North American Scholar

POULTNEY, James Wilson

  • Image
  • Date of Birth (YYYY-MM-DD): 1907-09-21
  • Born City: Chattolanee
  • Born State/Country: MD
  • Parents: William D. & Elinor D. Wilson P.
  • Date of Death (YYYY-MM-DD): 1993-06-08
  • Death City: Baltimore
  • Death State/Country: MD
  • Education:

     M.A. Johns Hopkins 1932; Ph.D., 1934.  

  • Professional Experience:

    Instr. Gk, Johns Hopkins, 1932-37; vis. Instr. Class., U. Nebraska, 1938; prof class., Carthage Coll., 1938-46; vis. Asst. prof. U. Pennsylvania, 1946-47; mem. fac., JHU, 1947-63;  prof. class., 1963-73; Pres. Soldiers Delight Conservation, 1965-93; USAAF, 1942-45; sec. treas. APA, 1956-59.

  • Dissertation: Array
  • Publications:

    “The Distribution of the Nasal-Infixing Presents,” Language (1937) 163-76; “Intervocalic I in Umbrian,” Language (1949) 395-401; “Umbrian anderuomu,” AJP LXXI (1950) 67-70; “Volscians and Umbrians,” AJP LXXII (1951) 113-127; “The Declension of Latin Compound Adjectives,” AJP LXXIV (1953) 367-82; “Latin parra, Umbrian parfa,” in Studies Presented to D. M. Robinson on his Seventieth Birthday II, ed. G.E. Mylonas & D. Raymond D. (Saint Louis: Washington University Press, 1953) 469-76; “Two Problems in the Iguvine Tables,” AJP LXXVI (1955) 77-82; “The Two Boar-Sacrifices in the Iguvine Tables,”AJP LXXVII (1956) 177-180; “Observations on the Italic Dialects and Latin,” CW LII (1958) 33-37; The Bronze Tables of Iguvium (Baltimore: American Philological Association, 1959) REVIEWS: REL XXXVII 1959 263-266 Heurgon | CW LIV 1960 25 Beeler | RFIC XXXVIII 1960 310-313 Pisani | SE XXVIII 1960 524-528 Camporeale | AC XXIX 1960 235-237 Leroy | Latinitas VIII 1960 66-67 Rossano | Language XXXVI 1960 410-419 Pulgram | REA LXII 1960 181-182 Lejeune | Gnomon XXXIII 1961 744-748 Scardigli | CR XI 1961 62-64 Jones | AJPh LXXXII 1961 301-306 Hoenigswald | Kratylos VI 1961 179-183 Devoto | Euphrosyne III 1961 425-427 Rebelo Gonçalves | IF LXVI 1961 202-208 Untermann | Helmantica XII 1961 390-391 Campos | JCS X 1962 153-156 Hirunuma [en japon.] | Phoenix XVI 1962 53-54 Puhvel; 26 articles on the letters of the alphabet for Encyclopedia Britannica (1962); “Evidence for Indo-European Alternation of Initial gw and w,” Language XXXIX (1963) 398-408; “Studies in the Syntax of Attic Comedy,” AJP LXXXIV (1963) 359-76; Baltimore Trailways (ed.) (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1962); “Some Indo-European Morphological Alternations,” Language XLIII (1967) 871-82; “Some Indo-European Final Diphthongs,” AJP XC (1969) 146-60; “Assimilatory and Dissimilatory Gain and Loss of r,” AJP XCIII (1972) 198-214; “Eupolidean Verse,” AJP C (1979) 133-44; “The Language of the Northern Picene Inscriptions,” JIES VII (1979) 49-64; “Observations on Ennius,” CO LVIII (1980) 3-5; “The Phonology of -nd- and the Latin Gerundive,” in Italic and Romance. Linguistic Studies in Honor of Ernst Pulgram, ed. H.J. Izzo (Amsterdam: Benjamins, 1980) 33-41; “Νίκη, ἵημι, icio, iacio,” AJP CVI (1985) 101-7; “Non-Concinnity in Pindar,” AJP CVIII (1987) 1-8.

  • Notes:

    “Jimmy” Poultney came from an old Baltimore family. His uncle, Walter de Curzon Poultney, was the Beau Brummel of his day in Baltimore, known familiarly as “Sir Walter.” Jim lived in the family home in Garrison from 1917 to 1990. He attended the Hopkins on an accelerated plan bypassing undergraduate degrees. He taught for a few years at his alma mater, then returned after service in World War II in the Army Air Corps as a German translator stationed in London. His first book on the genitive in Aristophanes was important for understanding spoken Attic Greek. His Bronze Tablets of Iguvinum won the Goodwin Award in 1961. An active hiker to the end of his life with the Mountain Club of Maryland, he published a guidebook, Baltimore Trailways.  As an active bird-watcher he spent most New Year’s Days participating in the annual bird count. In 1965 he led efforts to preserve from the depradations of developers Soldier’s Delight, 1900-acre area of serpentine barren in western Maryland with over seven miles of hiking trails. At Johns Hopkins the annual Poultney Lecture in Classics and Historical Linguistics was established in his honor and in his 85th year he was honored by a special meeting at the 1992 meeting of the APA.  

  • Sources:

    WhWh 38 (1974-75) 2480; Jerry Clack, CW 86,6 (July-August 1993) 497-8.

  • Author: Ward W. Briggs, Jr.