Dennis Trout
Professor of Ancient Mediterranean Studies; Department Chair
112B Swallow Hall

At a certain point patterns emerge. I have lately begun to think of myself as a mixed media collage artist whose work over three decades has been dedicated to figuring the cultures of the late antique and early medieval western Mediterranean. Undergraduate work in history, anthropology, and art history; an MA in ancient history; a PhD in the same but with most course work in classics and religion (and throughout a series of inspiring teachers) seems to fit. Graduate school fascination with Augustine at Milan and Cassiciacum and Paulinus at Nola made clear the need for a multi-media sensibility. Both led on to Damasus and epigraphic poetry and epigraphic poetry leads back out to later papal Rome and the Visigothic Iberia of Isidore of Seville and Eugenius of Toledo. And now a deeper background beckons as well. The new cognitive science of religion suggests ways of linking the cult of the saints to certain forces that shaped archaic and classical lifeways that we call religious.

Select Awards

2019-20: Archie K. Davis Fellowship; National Humanities Center, North Carolina

2019: Arthur and Joyce Gordon Fellowship; Center for Epigraphical and Palaeographical Study, Ohio State

2017: Visiting Scholar; American Academy in Rome

2014-15: Loeb Classical Library Foundation Fellowship

2013: Visiting Scholar American Academy in Rome

2007-08: University of Missouri Faculty Council Award for Research Leave

2002-03: National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship for University Teachers

1992-93: Andrew W. Mellon Faculty Fellowship in Classics, Harvard University

1990: National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminar; Columbia University (Alan Cameron)


Select and Recent Publications


The Lives of Saint Constantina: Introduction, Texts, Translations, and Commentary. Oxford University Press, 2020. Coauthored with Marco Conti and Virginia Burrus

Damasus of Rome: The Epigraphic Poetry. Introduction, Texts, Translations, and Commentary. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015.

Paulinus of Nola: Life, Letters, and Poems. The Transformation of the Classical Heritage XXVII. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999

Articles and Chapters

“Augustine and the Classical Latin Literary Tradition.” In Augustine and Tradition: Influences Contexts Legacy. Ed. David G. Hunter and Jonathan P. Yates, 204-29. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 2021.

“(Re)Founding Christian Rome: The Honorian Project of the Early Seventh Century.” In Urban Developments of Late Antique and Medieval Rome: Revising the Narrative of Renewal. Ed. Gregor Kalas and Ann van Dijk, 149-75. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2021.

Sagax animo: Jonas of Bobbio and the Verse Epitaph of Pope Honorius.” Early Medieval Europe 29 (2021): 161-80.

Poets and Readers in Seventh-Century Rome: Pope Honorius, Lucretius, and the Doors of St. Peter’s.” Traditio: Studies in Ancient and Medieval History, Thought, and Religion 75, 39-85. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020.

“Peter Beyond Rome: Achilleus of Spoleto, Neon of Ravenna, and the Epigramma Longum.” In Leadership and Community in Late Antiquity: Essays in Honour of Raymond Van Dam. Cultural Encounters in Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages 26. Ed. Young Richard Kim and A.E.T. McLaughlin, 141-60. Turnout: Brepols, 2020.

ICUR 8.20757: Poetry and Ambition at S. Agnese fuori le mura.” In Fide non Ficta: Essays in Honor of Paul B. Harvey. Jr. Biblioteca di Athenaeum 64. Ed. John D. Muccigrosso and Celia E. Schultz, 147-63. Bari: Edipuglia, 2020.

 “Pictures with Words: Reading the Apse Mosaic of S. Agnese f.l.m. (Rome).” Studies in Iconography 40 (2019): 1-26. 





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