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19th International Colloquium on
Latin Linguistics (ICLL)


Machtelt Bolkestein Award

In memory of the late A. Machtelt Bolkestein (1944–2001) the Stichting Fonds Machtelt Bolkestein (Amsterdam) has established a prize for clarity of exposition of contributions by young researchers at the biennial International Colloquium on Latin Linguistics. Until now the prize has been awarded four times. The prize consists of a diploma and € 500. The fifth winner is Stefan Höfler from Vienna for his paper “I hereby confirm that …” — On the hitherto neglected use of the 1st person perfect indicative as a performative.

The criteria for the prize are the following:

  1. The candidate is in the initial stage of her/his academic career, working on a dissertation or having finished it recently. He/she participates in the Colloquium on Latin Linguistics for the first or second time.
  2. A conditio sine qua non is that the paper presented has a good quality, deals with linguistic problems of Latin in the period covered by the Thesaurus Linguae Latinae, and demonstrates familiarity with relevant concepts and theories in contemporary linguistics.
  3. The candidate shows in her/his presentation that he/she is aware of the variety among the audience in terms of nationality, native language, and subdiscipline in Latin linguistics.
  4. Co-authored contributions will not be taken into consideration.

The jury will consist of four or five outstanding Latin linguists appointed by the Stichting. They will report during the closing session of the Colloquium. If they conclude that no presentation corresponds to the criteria mentioned above, there will be no winner.


Applicants for the prize have to indicate their interest when they submit their inscription for the Colloquium, together with the abstract of their paper. They will be asked to send a copy (or extended summary) of their paper and of their handout at least one week before the opening of the Colloquium.


Machtelt BOLKESTEIN (1944-2001), professor of Latin linguistics at the University of Amsterdam, contributed in a substantial way to the development of modern Latin linguistics. She was one of the firsts who applied pragmatic concepts to the analysis of the Latin language (word order phenomena, anaphora, use of tenses). She approached language from a functional perspective and participated in the theoretical debate of Functional Grammar, which made her one of the rare Latinists appreciated outside their proper field. Her work, exemplary by a systematic use of theoretical concepts and a clear methodology, as well as her activity and enthusiasm gave inspiration not only to students but also to many colleagues. She died prematurely, four months after the 11th colloquium on Latin linguistics that she organised in Amsterdam.

A complete bibliography of Machtelt Bolkestein can be found in A. M. Bolkestein et al. (eds.): Theory and description in Latin linguistics. Amsterdam 2002, 7-11.

Her contribution to Latin linguistics is presented by H. Pinkster in Latin Linguistics in Machtelt’s way. Papers on Grammar IX.1, Roma 2005.

See also R. Risselada, Bolkestein, Alide Machtelt in H. Stammerjohann (ed.), Lexicon grammaticorum: Who’s Who in the History of Worlds Linguistics, Tübingen 2009.

And a Wikipedia article in German.