Research Lecturer in Classics

Chiara Blanco

  • I work on the intersections between Ancient Medicine and Classical Literature; Senses and Emotions in Antiquity.

  • I am a co-founder of the research network Body and Medicine in Latin Poetry.

  • I took my PhD at Cambridge University and taught at Exeter College, Oxford, the University of Cambridge and Durham University before coming to Trinity.

Chiara Blanco


Here at Trinity I teach the following papers for Mods: Virgil, Aeneid; Texts and Contexts (Roman topics); Latin language, including unseens, prose composition, and preparation for the linguistic commentary element of the Mods language paper. At the Final Honour School(FHS) level, I teach Latin Core and Ovid. 

You can find out more about my work here, and you can follow me on Twitter.


My main research interests lie in the intersections between ancient literature (Greek tragedy in particular) and medicine. My publications include​ a new interpretation of Sophocles’ Women of Trachis by reading the text side-by-side with Hippocratic treatises (‘Heracles’ itch: The first case of male uterine displacement in Greek literature’, Classical Quarterly, 2020). 

I am currently co-editing two volumes: one (Body and Medicine in Latin Poetry (under contract by De Gruyter) explores the intersections between ancient medical theories and Latin Poetry, as well as the centrality of the body and its affections in non-medical Roman literary productions; the other (Tereus through the Ages) focuses on the reconstruction, transmission and reception of the myth of Tereus in Greece and Rome by examining its different adaptations and their interactions.

I am also interested in the role of the senses and emotions in Greek and Roman culture, and I am currently working on a monograph on the cultural poetics of touch in the ancient world.

Selected Publications

Blanco, C., Hahn, A., Martorana, S. (eds.), Body and Medicine in Latin Poetry (forthcoming) (Berlin: De Gruyter)

Blanco, C. ‘Heracles’ Itch: The First Case of Male Uterine Displacement in Greek Literature’, 2020, Classical Quarterly

Blanco, C. ‘Death as Dehumanization in Sophocles’ Philoctetes’, in Gazis G.A., Hooper A. (eds.), Aspects of Death in Greek Literature, 2020 (forthcoming) (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press)

Abbattista A., Blanco, C. ‘Tereus’ Illicit Penetration(s): A New Reading of Fr. 581 R’, in Domouzi A. (ed.), Reconstructing and Adapting Fragmentary Greek Tragedy, 2021 (forthcoming) (Berlin: De Gruyter)

In Preparation:

Blanco, C., A Cultural Poetics of Touch in the Ancient World

Abbattista, A., Blanco, C., Haley, M., Savani G. (eds.), Tereus through the Ages

Blanco, C., ‘Flesh and Stone: Touch and Skin in Ovid’s Pygmalion’

Dr Blanco

What makes this play [Sophocles’ Trachiniae] so remarkably modern and universally relatable [is] the tragic loneliness that the hero experiences in dealing with his pain.