About the event

To commemorate the bicentennial of Lord Byron’s death in Missolonghi, Professor Roderick Beaton and poet Alicia Stallings will share with us their expertise on Byron and Greece.

Roderick Beaton will lecture on “From London to Missolonghi – and back in a barrel of rum: Byron’s life in Greece” and Alicia Stallings will read a recent poem she wrote partly inspired by Byron's Helmet and will give a short talk on "The Isles of Greece."

The Reading Room of the Library where several Bryon memorabilia are on display will be open from 6 to 8pm.

About the speakers

Roderick Beaton is Emeritus Koraes Professor of Modern Greek & Byzantine History, Language & Literature. He grew up in Edinburgh where he first studied Latin and ancient Greek before going on to Peterhouse, Cambridge, to graduate with a BA in English Literature and a PhD in Modern Greek. He joined King’s College London in 1981, first as Lecturer in Modern Greek Language and Literature, and then from 1988 until his retirement in 2018 as Koraes Professor. For ten years he headed the Department of Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies, and from 2012 to 2018 was Director of the Centre for Hellenic Studies.

He is a Fellow of the British Academy (FBA, 2013), Commander of the Order of Honour of the Hellenic Republic (2019) and in 2023 received honorary citizenship of Greece. He is currently Chair of the Trustees of the British School at Athens (BSA).


A.E. (Alicia) Stallings is the Oxford Professor of Poetry. She grew up in Decatur, Georgia, and studied classics at the University of Georgia and Oxford University. Her poetry collections include Like (2018), a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize; Olives (2012), which was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award; Hapax (2006); and Archaic Smile (1999), winner of the Richard Wilbur Award and finalist for both the Yale Younger Poets Series and the Walt Whitman Award. Her poems have appeared in The Best American Poetry anthologies of 1994, 2000, 2015, 2016, and 2017, and she is a frequent contributor to Poetry and the Times Literary Supplement.

Stallings's latest verse translation is the pseudo-Homeric The Battle Between the Frogs and the Mice (2019), in an illustrated edition with Paul Dry Books, and her latest volume of poetry is a collection of selected poems, This Afterlife (2022, FSG). She is the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation. She lives in Athens, Greece.