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ASCS Prizes and Awards


Greek and Latin Unseen Translation Competition

This annual Competition was introduced in 2007. It is open to second and third year language students in Australian and New Zealand universities. It involves a 45-minute unseen test in October. Entries are to be made by academic staff teaching relevant Greek and Latin classes. There is a prize of AUD$250 for the best entry in each language.

2020 Competition

Patrick Ryan (USyd.)
Honourable Mention: Isaac Bennett-Smith (VUW) 

Patrick Ryan (USyd.)
Honourable Mentions: Isaac Bennett-Smith (VUW), Timothy Livingstone (USyd.)  

Co-ordinator: Estelle Strazdins (Qld) 
Judges: Elizabeth Minchin (ANU) (Greek) and Anne Rogerson (USyd.) (Latin) 

2019 Competition

Winner: Liam Maldoni (ANU)
Honourable Mentions: Emily Kerrison (Sydney), Patrick Ryan (Sydney) and Karl Zelesco (Melbourne)

Winner: Clare Pryor (Sydney)
Commendation: Patrick Ryan (Sydney)
Honourable Mentions: Alexander Frisina (Sydney), Tim Livingstone (Sydney), Mark Rottery (Sydney)

Co-ordinator: Amelia Brown (Queensland)
Judges: John Davidson (VUW) (Greek) and Jane Bellemore (Newcastle) (Latin)

Past competitions

Past passages:

2018 Greek | 2018 Latin
2017 Greek | 2017 Latin
2016 Greek | 2016 Latin
2015 Greek | 2015 Latin
2014 Greek | 2014 Latin
2013 Greek | 2013 Latin
2012 Greek | 2012 Latin
2011 Greek | 2011 Latin
2010 Greek | 2010 Latin
2009 Greek | 2009 Latin

Past prize winners

Reports: 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2007–2012


Douglas Kelly Australian Essay Competition

Doug Kelly(Formerly the ASCS Australian Essay Competition)

This annual Competition, which has been running since 1990, is open to undergraduate students in Australian universities. The essay submitted may be a revised version of an essay, tutorial paper or seminar paper by a student enrolled in a first, second or third year course. The essay may be on any aspect of Classical Studies (that is, the languages, history, thought and archaeology of the Ancient World). The length should be between 2000 and 3000 words, and the entry should be submitted through the ASCS Representative in each Australian university. The closing date for entries is usually towards the end of November each year. The first prize is currently $500, and there are up to two prizes of $100 each for “runner-up” entries. In 2015 the competition was renamed in honour of longtime ASCS member Douglas Kelly.

A named prize should encourage curiosity about the person whose name it bears. Douglas Kelly (24 April 1941 – 15 December 2015) was a notable scholar in Classics and Ancient History who served both the discipline and the Society over many years with surpassing generosity of time and professional expertise (indeed he was elected ASCS President from 1993 – 1998). He studied first in New Zealand before going on to Cambridge (PhD 1975 on ‘Sources and interpretations of Spartan history in the reigns of Agesilaus II, Archidamus III, and Agis III’), and then took up university positions in Australia, first in Sydney at Macquarie University and subsequently in Canberra at the Australian National University. He was renowned as an inspirational teacher and supervisor, who dedicated innumerable hours to supporting students fortunate enough to work with him: his dedicated attention to detail was the stuff of legend, his breadth of knowledge acknowledged by all. He inspired respect and affection in equal proportion within the Australasian community of Classicists and Ancient Historians. It is hoped that the title of the ASCS Douglas Kelly Australian Essay Prize will encourage the winners from year to year to enquire further about the ‘eponymous hero’ and to discover his record of accomplishments that is so highly regarded by those who knew him. 

2020 Competition

Winner: Patrick Ryan (USyd.): Respexit in aethera. The Heroism of Capaneus in Thebaid

Phoebe Leggett (Melbourne): Does Diomedes Violate the Laws of xenia in Iliad Book 6? 
Timothy Livingstone (USyd.): Landscapes of Change: Metamorphosis and Liminal Landscapes in Ovid’s Metamorphoses XI

Coordinator: Peter Davis (Adelaide)
Judges: Michael Champion (ACU) and Graeme Miles (Tasmania) 

2019 Competition

Winner: Emily Kerrison (Sydney): Panhellenic preoccupations – the art of poetic scope in Pindar’s Paeans

Jennifer Oliveri (Macquarie): The argument on Platonic Love in Plato’s Symposium
Clare Pryor (Sydney): “My sons are spent. My line has ended”: The Characterisation of Mezentius in Virgil’s Aeneid

Coordinator: Peter Davis (Adelaide)
Judges: Michael Champion (ACU) and Graeme Miles (Tasmania)

Past competitions


John Barsby New Zealand Essay Competition

This annual Competition was initiated by the Classical Association of Otago in 2002 and named in honour of John Barsby, the Professor (now retired) of Classics at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand. In 2009, ASCS assumed responsibility for the funding of the prizes, which currently are AUD$350 for first place and AUD$150 for second place.

