Associate at the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna, and I have joined Jesus College as a Junior Research Fellow in 2016.

Research Keywords:

Ancient Greek Music; Rhythmics and metre; Plato's musical thought and aesthetics; ancient education; music in Euripidean tragedy

Research Interests:

My main research field is ancient Greek music, with a special interest in the Athenian debate on mousiké. The research questions I pursued in recent years fall into three main areas:

1) Ancient Greek literature and philosophy, with special focus on Plato's musical aesthetics and its educational, psychological and ethical implications, and on Euripides' reflections on the ethical and aesthetic power of music.
2) Technical aspects of ancient musical performances (harmoníai, instruments, etc.) and their cultural significance; the Greek musical documents.
3) Ancient Rhythmics and Metre, especially Aristoxenus' Elementa rhythmica and the rhythmical and metrical theories discussed in Aristides Quintilianus' De Musica.

Currently I am in the final stages of completing my monograph on Plato and music (provisionally entitled 'Training the soul in excellence: Musical Theory and Practice in Plato's Dialogues') and I am also co-editing with Prof. Eleonora Rocconi (University of Pavia–Cremona) the Blackwell Companion to Ancient Greek and Roman Music. My next research project will explore the importance of music in Euripidean tragedy from a variety of angles, ranging from technical questions to broader cultural and literary aspects.

Full Publications:

Click here for a downloadable pdf of full publications:  Lynch-publications-Oct-2016.pdf

Selected Publications:

A Companion to Ancient Greek and Roman Music, co-edited with Eleonora Rocconi, (Hoboken: Wiley-Blackwell forthcoming ).

'Arsis and Thesis in Ancient Rhythmics and Metrics: A New Approach', Classical Quarterly, (forthcoming 2017).

'The Symphony of Temperance in Republic 4: Musical Imagery and Practical Models', Greek and Roman Musical Studies, Vol: 5.1, (forthcoming 2017).

'Why are only the Dorian and Phrygian harmoniai accepted in Plato's Kallipolis? Lyre vs. Aulos', in Tra lyra e aulos. Tradizioni musicali e generi poetici, Bravi, L., Lomiento, L., Meriani, A. and Pace, G. (eds.), (Pisa–Bari 2016), 267-284.

'A Sophist ''in disguise'': a reconstruction of Damon of Oa and his role in Plato's Dialogues', Études Platoniciennes, Vol: 10, (2013), Website: