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Thomas Klein

Thomas Klein

Professor of English; Director of Undergraduate Studies in English

Office: LA 242



PhD, Medieval Studies (1998), University of Toronto

MA, Medieval Studies (1992), University of Toronto

BA, Medieval Studies and the Epic (1990), Kenyon College

Diploma, Italian Language and Culture (1989), Università per Stranieri, Perugia, Italy

As a philologist, I'm interested in early medieval writing, and how knowledge is represented in physical form. Recently, I have written a series of articles on Anglo-Saxon riddles and inscribed objects, including the Franks Casket, the Staffordshire Hoard, and the Vindolanda tablets.

I enjoy teaching all my classes, from Composition to Old English. I find that there is always occasion for shared inquiry and discovery in the classroom, and I feel fortunate to be able to work with students and colleagues at ISU, as well as the larger community in Pocatello.

Selected Publications


Pater Occultus: The Latin Bern Riddles and their Place in Early Medieval Riddling,” Neophilologus: Journal of Modern and Medieval Language and Literature (July 2019).

Old and New Technologies of Asynchronous Communication: Virtual Narratives and ‘Presence’”.  In Narrative, Identity, and Academic Community in Higher Education, ed. Attebery, Gribas, McBeth, Sivitz, and Turley-Ames (Routledge, 2017).

"The Metaphorical Cloak of Exeter Book Riddle 83, 'Ore / Gold / Metal'," ANQ: A Quarterly Journal of Short Articles, Notes, and Reviews (June 2015).

"Of Water and the Spirit: Metaphorical Focus in Exeter Riddle 74." Review of English Studies (February 2015)

"The Non-Coherence of the Franks Casket: Reading Text, Image, and Design on an Early Anglo-Saxon Artifact." Viator (Summer 2014).

Thomas Klein, William Klein, and David Delehanty, "Resolving Exeter Book Riddles 74 and 33: Stormy Allomorphs of Water." Quidditas: Journal of the Rocky Mountain Medieval and Renaissance Association (2014).

"The Inscribed Gold Strip in the Staffordshire Hoard: The Text and Script of an early Anglo-Saxon Biblical Inscription." Anglo-Saxon Studies in Archaeology and History (2013).

"Traditional Approaches to Monolingual Lexicography." In The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics, ed. Chapelle (Wiley-Blackwell, 2013).

"Dialect and Word Choice in Old English: Two Case Studies with Old English Perception Verbs." Anglia: Journal of English Philology (2012).

"'Rise Up, Lord, Scatter Your Enemies': Faith and Doubt in the Anglo-Saxon Staffordshire Hoard." Quidditas: Journal of the Rocky Mountain Medieval and Renaissance Association (2012).

"Anglo-Saxon Literacy and the Roman Letters on the Franks Casket." Studia Neophilologica (May 2009).

"The Ghostly Voice of Gossip in Faulkner's 'A Rose for Emily.'" The Explicator (Summer 2007).

"Stanc æfter stane (Beowulf, l. 2288): Philology, Narrative Context, and the Waking Dragon." Journal of English and Germanic Philology (January 2007).

"Six Colour Words in the Pearl Poet: Middle English Blake, Blayke, Blaht, Blo, Blwe and Ble." Studia Neophilologica (Spring 2000).

"The Old English Translation of Aldhelm’s Riddle Lorica." Review of English Studies (1997).

"In Praise of Bald Men: A Translation of Hucbald’s Ecloga de calvis." Comitatus (1996).

"Words for the Colour Orange in Italian." Quaderni d’italianistica (1994).


Master Teacher, Idaho State University, 2017

Courses Taught

6662: Seminar in Medieval Literature: Medieval Women Mystics

6625: Cross-Cultural Encounters in the Middle Ages

4491: Senior Seminar in Literature

4490/5590: Topics in Folklore: Riddles and Charms

4487/5587: History of the English Language

4486/5586: Old English

4473/5573: Chaucer

4462/5562: Medieval Literature: Dream Visions of the Later Middle Ages

4462/5562: Medieval Literature: Epic and Romance

4461/5561: Classical Literature: Myth and Epic

3323: Genre Studies in Prose Fiction: The Short Story Sequence

2281: Introduction to Language Studies

2280: Grammar and Usage

2267: Survey of British Literature I

2211: Introduction to Literary Analysis

1175: Literature and Ideas

1115: Themes in Literature: Love and Death

1102: Writing and Rhetoric II

1101: Writing and Rhetoric I

HONS 1101: Honors Humanities I