North American Scholar

SNYDER, Walter Fifield

  • Image
  • Date of Birth (YYYY-MM-DD): 1912-04-09
  • Born City: Northfield
  • Born State/Country: NJ
  • Date of Death (YYYY-MM-DD): 1993-02-09
  • Death City: Spring Hill
  • Death State/Country: FL
  • Married: Ruth Jesperson, 1984
  • Education:

    B.A. Swarthmore, 1932; Ph.D., Yale, 1936; fell., AAR, 1936-38.

  • Professional Experience:

    Instr. history, Hunter College, 1940-1; asso. prof. class., U. of Richmond, 1941-43, 1946-64; USN, 1943-46; prof. hist., Clarion State College (now Clarion University) (PA), 1967-78.

  • Dissertation:

    "Chronological Studies in the History of the Roman Emperors" (Yale, 1936).

  • Publications:

    Quinto Nundinas Pompeis,” JRS (1936) 12-18; “Ancient Coins Bequeathed by E. B. van Deman to the American Academy in Rome,” MAAR 15 (1938) 21-2; “Note on the Irregular Evidence upon the Date of the Beginning of the Year of the Tribunician Power during the Reigns of Septimius Severus and of Caracalla,” MAAR 15 (1938) 62-9; “Ἡμέραι Σεβασταί,” Aegyptus 19 (1938) 197-233; “On Chronology in the Imperial Books of Cassius Dio's Roman History,” TAPA 69 (1938) xlviii; The Feriale Duranum (with R.O. Fink & A.S. Hoey), YCS 7 (1940) 1-221;  REVS: CW XXXIV 1940-1941 271-272 Sanders | AJA 1942 310 Taylor; “On Chronology in the Imperial Books of Cassius Dio's Roman History,” Kl 15 (1940) 39-56; “Public Anniversaries in the Roman Empire. The Epigraphical Evidence for Their Observance in the First Three Centuries,” YCS 7 (1940) 225-317 “When Was the Alexandrian Calendar Established?,” AJP 66 (1943) 385-98; “Nero's Birthday in Egypt and His Year of Birth,” Historia 13 (1964) 503-6; “Progress Report on the Ἡμέραι Σεβασταί,” Aegyptus 44 (1964) 145-69.

  • Notes:

    Walter Snyder studied at Yale under Mikhail Rostovtzeff and following the award of his doctorate he published significant articles on imperial history and was most noted for establishing the date of the Alexandrian calendar.  His research functionally ended with his service in World War II, beginning in 1943 when he was assigned to learn Japanese at the Navy Language School in Boulder, CO. He then earned several decorations as he rose from ensign to lieutenant commander with the Seventh Fleet in New Guinea and other stations in the Southwest Pacific theater.  Upon his return home in 1946 he taught briefly in New York and then in Richmond, where he remained for 24 years, before moving to Clarion University. He was an avid collector of coins and used travel to acquire artifacts of the ancient world. Upon marriage to the novelist, screenwriter, and journalist Ruth Jespersen in 1984, he laid aside his interest in numismatics and art to devote himself to the management of her career. 

  • Sources:

    APA Newsletter, (June 1993) 10-11.

  • Author: Ruth Snyder