Jacqueline de Romilly

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Jacqueline de Romilly
Born (1913-03-26)26 March 1913
Chartres, France
Died 18 December 2010(2010-12-18) (aged 97)
Boulogne-Billancourt, France
Nationality French
Education Lycée Louis-le-Grand
Alma mater École Normale Supérieure
Occupation Writer
Known for Member of the Académie française

Jacqueline Worms de Romilly (French: [ʁɔmiji]; née David,[1] 26 March 1913 – 18 December 2010) was a Franco-Greek philologist, classical scholar and fiction writer. Because she was of Jewish ancestry, the Vichy government suspended her from her teaching duties during the Occupation of France.[2] She was the first woman nominated to the Collège de France, and in 1988, the second woman to enter the Académie française. She was also known for her work on the culture and language of ancient Greece, and in particular on Thucydides.


Born in Chartres, Eure-et-Loir, she studied at the Lycée Molière, where she won the Concours général in Latin and took second prize in Ancient Greek in 1930. She then prepared for the École Normale Supérieure at the Lycée Louis-le-Grand. She entered the class of 1933 of the ENS Ulm. She passed the agrégation in Classics in 1936, and became a doctor of letters in 1947.

After being a schoolteacher, she became a professor at Lille University and subsequently at the Sorbonne, between 1957 and 1973. She later was promoted to the chair of Greek and the development of moral and political thought at the Collège de France — the first woman nominated to this prestigious institution. In 1988, she was the second woman (after Marguerite Yourcenar) to enter the Académie française, being elected to Chair #7, which was previously occupied by André Roussin.

In 1995, she obtained Greek nationality and in 2000 was named as an Ambassador of Hellenism by the Greek government. A one-time president of the Association Guillaume Budé, she remained an honorary president until her death at a hospital in Boulogne-Billancourt at the age of 97.[3]

After having only received baptism in 1940, she fully converted to Maronite Catholicism in 2008, aged 95.[4][5]

Honours and awards


  1. "French Scholar Jacqueline de Romilly Dies at 97" Los Angeles Times 20 December 2010
  2. "D’origine juive, elle est suspendue de ses fonctions par le régime de Vichy en 1941."
  3. "Jacqueline de Romilly, helléniste et académicienne, est morte". Le Monde. Retrieved 19 December 2010.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "Dossier. Jacqueline de Romilly, une Athénienne au XXe siècle". La Croix. Retrieved 20 December 2010.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "Réaction du P. Mansour Labaky au décès de Jacqueline de Romilly". La Croix. Retrieved 20 December 2010.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "Reply to a parliamentary question" (pdf) (in German). p. 626. Retrieved 22 November 2012. <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Book of Members, 1780–2010: Chapter D" (PDF). American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 25 July 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links