Follow me on
Follow @rbnmyr

Thank you for visiting my website. I am a Lector at the Faculty of Classics of the University of Oxford and a post-doctoral researcher at the Faculty of Linguistics, Philology and Phonetics. I hold an undergraduate degree in Classics and Oriental Studies, and an M.Phil. in General Linguistics and Comparative Philology from Oxford as well. As of 2016, I am further the Secretary for Student Associates of the Philological Society.

In my doctoral dissertation I investigated the historic relationship between Classical Armenian and Western Middle Iranian, specifically regarding questions of language contact resulting in pattern replication ("borrowed syntax"). I am further interested in 'relative attraction' and headless relative clauses, as well as morphosyntactic alignment change.

My general interests include: Iranian comparative and historical linguistics (Avestan, Old Persian, Middle Persian and Parthian), Armenian historical linguistics, Greek and Latin historical linguistics, Indo-European comparative philology, language contact, relative clause syntax, Armenian historiography and codicology.

I have a working knowledge of these languages: Latin, Classical Greek, Classical Armenian, Sanskrit, Old Persian, Avestan, Middle Persian, Parthian; Modern: German, French, Spanish, Eastern Armenian, Russian (basic reading). I am currently getting acquainted with Urartian and Hurrian.

I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy; my FHEA teaching portfolio is available to read here.
A previously compiled portfolio for accreditation as an Associate Fellow can be found here.

I have taught and am teaching seminars and classes on the following subjects: Latin syntax and style (MILC; ~ Stilübungen); Elementary Greek; Intermediate Greek for Historians and Archaeologists; Classical Armenian; as well as a number of reading classes in Latin, Greek, and Classical Armenian.

Tutorial teaching subjects include: Indo-European Comparative Philology (B.A.); Greek Historical Linguistics (B.A.); General Linguistics & Comprative Philology (B.A.); Historical Linguistics (M.Phil.); Armenian Historical Linguistics (M.Phil.); Grammatical Analysis (Syntax & Morphology; B.A.).

Current and future lectures include: Introduction to Historical Linguistics; Linguistic Description of Greek; Indo-European Comparative Morphology; Advanced Issues in Indo-European Philology.

Resources for some of the above subjects can be found below.

Elementary Classical Armenian

Below you will find some notes on the basics of Classical Armenian, and sample tests based on Thomson's An Introduction to Classical Armenian.

Notes on Vocalic Alternation Notes on Syllabification
Test L1-2 Test L3-5 Test L6-8 Test L9-15
Comparative Philology

The topics and suggested readings below are a sample set used in tutorials on Comparative Philology; they are supplemented by a series of lectures on Indo-European phonology and morphology.

What is Linguistic Reconstruction? The Long Vowels of Classical Attic The Evidence for Laryngeals Reconstructing the IE ā- and o- Declensions The Origins of the Latin Future and Subjunctive The Historical Morphology of Comparison
General Linguistics & Comparative Philology

The topics and suggested readings below are a sample set used in tutorials on General Linguistics & Comparative Philology; they are supplemented by a series of lectures on general linguistics, and the structures of Latin and Greek.

Latin word order The Latin ‘sequence of tenses’ Language contact Does morphology exist? The Comparative Method Phonemes and sound systems The question of ‘Narten’ ablaut PIE laryngeals and *CRHC in Greek
Armenian Historical Linguistics

The topics and suggested readings below are a sample set used in graduate supervisions on Armenian Historical Linguistics; a lecture series is not normally provided, but students are encouraged to read widely and make suggestions for topics.

The Development of the Armenian Sound System Armenian and the Laryngeal Theory Indo-European Ablaut and Armenian The Armenian Verb Iranian Influences on Armenian Isoglosses and Subgrouping The Influence of Hurro-Urartian and Kartvelian




Work in progress


Conferences & Invited Talks

Downloadable versions of most of my talks and papers are available online from my page, where you can 'follow me', if you so choose.

Armenia: Masterpieces from an Enduring Culture
Together with Prof. Theo Maarten van Lint, I have been curating the exhibition Armenia: Masterpieces from an Enduring Culture, which will be open from October 2015 until February 2016 in the ST Lee Gallery of the Bodleian's Weston Library.
The exhibition displays about 100 exhibits, ranging from manuscripts and early printed books over objects of worship, family heirlooms, and pigments to ancient and medieval coins. Commemorating both the centenary of the genocide perpetrated against the Armenian population of the Ottoman Empire, and the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Calouste Gulbenkian Professorship in Armenian Studies, the exhibition tells the story of an ancient culture, its triumphes and troubles, and foremost: its endurance.
For some reactions and press coverage, have a look at the Twitter hashtag #BODArmenia.

Manual of Armenian Codicology and Palaeography
In co-operation with Dr Emilio Bonfiglio I am currently working on a digital teaching tool, which strives to explain the basics of codicology and palaeography on the basis of Armenian manuscripts held at the Bodleian Library. Our project falls under the aegis of the Digital Manuscript Toolkit initiative, kindly supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Philological Society
In my role as Hon. Secretary for Student Associates of the Philological Society, I am also edito of the Philological Society Blog which went live in October 2016. There, we present reports on activities funded by the Society, members' research, outlines of talks given to the Society, and short portrays of Council Members. I also manage the Society's social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

I regularly give Outreach talks for sixth form students and younger pupils, general public engagement talks, and teach at the Oxford UNIQ Summer School. The most recent topics of such talks include:

Next to editing the blog of the Philolgical Society, I have on occasion also contributed myself, most recently with a post about Classical Armenian conditionals.