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David Ricks graduated in classics and philosophy from Christ Church, Oxford and was awarded his doctorate by the University of London. Previously British Academy Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Birmingham, he has taught at King’s since 1989. His first book, The Shade of Homer (1989) and many of his later publications maintain an interest in the longue durée of literature in Greek. He has published Byzantine Heroic Poetry (1990) and co-edited a related volume, Digenes Akrites (1993): two further co-edited volumes, Byzantium and the Modern Greek Identity (1998) and The Making of Modern Greece (2009), explore ideologies of modern Greece. Modern Greek Writing (2003) is an anthology, and his own translations have appeared in journals and anthologies. His many essays cover a wide range of poets from Solomos, Kalvos, and Rangavis to Patrikios, Vayenas, and Ganas, and he has published widely on Cavafy.

Research interests and PhD students

  • Modern Greek poetry and short fiction
  • classical tradition
  • translation

Enquiries welcomed in relation to any topic in modern Greek literary history, or classical reception studies in relation to the modern Greek-speaking world. Current interests of research: Cavafy; religion and literature; translation. Current areas supervised are mostly in the area of twentieth-century poetry.

For more details, please see David's full research profile.


  • comparative literature and criticism
  • classical tradition
  • modern poetry

Expertise and public engagement

Modern Greek literature: recent articles and interviews in Athens Review of Books, Poietike, To Vema. Broadcasts on The History Channel and BBC Radio 3 and 4. Editorial Board, Byzantine & Modern Greek Studies.

Selected publications

The Shade of Homer: a study in modern Greek poetry (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 1989, paperback 2004)

(ed., with Paul Magdalino), Byzantium and the Modern Greek Identity (Aldershot: Ashgate 1998)

(ed., with Roderick Beaton), The Making of Modern Greece: nationalism, romanticism and the uses of the past (1797-1896) (Farnham: Ashgate 2009)

‘Cavafy’s quarrel with Tennyson’ in Leonee Ormond (ed.), The Reception of Alfred Tennyson in Europe (London: Bloomsbury 2016)

(ed., with Peter Mackridge), The British Council and Anglo-Greek Literary Interactions, 1945-1955 (Abingdon: Routledge 2018)