Finley, John H., Jr.

Finley, John H. (Huston), Jr.

(1904–  ) classicist; born in New York City. He was educated at Harvard (B.A. 1925, Ph.D. 1933), where he taught from 1942–76 and was Eliot Professor from 1942–74. It has been said of Finley that he studied the minds of ancient Greeks and modern undergraduates. As master of Eliot House and an immensely popular teacher whose general lectures in humanities drew standing-room-only crowds, he was an influential mentor and teacher. He was vice-chairman of the faculty committee that wrote the influential Harvard Report, "General Education in a Free Society" in 1946. His Thucydides (1963) and Three Essays in Thucydides (1967) were highly regarded, as was his skill on both the squash and tennis courts.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.