Dr Benjamin Harriman

Lecturer in Greek Literature and Philosophy


I read classics at St Andrews before moving south to study ancient philosophy in Cambridge. There I completed my PhD work on Melissus of Samos, a Presocratic monist in the Eleatic tradition, with David Sedley and James Warren. I taught Greek and ancient philosophy at Durham, and I have now, happily, moved further north to Edinburgh.  


PDF icon cvbch2023.pdf

Undergraduate teaching

  • Greek Intermediate (Greek 1c/1d, 2a/2b, 2a/b-ex beginner)
  • Socrates and Plato
  • Socrates and Plato: Five Dialogues
  • The Greek World
  • Stoic Philosophy at Rome
  • Lucretius
  • Early Greek Philosophy
  • Elementary Greek
  • Latin 2a/b

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Research summary


  • Europe
  • Mediterranean


  • Ancient Civilisations
  • Language & Literature
  • Medicine, Science & Technology
  • Politics


  • Antiquity

Research interests

Greek and Roman philosophy, with a particular focus on natural philosophy and metaphysics. 

Current research activities

My research over the last several years has addressed the place of physics in the philosophy of the Stoics. How does natural philosophy inform logical and ethical discourse? Does the status of natural philosophy change during the development of Stoicism; how do account for that change? I have a particular fascination for the Stoicism of the Roman Empire and have tried to explore how these Stoics incorporated the discipline of physics both within their surviving works and, more broadly, in their interpretations of Stoic philosophy. Recent or forthcoming publications include pieces on Heraclitus and the early Stoics, Marcus Aurelius, Posidonius, and Musonius Rufus. A monograph resulting from this research is underway. The Stoic Cleanthes has been a long-term interest and, together with a large team aiming to replace the standard edition of the early Stoics, I will be working on a new edition, translation, and commentary on his life and work. Further interests include Galen, the reception of Stoicism, the history of Platonism, and the afterlife for early Greek philosophy. I am always keen to hear from potential students and collaborators. 

Affiliated research centres

View all 16 publications on Research Explorer