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Professor George Hewitt FBA

Modern and Medieval Middle Eastern Language and Literature Linguistics
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About this Fellow

George Hewitt retired in 2015 from SOAS, serving as Lecturer in Linguistics/Caucasian Languages (1988-1992), Reader in Caucasian Languages (1992-96), and finally Professor of Caucasian Languages (1996-2015). He previously lectured in Linguistics at Hull University (1981-88). Educated at Doncaster Grammar School (founded before 1350), he studied Classics at St. John's College (Cambridge), gaining his doctorate there following two years at Tbilisi University (Soviet Georgia) as a British Council exchange-postgraduate (1975-76, 1979-80). His publications address philological questions in Caucasian languages (principally Georgian and Abkhaz) and aspects of the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict. First president of the Societas Caucasologica Europaea (1986-90), he is Honorary Member of the International Circassian Academy and of Abkhazian Regional Academy of Sciences; he holds Abkhazia Order of Fame and Glory, a Medal of Abkhazia's Foreign Ministry, and a Medal of Abkhazia Defence Ministry. He is Abkhazia Honorary Consul in the UK.



Current post

  • Professor Emeritus of Caucasian Languages, SOAS, University of London

Past Appointments

  • Lecturer in Linguistics, University of Hull, 1981 - 1988
  • Lecturer in Linguistics/Caucasian Languages, Reader, Professor of Caucasian Languages, Soas, University Of London, 1988 - 1996
  • Professor of Caucasian Languages, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, Soas, University Of London, 1996 - 2017
  • Emeritus Professor of Caucasian Languages, Soas, University Of London, 2017


Lingua descriptive studies 2: Abkhaz 1979


Georgian: a structural-reference grammar 1995


The Abkhazians: a handbook 1999


Introduction to the Study of the Languages of the Caucasus 2004


Abkhaz: a Comprehensive Self-Tutor 2010


Discordant Neighbours. A Reassessment of the Georgian-Abkhazian and Georgian-South Ossetian Conflicts


Other Africa, Asia and the Middle East Fellows

Professor Jane Duckett

Contemporary Chinese government and politics; Chinese health and social policy, poverty and inequality; comparative politics

Mr Michael C A Macdonald

Languages, scripts, inscriptions, and rock art in ancient Arabia and its environs; ancient literacy and its uses; the history of ancient Arabian cultures and of the ancient Near Eastern nomads

Professor Derek Peterson

Intellectual and cultural history of eastern Africa; the composition of books; the politics of archives; the infrastructure of religious experience; the social practice of non-conformity; Idi Amin