2020 Competition

Winner: Veronica Pot (VUW): Zenobia in Victorian Art 

Runner-up (shared):
Erin Little (VUW): A Man’s World: Depictions of Powerful Women in Ancient Literature
Catherine Norman (VUW): Repairing the oikos: burial rites in Aeschylus’ Choephori and Sophocles’ Electra 

Co-ordinator: Babette Puetz (VUW)
Judges: 1st round: Pat Wheatley (Otago) and 2nd round: Anastasia Bakogianni (Massey) and Dougal Blyth (Auckland)

2019 Competition

Winner: Anuja Mitra (Auckland): ‘To Emulate and to Avoid: Leadership Lessons in Book One of Livy’s Ab Urbe Condita

Runner-up: Ana Gaskill (Wellington): ‘Gaster in the Odyssey’

Judges: 1st reader: Mark Masterson (Wellington) and 2nd reader: Gary Morrison (Canterbury)
Co-ordinator: Patrick O’Sullivan (Canterbury)

Past competitions

Past winners


OPTIMA (“Outstanding Postgraduate Talk In a Meeting of ASCS”)

This annual Award, introduced at ASCS 31 (2010) in Perth, is aimed at rewarding the outstanding postgraduate presentations at the ASCS annual conference. First prize for the Award is AUD$500, with up to two runner-up prizes of AUD$100 each.

Postgraduate students planning to enter the OPTIMA prize should note the following:

  • The written version of the presentation you submit is important because first impressions are formed by it – and these impressions count a lot in the initial judgment of the committee. The written version also allows for a far less subjective judgement as all the judges read the written versions but they cannot all hear the oral presentations.
  • There is no ‘marking schedule’ and no ‘points-weighting’ applied to any specific aspect of the paper, whether it is the written paper or the oral presentation or question-time.
  • The combination of written and oral presentation is judged inclusively. A good written version of the paper and then a good presentation (and question session) will go a long way towards success.
  • Given the strength of the competition, being good in only one area (written/oral/question-time) is unlikely to win the competition.

2021 Competition

Tegan Gleeson (UTas): ‘Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep’: Consolation and Ovid’s Tristia

Nicole Kimball (Newcastle): ‘Love Magic’: Performing the Incantation in Theocritus’ Pharmakeutria
Kirsten Parkin (USyd.): Problems with Paternity? Perceptions of Adultery Law in Calpurnius Flaccus Declamatio 2 

Co-ordinator: James H KO Chong-Gossard (Melbourne)
Judges: Lea Beness (Macquarie), Hamish Cameron (VUW) and Gwynaeth McIntyre (Otago) 

2020 Competition

Joint Winners:

Amanda Macauley (University of Canterbury), ‘The ‘barbarian’ Other: Roman collective identity versus Maximinus Thrax’ (Canterbury)

Roswyn Wiltshire (Canterbury) ‘Receptacle of a Thousand Fantasies: Victorian Reception of Roman glass flasks’

Co-ordinator: James HKO Chong-Gossard (Melbourne)
Judges: Lea Beness (Macquarie), Hamish Cameron (VUW) and Gwynaeth McIntyre (Otago)

Past competitions

Previous winners


Early Career Award

This annual Award, introduced in 2005, is intended to offer acknowledgement and some financial support to those who are ‘early career’ scholars. There are currently two awards, each worth AUD$3000. The aim of the Award is to assist the winner with the publication of their PhD thesis or other research project. Applications are open to those who have completed a doctorate by research in the last five years at an Australian or New Zealand university, and who do not hold a full-time teaching or research position at a university or tertiary institution or who are in a full-time but non-academic position.

2020 Competition


Dr Emlyn Dodd (Macquarie) 
Project: Wine and oil of the Hellenistic to Late Antique Cyclades: Knowledge networks, agricultural expertise and adaptability 

Dr Byron Waldron (USyd.) 
Project: Family Politics in the Age of Diocletian: The Dynasty of Soldiers, AD 284-311 

Co-ordinator: Alison Griffith (Canterbury) 
Assessor: Tim Parkin (Melbourne) 

2019 Competition

Winner: Charles Barnett (Macquarie)
Project: The Liburnian cippus: Tracing Origins and Deciphering Meaning

Co-ordinator: Alison Griffith (Canterbury)
Judges: Janette McWilliam (Queensland) and Jeff Tatum (Victoria University of Wellington)

Past competitions

Past winners


ASCS Conference Travel Subsidies

ASCS has set aside limited funds to provide subsidies towards the cost of travel to present a paper at its annual conference. Postgraduate students, as well as unfunded postdoctoral, unwaged and part-time scholars—not yet retired—may apply. Subsidies are provided to cover part of the cost of attending the conference and applicants must declare all other funds that they have been granted by their affiliated institution or any other granting body. Applicants are encouraged to investigate whether funding for conference travel is available from their own department or university.

It is a condition of applying for a subsidy that the applicant be a current member of ASCS. Applications are usually called for in October each year. For further information, please contact one of the ASCS Postgraduate Representatives.


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Antichthon Journal