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Dr Philippa Steele

Languages of ancient Cyprus; Aegean linear scripts; multilingualism in the ancient world; languages of ancient Mediterranean and Near East; Ancient Greek dialectology
Dr Philippa Steele

Affiliated Lecturer, Faculty of Classics

Languages of ancient Cyprus

Aegean linear scripts

Multilingualism in the ancient world

Languages of ancient Mediterranean and Near East

Ancient Greek dialectology

Departments and Institutes

Faculty of Classics:

Research Interests

My doctoral thesis focused on the languages and scripts of ancient Cyprus, c.1600-300 BC, including their chronological and geographical distribution and issues of epigraphy, dialectology and language contact. I am now working on the history of the Greek language in the ancient eastern Mediterranean more broadly. My other research interests include the study of ancient scripts, onomastics, language contact and linguistic diversity, dialectology, island studies and the social context of script use.


  • Historical linguistics
  • Dialectology
  • Philology

Key Publications

Steele, P.M. (forthcoming). A Linguistic History of Cyprus: The Non-Greek Languages, and their Relations with Greek, c.1600-300 BC. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

Steele, P.M. (ed.) (2012 – in press). Syllabic Writing on Cyprus and its Context. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

Steele, P.M. (2011). Eteocypriot: Linguistic and Archaeological Evidence, in Georgiou, A. (ed.), Cyprus: an island culture. Society and Social Relations from the Bronze Age to the Venetian Period, Oxford, Wiley-Blackwell, 122-32.

Steele, P.M. (2011). 'Gaps' in Literacy: Social responses to economic crisis in the Late Bronze Age eastern Mediterranean, Archaeological Review from Cambridge 2011, 53-63.