Biography of Winifred Warren, PhD 1987

Biographical Sketch by Deborah Kamen '98

The year 1997 marked the 100th anniversary of the American Philological Association's

meeting held at Bryn Mawr. The Philadelphia Public Ledger of Thursday morning, July 8, 1897, enthusiastically (?) proclaimed: "American Philologists: Interesting Papers Read at the Meetings Yesterday, Considerable Discussion Provoked."

July 7, 1897, was apparently particularly sweltering by Philly's standards, but "notwithstanding the heat, the morning session" of the meeting was well-attended, with "some fifty members being present."


At this meeting, the 29th annual session, Bryn Mawr professor Herbert Weir Smyth presented "The Study of Conjunctional Temporal Clauses in Thukydides," from the Bryn Mawr Ph.D. dissertation of Winifred Warren.


Warren, born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on January 3, 1870, attended public school in Cambridge, and received her bachelor's degree from Boston University in 1891. In 1893-94, she was a Fellow in Latin at Bryn Mawr, and in June 1894 received her MA from Boston University.


Warren then continued her studies in Greek, Latin, and Sanskrit at Bryn Mawr, until the summer of 1896, when she was awarded a Mary E. Garrett European Fellowship. She spent the next year studying at the Universities of Munich and Berlin, where she attended the lectures of Diels and Wilamowitz (among others). Although not mentioned by the Public Ledger, it is quite significant to note that Warren was the first woman ever to have her paper presented at an APA convention.


From 1897-1902, she was an instructor of Latin at Vassar College, during which time she published two articles on the reception of Thucydides: "The Structure of Dionysii Halicarnasei de Thucydidis Idiomatis Epistula", in AJP 20 (1899), and"On Dionysii Halicarnasei Idiomatis Epistula", in CR 16 (1902).


When she married George Arthur Wilson, head of the philosophy department at Syracuse University, she stopped teaching, but continued to publish. Her articles from this period include: "The Soma Offering in a Fragment of Alkman", AJP 30 (1909); "Jason as "Dolomedes", CR 24 (1910); and "The Partheneion of Alkman" in AJP 33 (1912).


From 1918-30, she served as secretary of the American Board of Directors at the Isabella Thoburn College in Lucknow, India, and as corresponding secretary of the New York branch of the Women's Foreign Missionary Society. From 1944-53, she volunteered for the Red Cross. Warren died in 1958.