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Ana Garcia Espinosa

Miss Ana Garcia Espinosa

Research student

School of History, Archaeology and Religion


I am a PhD candidate researching the role of royal women in Achaemenid Persia their use of power, their leadership, and their agency, through a selection of fragments of Ctesias of Cnidus’ Persica. My research spans from ancient Greece and the ancient Near East to the Hellenistic period, focusing on leadership, queenship, gender studies and sexuality, ancient warfare and Graeco-Persian interaction.

I work and publish on royal women (especially Olympias of Macedon), Xenophon, Ctesias of Cnidus and their relationship with texts and literature of other backgrounds, especially from ancient Greece, Iran and Egypt, on orality and collective memory and women's role as transmitters of history and information.

Academic Background

  • PhD in Ancient History - Cardiff University (2019 - Present). Thesis title: Women and Leadership in Ctesias’ Persica. A Feminist Reading. Supervisors: Professor Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones and Dr Alex McAuley.
  • MA Ancient History – Cardiff University (2018 - 2019). Dissertation supervisor: Dr Louis Rawlings.
  • BA (Hons - 4 years) Classical Philology – Complutense University of Madrid (2012 - 2018). Specialising in Ancient Greek. Dissertation supervisor: Prof Fernando García Romero.
  • BA (Hons - 4 years) History – Complutense University of Madrid (2012 - 2018). Specialising in Ancient History. Dissertation supervisor: Dr Fernando Echeverría Rey.


  • Spanish (native speaker)
  • English (bilingual level)
  • German (A2)
  • Ancient Greek and Latin (BA in Classical Philology)
  • Italian, French and Portuguese (reading level)


  • Ancient Greek Warfare.
  • Achaemenid Persia (559-331 BCE)
  • Gender and sexuality in Antiquity.
  • Greek and Persian interaction in the Archaic and Classical periods.
  • Cross cultural comparative between Greece and Persia.
  • Women and power during the Hellenistic period.
  • Iranian royal women, power and leadership.
  • Military leadership in Greece during the Archaic and Classical period.


Book Chapters

  • McAuley, A. and García-Espinosa, A. (2023) Those infamous females: The (ancient) reception of the sexuality of Hellenistic queens. In: Moore, K. R. ed. The Routledge Companion to the Reception of Ancient Greek and Roman Gender and Sexuality. Routledge, 286-299.
  • García-Espinosa, A. (2022) Mercenary Armies and Power: The Narrative of Power in Xenophon's Anabasis. In: Furlan, U., Husøy, T.A., and Bohun, H. eds. Narratives of Power in the Ancient World. Cambridge Scholars, 218-236.
  • García-Espinosa, A. (Invited) Communication and the Concept of Dynasty in the Achaemenid Court. In: Baker-Brian, N., and McAuley, A. eds, Dynasty in Antiquity: Routledge’s Rewriting Antiquity series, proposal in preparation.


  • García-Espinosa, A. (Forthcoming) Olympias of Macedon: Woman, Queen and ἀρχή of a Multidimensional Exercise of Power in the Hellenistic World. Ancient History Bulletin.

Book reviews

  • García-Espinosa, A. (2023) Rev. of Eurydice and the Birth of Macedonian Power, by Elizabeth Carney. Journal of Hellenic Studies 142: 418-419. Cambridge University Press.

Papers Delivered

  •  University of Cambridge - CA Annual Conference (21st April 2023) Royal Women, Armies and Warfare in Hellenistic Iran: Who had more Power?
  • Swansea University - CA Annual Conference (08th – 11th April 2022)  Women as Transmitters of History: Ctesias of Cnidus and the Influence of Orality in his Persica.
  • University of Waterloo (Waterloo Institute for Hellenistic Studies) - Power, Royal Agency, and Elite Women in the Hellenistic and Roman and Roman World (September 2021-June 2022) Olympias of Macedon: Woman, Queen and ρχή of a Multidimensional Exercise of Power in the Hellenistic World.
  • Swansea University - UWICAH (16th November 2019) Mercenary Armies and Power: The Narrative of Power in Xenophon's Anabasis.

Funding and Prizes Awarded

  • November 2022: BIPS (British Institute of Persian Studies) - Research Grant (£600).
  • December 2019: Bill John Travel Scholarship – Cardiff University (£476.50).
  • 2012 – 2018: Complutense University of Madrid - Honour Distinction Performance Award during BA studies (609€).
  • 2012: Honour Distinction Grant for High School Performance – Spanish Government (1200€).

Academic Bodies and Networks

  • September 2022 - Present: Postgraduate Member of the Royal Historical Society (RHS)
  • 2022 - Present: Member of the Classical Association (CA)
  • 2019 - Present: Member of the British Institute of Persian Studies (BIPS)
  • 2018 - Present: Member of the Sociedad Española de Estudios Clásicos (SEEC)


I am currently a Graduate Tutor in the following modules:

For the 2020/21 and 2021/22 academic years I taught as a Graduate Tutor in the following modules:

  • HS3105: Introduction to Ancient History 1: Gods, Kings and Citizens, 1000 - 323 BCE.
  • HS3106: Introduction to Ancient History 2: Empires East and West, 323 BCE to 690 CE.
  • HS0002: Projecting the Past: Film, Media and Heritage

Teaching Qualifications

  • September 2022: AHSS Learning to Teach Programme – Cardiff University.
  • 12th September 2022: Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.