Edward W. Spofford, former Classics professor, dies at 81.
Edward "Ned" Spofford
On February 17 Ned Spofford died of pneumonia in Stanford hospital. He was 81, and for some time had been in declining health. He had lived in Lytton Gardens Health Care Center in Palo Alto for several years.
After graduating from Amherst, Ned had won a fellowship in English to Cornell, and in 1956 was offered a position as Instructor in Classics at Smith College. In 1960 he began a Ph.D. course at Harvard, and two years later won a fellowship to the American Academy in Rome. He completed course requirements for the Harvard doctorate, and his MA. thesis was published in 1981 under the title The Social Poetry of the Georgics.
On his return from Italy in 1964 Ned took up a position at Cornell, and was given tenure in 1970. However, he resigned and moved to San Francisco, and in 1972 was appointed Lecturer in Classics at Stanford. Apart from a year as a visiting faculty member at Yale he remained at Stanford, rising to the position of Professor (Teaching), until health problems forced his early retirement in 1988.
Ned was a brilliant teacher, immensely popular with both undergraduate and graduate students everywhere he taught, many of whom kept in touch with him until the end of his life. He will be fondly remembered.
Ned's family have requested that any donations in his memory be sent to the general gift fund in the Department of Classics at Stanford.