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Robinson, Edward Stanley Gotch, Sir

    Full Name: Robinson, Edward Stanley Gotch, Sir

    Other Names:

    • "Stanley"

    Gender: male

    Date Born: 1887

    Date Died: 1976

    Place Born: Sneyd Park, Bristol, England, UK

    Place Died: Dorset, England, UK

    Home Country/ies: United Kingdom

    Subject Area(s): Classical, coins (money), and numismatics

    Career(s): curators


    Classical numismatist and Keeper of the Coin and Medal Department, British Museum, 1949-52. Robinson was the son of Edward and Katherine Frances Robinson. After attending Clifton College and Christ Church, Oxford, where he studied under R. H. Dundas. In 1910 he won the Barclay Vincent Head prize, named for the prominent numismatist at the British Museum. Robinson was admitted to the British School in Athens, 1910-11. He joined the British Museum, Department of Coins and Medals, in 1912. He enlisted in the British army in 1914 and was wounded in combat in France. After reassignment to the Home Office, Robinson rejoined the Museum. In 1917 he married Pamela Horsley. Robinson published the first volume of the Sylloge Nummorum Graecorum for the British Academy in 1931, the corpus of Greek coinage. The volume with its detailed photographs, set the standard for the rest of the corpus. In 1933, Robinson and Harold Mattingly published the landmark The Date of the Roman Denarius effectively redating the coinage of Republican Rome. Robinson became Deputy Keeper of the Department 1936. There he worked closely with the Keeper, George Francis Hill. Robinson was appointed Reader in Numismatics at Oxford, succeeding Joseph Grafton Milne (1867-1951) in 1938. He succeeded Hill as Keeper of the Department in 1949, a position he held until 1952. During this time, he was approached by the art collector Calouste Gulbenkian (1869 – 1955) to advise him on his acquisitions. This he did, helping to amass another fine numismatic collection. The period after World War II saw a series of articles on Greek coinage that, characteristic of much of his revisionist work, set the discipline in new directions. His 1958 article “The Beginnings of Achaemenid Coinage,” established the chronology and classification for Persian coins. In 1955 Oxford conferred an honorary doctorate on him. That year, too, he relinquished his Readership at Oxford, but continued to advise in the Heberden Coin Room at the Ashmolean Museum, endowing it with his own coin collection in 1964. He was knighted in 1972. During his last years he undertook the rewrite of Head’s Historia Numorum (1911). It remained uncompleted at his death.

    Selected Bibliography

    [complete bibliography:] “Bibliography of Stanley Robinson’s works 1914-1966.” Kraay, Colin M and Jenkins, G. Keneth, eds. Essays in Greek Coinage Presented to Stanley Robinson. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1968, pp. 259-263; and Mattingly, Harold. The Date of the Roman Denarius and Other Landmarks in Early Roman Coinage. London: H. Milford, 1933; edited, with Allan, J. and Mattingly, H. Transactions of the International Numismatic Congress, Royal Numismatic Society, 1936. London: B. Quaritch, 1938; Catalogue of the Greek coins of Cyrenaica. London: British Museum, 1927; The Collection of Capt. E.G. Spencer-Churchill, M.C., of Northwick Park [and] The Salting Collection in the Victoria and Albert Museum. London. London: H. Milford, Oxford University Press, 1931; and Lloyd, Albert Hugh. The Lloyd Collection. London: H. Milford, Oxford University Press, 1933 ff.; The Newnham Davis Coins in the Wilson Collection of Classical and Eastern Antiquities, Marischal College, Aberdeen. London: H. Milford, Oxford University Press, 1936; “The Beginnings of Achaemenid Coinage,” Numismatic Chronicle 18 (1958): 187-93; “Coins from Lycia and Pamphylia.” Journal of Hellenic Studies 34 (1914): 36-46; “A gold comb – or pin-head from Egypt.” Journal of Hellenic Studies 57 (1937): 79; “Rhegion, Zankle-Messana and the Samians.” Journal of Hellenic Studies 66 (1946): 13-20; “The coins from the Ephesian Artemision reconsidered.” Journal of Hellenic Studies 71 (1951): 156-67.


    [obituary:] “Sir Edward Robinson Authority on Greek Coins.” The Times (London). June 15, 1976; p. 16.


    "Robinson, Edward Stanley Gotch, Sir." Dictionary of Art Historians (website).

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