Editors’ Note

This book is the culmination of decades of immersion in its material and years of painstakingly careful research and writing. Sadly the author, William St Clair, died in 2021 shortly before the manuscript was planned to go into production. He left behind electronic folders filled with his most recent drafts of the book’s many chapters. It was our task, together with all the staff at Open Book Publishers, the academic press of which William St Clair was chairman, to make the book ready for publication.

Most of the chapters were in a polished state, but several bore the marks of unfinished drafting and one, which he had only just begun to write, had to be abandoned, its material folded into other chapters of the book. The task of editing the manuscript was therefore a complex one. We worked closely on the significant revisions required, balancing the final changes needed to craft a book worthy of William St Clair’s distinguished academic record while remaining faithful to what we thought were his precise intentions. The guidance of Roderick Beaton was invaluable in steering us through the many pitfalls that might otherwise have arisen when editing a book whose author was no longer there to clarify points of confusion, smooth out wrinkles or correct previously unnoticed errors. Thanks are also due to Emily Lane, who worked with William St Clair and provided him with a keen editorial eye during earlier phases of the writing process, and to Sam Noble, who helped us in the final stage.

Every effort has been made to find any information that was missing from the references and captions, but inevitably in such a large book, without the author to lay his hand on the required volume or to interpret a cryptic note, the occasional gap may remain.

The most radical decision we took was to remove five chapters from the manuscript entirely and include them in a soon-to-be-published separate volume, The Classical Parthenon: Recovering the Strangeness of the Ancient World. It had always been William St Clair’s plan to release these chapters to be published on their own, in what he called a customised edition. The majority of readers of this latter volume he thought would be classical scholars who would not necessarily be interested in the modern Parthenon during the Romantic era, the Greek Revolution and up to the present day. However he did intend that all the chapters also remained in the larger single volume. It was our decision that, in an already lengthy book, we should pay heed to the instinct that had first led William St Clair to separate out these customised chapters. We hope that our efforts as editors have helped to make this first of two books a superb literary legacy from an outstanding scholar with a lifelong interest in the Parthenon and all its meanings.

David St Clair and Lucy Barnes March 2022.

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