Corey J. Ellithorpe

Visiting Assistant Professor of Instruction

Contact Information and CV

Curriculum Vitae


Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


It is my objective in the classroom to create a valuable and enriching experience for students. My goal not only is to convey the major historical narrative, problems, and themes of a particular historical era, but also to transmit a deep interest in the discipline while encouraging students to develop their own questions and interpretations about the past. Moreover, I believe that such an experience is best achieved in an atmosphere where (1) teaching and learning are treated as a dynamic and reciprocal relationship between teacher and student; (2) where students are no longer passive observers of history but are actively engaged in its exploration; and (3) where students can develop competency and further hone the skills of the historian’s craft. I aim that by the close of the semester, students recognize that the study of history is not about the memorization of a tessellation of facts but that it is instead a range of ever evolving and always imperfect processes and methods by which historians aim to preserve, understand, and contextualize the past. Moreover, I strive to ensure that all of my students appreciate the various factors that have impacted the trajectory of our shared human experience up to the present day, and that such study might also facilitate a more informed approach for our shared tomorrow.

I work very hard to be an effective and inspiring lecturer in the classroom and I find it particularly rewarding to offer courses aimed at a broad audience with little or no experience or interest in history and enthusiastically aim to enliven a newfound appreciation of history for all. Correspondingly, I am thrilled to regularly teach a range of introductory surveys at USF, such as Ancient History I and Ancient History II (EUH-2011; EUH-2012) as well as the topically variable War and Society (HIS-3308), for which I currently focus on revolts, insurrection, and suppression in antiquity. I also teach courses on the ancient world in more specialized upper-level courses and graduate seminars that correlate with my areas of expertise and current research interests. While I am always eager to create new courses based on student demand, my most recent courses are Propaganda and Ideology from Imperial Rome to Nazi Germany; Witchcraft and Black Magic in the Ancient World; Alexander the Great and the Hellenistic Age; Christianity in the Roman World; The Ancient Near East and Egypt; The Downfall of the Roman Republic; The Later Roman Empire; Sex, Money, and Power in the Ancient World.

While limitations exist, I am always open to the possibility of offering independent studies (at both undergraduate and graduate levels) on select topics as well as serving on committees for undergraduate honors projects, M.A. theses, and Ph.D. dissertations. Many such requests and outstanding commitments exist for me each year, so please do inquire as early in the process as possible to ensure that I can contribute.


I am a Roman historian, numismatist, and digital humanities specialist whose research is presently interested in how coinage was featured as a key medium in the larger program of Imperial propaganda and ideology using material culture. In this vein, I am involved in a variety of leading collaborative research projects, such as my role as a research collaborator with an archaeological digital humanities project, Coin Hoards of the Roman Empire [CHRE], at the University of Oxford and lead project manager of the linked-open-data Coin Finds of the Early Roman Empire [CFERE] project, which is planned for digital publication via USF’s Institute for Digital Exploration [IDEX] with anticipated partnership with colleagues at the Deutsches Archäologisches Institut [DAI], the American Numismatic Society [ANS], as well as

I am also in the later stages of a book project, tentatively titled Circulating Imperial Ideology: Coins as Propaganda in the Roman World. In part, this book addresses ongoing debate on the role of material culture in antiquity. As millions of coins survive from the Roman world and comprise tens of thousands of varying combinations of image and text, coinage provides a particularly substantial body of evidence. Prior to my research, however, few efforts to compile a comprehensive summary of this data had been attempted, though scholars often bemoaned its absence. It is for such reasons that I chose to design the CFERE project (beginning in 2014), since without it numismatic evidence cannot most efficiently and impactfully be realized, and without such a database many significant questions remain unanswerable.   

As part of my research, I compiled a GIS-mappable and open-source database of detailed archaeological information for more than 325,000 Roman Imperial coin finds including 75,000 single-finds from 57 countries. I have worked closely with a variety of DH initiatives at multiple institutions during the compilation and organization of this database in efforts to make the most of new collaborative technologies for exploring archaeology and history. Already, my research has produced compelling results showing that the degree of organization and orchestration of Rome’s coinages is far more complex and deliberate than previous assumptions have put forward or imagined. This database, CFERE, as noted above, will be hosted through IDEX at USF and is tentatively expected to be made publicly accessible by 2024.

I look forward to the digital publication of CFERE and establishing its presence at IDEX. Its installation will offer student and scholar opportunity to research coinage and the ancient world through the latest digital humanities approaches that merge technology with material culture and digital curation. Moreover, USF’s IDEX as permanent host of CFERE will also provide continual opportunity for education and training in digital archaeology and curation as well as numismatic methods and practice for students as CFERE continues to expand.