F. M. Cornford

F. M. Cornford books and biography

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F. M. Cornford

Francis Macdonald Cornford (1874 – 1943) was an English classical scholar and poet. He was a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge from 1899 and held a university teaching post from 1902. He became Laurence Professor of Ancient Philosophy in 1931.

His work Thucydides Mythistoricus (1907) argued that Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War was informed by Thucydides' tragic view. He is probably better known now for his Microcosmographia Academica (1908), the classic insider's satire on academic politics. It is the source of a number of catchphrases, such as the doctrine of unripeness of time.

He married the poet Frances Darwin, daughter of Francis Darwin and granddaughter of Charles Darwin — she became known under her married name. They had 5 children: Christopher, Claire, Helena, Hugh, and the poet John Cornford.

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