I graduated from the University of Otago, New Zealand, in 2019 with a First Class Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Classics. My dissertation, “Moral Decline in Sallust’s Bellum Catilinae and Bellum Jugurthinum”, examined Sallust’s historical texts as moralising works centred around the lack of virtus among the elite of the Late Roman Republic, which I argued was reflected in the unchecked ambitions of the texts’ eponymous antagonists and the impotence of their Roman protagonists. This project would prove to be the foundation of my continued interest in the tripartite connection between character portrayal, Roman social values, and rhetoric.
In 2021, I completed my Master of Arts, also at the University of Otago, graduating with Distinction. My thesis, “Prosopopoeia in Ciceronian Oratory”, continued to develop ideas of rhetoric, character, and social values by looking at how Cicero imitated characters in judicial speeches to convince his audience to take his point of view on a case. Throughout this study, I also taught seminars on Roman social history, Greek mythology, Imperial Roman coinage, Greco-Roman art and archaeology, and Latin language, and I undertook a research project examining the life and career of Isabel Turnbull, the University of Otago’s first female Humanities lecturer.