Dr Matthew Hosty

Academic Background

I took my undergraduate degree in Classics at St John’s College, Oxford. This was followed by an MSt and DPhil, also at Oxford: my master’s dissertation was on ordering and organisation in the Homeric Hymns, supervised by Bruno Currie, while my doctoral thesis was an edition with commentary of the Batrachomyomachia (‘War of the Frogs and Mice’), supervised by Adrian Kelly. I then spent three years as a Lecturer in Classics, at Jesus College (2013-15) and Wadham College (2015-16), before taking up my Junior Research Fellowship at Merton in October 2016.

Research Interests

I am interested in the tradition of ancient parody and pastiche – that is, the ways in which ancient Greek and Latin texts imitate other works for comic effect. This arose from my study of the Batrachomyomachia, a Hellenistic Greek poem which borrows the style and language of Homer’s Iliad to tell a smaller and more playful story. My edition of that poem, an expanded and augmented version of my doctoral thesis, is in the process of publication with OUP, and I am now working more generally on parodic strategies in Classical literature. I am also interested in archaic and Hellenistic epic more generally, in textual criticism and palaeography, and in Greek metre.

Research Keywords

Parody, intertextuality, Batrachomyomachia, Homer, epic, textual criticism, Hellenistic poetry, mice


Greek and Latin Literature for Mods and Greats, especially early Greek hexameter and Hellenistic poetry.


Selected Publications:

Book: The Batrachomyomachia: textual edition and commentary (Oxford University Press, forthcoming)

Review: Joel Christensen and Erik Robinson, The Homeric Battle of the Frogs and Mice (CR 68.2, 2018, forthcoming)

Review: Maureen Alden, Para-Narratives in the Odyssey (BMCR 2018.03.51)

Article: ‘Schrödinger’s Mouse: liminality and the λίμνη in the Batrachomyomachia’, JHS 137 (2017), pp. 135-41

Conference paper: ‘Build a better mousetrap: the Batrachomyomachia vs Callimachus’, Casting Off Shadows: Hellenistic Poetry beyond Callimachean Aesthetics, Faculty of Classics, University of Cambridge (2nd Sept. 2016)

Encyclopedia entry: ‘Anonymous: The Battle of the Frogs and the Mice’, The Literary Encyclopedia (first published Aug. 2016)

Article: ‘Sing, M(o)use: animal wars in the ancient world’, Omnibus 68 (2014), pp. 30-31

Article: ‘The Mice of Ithaca: Homeric Models in the Batrachomyomachia’, Mnemosyne 67 (2014), pp. 1008-13

Conference paper: ‘Response: Byzantine Manuscripts of the Batrachomyomachia and Constructions of Textuality’, Postclassicisms, Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, University of Oxford (29th June 2014)

Conference paper: ‘Batrachomyomachia 67-97’, commentary workshop on Greek and Latin epic, Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, University of Oxford (22nd Mar. 2014)

Seminar paper: ‘A Brief History of the Mouse Empire: warrior mice in the ancient world’, Postgraduate Interdisciplinary Classics Seminar Series, Trinity College Dublin (29th Oct. 2012)

Seminar paper: ‘Achilles and the Mouse: Parody Ancient and Modern’, Graduate Interdisciplinary Seminar Series, St John’s College, University of Oxford (7th June 2011)

Seminar paper: ‘παρῳδοῖς χρησόμεσθ’ αἰνίγμασιν: the problem of ancient parody’, Graduate Work-in-Progress Seminar, Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, University of Oxford (11th Mar. 2011)

Seminar paper: ‘Odyssey xxiv.412-548’, Professorial Seminar in Ancient Greek Literature, Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, University of Oxford (30th Nov. 2009)