Frances Pownall, PhD (Toronto 1993), MA (UBC 1987), BA (Hon.) (McGill 1985).

Professor, ART History, Classics, & Religion
Honors Adviser (Classics), ART History, Classics, & Religion


Professor, ART History, Classics, & Religion
(780) 492-2630
2-49 Tory (H.M.) Building
11211 Saskatchewan Drive NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2H4

Honors Adviser (Classics), ART History, Classics, & Religion
(780) 492-2630



I have published widely on Greek historiography (particularly the fourth century and the Hellenistic period), the source tradition on Macedonia and the Successors, and the historiographical tradition of Sicily and the Greek West. I have written updated editions, translations, and historical commentaries for a number of important fragmentary historians (including Hecataeus, Hellanicus, Duris, Aristobulus, Eratosthenes, and Philistus) for Brill’s New Jacoby (2006–). My books include Lessons From the Past: The Moral Use of History in Fourth-Century Prose (Michigan 2004), Ancient Macedonians in the Greek and Roman Sources (co-edited with T. Howe, Swansea 2018), Lexicon of Argead Macedonia (co-edited with W. Heckel, J. Heinrichs, and S. Müller, Berlin 2020), and Affective Relations & Personal Bonds in Hellenistic Antiquity (co-edited with E.M. Anson and M. D’Agostini, Oxford 2020). I am currently the Honors Adviser (Classics) and have held the offices of Associate Chair (Undergraduate Studies) and Director of Classics. I have served on numerous Department and Faculty committees, including the Arts Faculty Evaluation Committee, Arts Research Committee, Arts Executive Committee, and Arts Teaching Awards Committee.


My research focuses upon Greek historiography of the late Classical and early Hellenistic periods. My earlier projects involved teasing out how the tension between intellectual culture and Athenian democratic ideals underpins much of the historical literature of the fifth and fourth centuries, which was written by and for the elite. I have now moved into questions of power and authority, focusing particularly upon the ways in which autocratic rulers (kings and tyrants from the Greek West through Philip and Alexander to the Hellenistic Successors) legitimized and justified their rule. I am also involved in the translation and full commentary of a number of fragmentary Greek historians in Brill’s New Jacoby, a modern updating and extension of F. Jacoby’s magisterial 15-volume compilation of the fragments of the Greek historians, published on-line. My work on the Brill’s New Jacoby project has awakened a previously latent interest in the problematic sources for Philip and Alexander of Macedon, and I am currently in the early planning stages of a new major project, a translation and commentary on Book 16 of the Bibliotheke of Diodorus Siculus, the only extant continuous historical narrative of the reign of Philip II of Macedon.


Teaching Areas:

  • Greek History
  • History of the Ancient World
  • Greek language and literature
  • Greek historiography (Archaic through Hellenistic)
  • Philip and Alexander of Macedon
  • The Hellenistic World


CLASS 110 - The Ancient World

World history from the beginning of written records to the sixth century AD. The ancient history of the Mediterranean world, with particular emphasis on Egypt, Greece and Rome and compares developments in civilization in these areas with those in Persia, India and China.

Fall Term 2021 Fall Term 2022
CLASS 280 - Introduction to Ancient Greek History

Not open to students with credit in any two of CLASS 371, 372, and 373.

Fall Term 2021 Fall Term 2022
CLASS 330 - From Alexander the Great to Cleopatra: The Hellenistic World

The history of the Hellenistic world from Alexander the Great to the defeat of Antony and Cleopatra at the Battle of Actium. Special emphasis will be placed upon Alexander's successors and the development of the Hellenistic kingdoms.

Winter Term 2023
CLASS 481 - Topics in Greek History

Prerequisite: Any CLASS course at the 200 level or above or consent of Department. May be repeated for credit when course content differs.

Winter Term 2022
CLASS 503 - Introduction to Classics as a Discipline for Honours Students

Winter Term 2023
CLASS 522 - Studies in Ancient History

Winter Term 2022
GREEK 302 - Intermediate Greek II

Selections from Greek poetry and prose. Prerequisite: GREEK 301 or consent of Department.

Winter Term 2022 Winter Term 2023

Browse more courses taught by Frances Pownall


Affective Relations and Personal Bonds in Hellenistic Antiquity: Studies in honor of Elizabeth D. Carney
Author(s): Monica D'Agostini, Edward M. Anson; Frances Pownall (editors)
Publication Date: 11/1/2020
Publication: Oxford
External Link:
Lexicon of Argead Macedonia
Author(s): Waldemar Heckel, Johannes Heinrichs, Sabine Müller, and Frances Pownall
Publication Date: 6/2/2020
Publication: Berlin
External Link:
Ancient Macedonians in the Greek and Roman Sources: From History to Historiography
Author(s): Tim Howe, Frances Pownall
Publication Date: 12/8/2018
Publication: Swansea
External Link:
Lessons From the Past
Author(s): Frances Pownall
Publication Date: 2004
External Link: