North American Scholar

TODD, Otis Johnson

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  • Date of Birth (YYYY-MM-DD): 1883-03-27
  • Born City: Garland
  • Born State/Country: PA
  • Parents: Hollis Devillo & Laura Ann Park T.
  • Date of Death (YYYY-MM-DD): 1957-01-16
  • Death City: Vancouver
  • Death State/Country: BC
  • Married: Helen Laura Lownds, 15 Aug. 1906.
  • Education:

    A.B. Harvard, 1906; Ph.D., 1914.

  • Professional Experience:

    Instr. Gk. Whitman Coll. (Walla Walla, WA), 1906-12; instr. Gk. Carleton Coll. (Northfield, MN), 1914-8; instr. to prof, class. U. British Columbia, 1918-49; chair dept., 1941-9; lctr. Harvard, 1929-30; pres. No. Sect. CAPS, 1939-40; fell. RSC, 1942.

  • Dissertation:

    "Quo modo Aristophanes rem temporalem in fabulis suis tractaverit" (Harvard, 1914); printed HSCP 26 (1915) 1-71.

  • Publications:

    Xenophon. Symposium and Apologia (trans.; Memorabilia and Oeconomicus trans. E. C. Marchant), LCL (London & Cambridge, 1923); "The Character of Zeus in Aeschylus' Prometheus Bound," CQ 19 (1925) 61-7; "The Authorship of the Moretum," CP 20 (1925) 336-40; "Who Wrote Shakespeare's Plays?'," MLN43 (1928) 1-3; Index Aristophaneus (Cambridge, 1932); "An Inelegant Greek Verse," CQ 31 (1937) 163-5; “Τριταγωνίστης: A Reconsideration," CQ 32 (1938) 30-8; "Servius on the Satumian Metre," CQ 34 (1940) 133-45; "Aristotle's Politics IV, xii, 11-13 (Text and Interpretation)," AJP 62 (1941) 416-25; "Caesura rediviva," CP 37 (1942) 22-37; "Sense and Sound in Classical Poetry," CQ 36 (1942) 29-39; "One Circuit of the Sun: A Dilemma," PRSC 3d ser. 36 (1942) 11:119-32; "The Nature of Elision in Latin Verse," PRSC 3d ser. 38 (1944) 11:175-89; "Charon the Portitor," CP 40 (1945) 243-7; "Poets and Philosophers," CJ 41 (1945-6) 49-71; "Euripides and Aristophanes," PRSC, 3d ser. 41 (1947) 11:115-35; "Dates in the Autumn of 63 B.C.," Studies Norwood, 156-62; "Frustrum Porcinum," CP 47 (1952) 93-4.

  • Notes:

    O. J. Todd's name will be familiar to all classicists who have studied Aristophanes in any depth. His Index Aristophaneus remains the standard work of its kind and has been valued highly since its appearance. A student of John Williams White at Harvard, Todd was for 32 years a teacher and administrator at the University of British Columbia. He saw the Department of Classics there produce two of the leading Canadian classicists of this century, Homer Thompson and Malcolm McGregor. His own scholarly productions, mainly in the area of Greek and Latin verse authors, were marked by rigor, precision, and a now rarely found knowledge of ancient meters, in many of which he himself composed with facility.He was a firm defender of academic values during the difficult years of the Depression. A radio talk from 1935 (University of B.C. Archives, FG 100 T 635) on "The University in Relation to the Life of the Province" managed to combine evidence of the practical value of the departments of applied science with a classic defence, supported by Platonic and Aristotelian quotations, of the university as engaged in the unimpeded pursuit of truth. His major avocational interest was association football (soccer); he was active in local and national bodies concerned with this sport, and served as president of the Dominion of Canada Football Association, 1947-9.

  • Sources:

    W. Kaye Lamb, PRSC 3d ser. 51 (1957) 129; M. F. McGregor, Phoenix 12 (1958) 1; idem, University of British Columbia Alumni Chronicle (Spring 1957) 37.

  • Author: Robert B. Todd