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Memories & Candles

“I never med Dr. Rees nor did I know he was a professor of literature and poetry. I just have a copy of Potato Talk from a second hand bookstore that...Read More »
1 of 8 | Posted by: Anna Holmes - Madison, AL - none

“How I adored Dr. Rees when I was at USC. He was such a passionate teacher and had such a love for poetry. He saw to it that my first poems were...Read More »
2 of 8 | Posted by: Maggie Blue - West Palm Beach, FL

“Over the years that have passed so quickly since then, we have thought frequently of Ennis & Marion and our good friendship back in the late 1950...Read More »
3 of 8 | Posted by: Betsy Getsinger-Donlon & Edward F. Donlon - VT

“Dr. Rees, one of my favorite professors at USC, was also my thesis director. He made the classroom vibrant as the classics came alive under his...Read More »
4 of 8 | Posted by: Kathy Mitchell Folks - Columbia, SC

“Ennis was an exemplary colleague and a fine friend. My interactions with him were always warm and beneficial (to me). He shared his great knowledge,...Read More »
5 of 8 | Posted by: Keen & Nancy Butterworth - SC

“I was a student of Dr. Rees in 1961, and benefited from his translation of the Odyssey and his course on literary criticism. I am saddened to learn...Read More »
6 of 8 | Posted by: John Boylston - Durham, NC

“He taught me to dream and to really enjoy The Odyssey my freshman year at USC. A wonderful mentor. ”
7 of 8 | Posted by: Judy Arant Lackey - Greenville, SC

“The staff of Dunbar Funeral Home extends deepest sympathy to the family of Dr. Ennis S. Rees. ”
8 of 8 | Posted by: Jessica P. Kline - Columbia, SC


Dr. Ennis Rees, 84, passed away on March 24, 2009. He was born March 17, 1925 in Newport News, Virginia. He graduated from William and Mary College, where he was Phi Beta Kappa, ODK and won the Botetourt Medal of Scholarship. Dr. Rees went on to get his Ph.D. from Harvard University in comparative literature. He was Professor of English at the University of South Carolina for over 30 years. Previously he taught at Duke University and Princeton University.
Rees was the author of 21 books, most notably as a translator of Homer’s The Iliad and
The Odyssey, well known to generations of college students. His other books are Selected Poems, Fables From Aesop, and a number of children’s books in verse, including Brer Rabbit, Brer Rabbit and His Tricks, Riddles, Riddles Everywhere, and Fast Freddie Frog. He had many well-known illustrators, including Edward Gorey.
Rees was appointed Poet Laureate of South Carolina in 1984, and he was inducted into the South Carolina Academy of Authors in 1999.
He is survived by his wife Marion Lott Rees and his children, Amy Rees McKee and Jeffrey Stuart Rees, and grandchildren Megan Mckee and Caitlin McKee. He is predeceased by son Andrew Rees and brother George Rees.
A memorial service will be held at Rutledge Chapel at the University of South Carolina, Monday, March 30, 2008 at 3:00 PM.