Elinor Cosgrave


I am a full-time PhD candidate, researching elite representations of captive-taking within the Roman world. I began my undergraduate degree in Classical Studies at Newcastle University in 2010, but transferred to the University of Leeds in my second year following a family bereavement. I completed both my undergraduate degree and Masters at the University of Leeds, graduating in 2014 and 2015 respectively. After a year working for an housing association, I returned to the University of Leeds to begin my PhD in Classics in 2016.

I have previously held the role of Educational Outreach Fellow for Classics (2017-2018), and I have been actively involved in organising postgraduate conferences since 2015. I am currently in charge of organising the Annual Meeting of Postgraduates in Ancient Literature (AMPAL), which will be held at the University of Leeds in 2019. 

My research is funded by the Leeds University Research Scholarship, and is co-supervised by Dr Penny Goodman and Dr Regine May.

Research interests

My research centres on ‘The Other’ in the Roman world, particularly the social position of groups which have largely been ignored in traditional scholarship. For instance, I researched disability within Roman society for my MA dissertation and considered the treatment of individuals, including women, slaves and children, with congenital disorders, mobility issues and sensory disabilities. I am also interested in Roman art and material culture, particularly numismatics. Previous research, carried out during my masters, has focussed on: sexual imagery on Pompeian wall-paintings and the varying degrees of damnatio memoriae, including non-elite examples. Other research projects include: the Jewish population in Rome following the First Jewish-Roman War, the concept of Imperial virtues and the ‘Good Emperor’, and celebrity culture in Ancient Rome.

Talks and Workshops

October 2018:
Sexual Violence in Roman Warfare: Politics, Punishment and Revenge, Classics Research Seminars, University of Leeds.

June 2018:
Chains, Corruption and Condemnation: The Memory of Cannae in Plautus’ Captivi, AMPAL 2018, University of Manchester
Roman Culture Workshop, Linguastars, University of Leeds

April 2018:
Researching Culture and Society: Women in Ancient Egypt, IntoUniversity, University of Leeds

December 2017:
Roman Coin Handling Session, ACE Event, University of Leeds

June 2017:
Predictable Cruelties? Women as Prisoners of War in the Roman World, Cruelty and Compassion 2017, University of Leeds


  • MA Classical Civilisation
  • BA Hons Classical Civilisation

Research groups and institutes

  • Classics and Ancient History