A. Dale Trendall AC, CMG, MA, LittD, MA, DLitt, DLitt (hon.), FBA, FSA, FAHA
Dean of the Faculty of Arts, 1947–50
New Zealand-born, Dale Trendall completed bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Arts at the University of Otago, New Zealand, before obtaining a further master’s at Trinity College, Cambridge University, and doctorates from both the University of New Zealand and Cambridge University.
Trendall joined Sydney University as professor of Greek in 1939, with a background in both classics and classical archaeology. He also became honorary curator of the Nicholson Museum, cataloguing and developing the collection, and in 1948 was appointed to his second chair (held concurrently), as foundation professor of Archaeology, the first such position in Australia.
As dean, Trendall was initially elected to complete S.H. Roberts’ term, when he resigned early, and then twice re-elected. In November 1950, half-way through his last term, he too resigned early, in order to travel in Europe for research.
Trendall also chaired the Professorial Board twice and briefly acted as vice-chancellor, but in 1954 left Sydney to become the foundation Master at University House, ANU. Retiring in 1969 to Melbourne, he continued the work for which he was internationally recognised, on South Italian pottery. He was appointed Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1961 and Companion of the Order of Australia in 1976. He received honorary doctorates from a number of Australian universities, including, in 1972, from Sydney University.
During the war he was one of four Arts faculty academics recruited into a top-secret cryptographic unit, where his work, only recently publicly acknowledged, was instrumental in breaking Japanese diplomatic codes.