A young student named Roger Ascham attended Smith’s first lecture as Regius Professor of Civil Law. After hearing Smith’s impassioned address, he too became a great humanist scholar, joining Smith and Cheke’s intellectual circle and loyally supporting their cause when they proposed their radical new pronunciation of Greek. He and Smith shared a passion for ancient Greek authors, and both scholars annotated their books thoroughly. This annotated copy by Ascham of Dionysius’ critical work demonstrates a humanist scholar and teacher’s approach to the classics. In the final year of his life, he left an important note on the title page that praised András Dudith’s Latin translation of the Greek text: ‘Here is this book, which in my opinion is the sum of teaching, [in] great diligence, [and] in most serious judgment – without which the Greek of Thucydides cannot rightly and easily be understood. R. Ascham. 1568. 7th of June 1568. In my London house.’ His marginalia includes comments on the difficulty or simplicity of certain passages, and underlining of those passages he deemed to be of most importance.
Author: Dionysius of Halicarnassus
Title: De Thucydidis historia judicium [On Thucydides] (Venice, 1560)
Shelfmark: C.9.15(1) (catalogue record)