ARNOLD MARKLEY was a Southern gentleman of enormous erudition. His day job as professor of English at Penn State's Brandywine campus, in Delaware County, was only the beginning of his story, even though he was a teacher with a daunting curriculum.
It included freshman composition, introductory courses in British literature, classical mythology and literary theory, as well as more specialized courses in Shakespeare, British Romantic and Victorian literature.
And, oh yes, Gothic fiction.
His students obviously got their money's worth out of Dr. Markley, who died June 3 of complications of leukemia. He was 47 and lived in West Philadelphia.
A native of South Carolina, he was the author and/or editor of numerous books and articles in learned journals, devoted to the literature of the 18th and 19th centuries.
He also led presentations on literary subjects at universities and conferences around the country, including the Modern Language Association of Philadelphia, and in Canada.
If all this sounds pretty esoteric, this was the subject of a conference he directed at the University of Montreal: "Aristocrats Behaving Badly: Deviant Gambling and Dueling in the 1790s Reformist Novel."
Languages he studied included ancient Greek, Latin, Anglo-Saxon, Italian, French and German.
"My research and editorial work is currently focused on the political novels that were published in Great Britain in the wake of the French Revolution," he wrote in a profile of himself on a Penn State Brandywine website.
"During the 1790s, many authors who were interested in promoting social reform found the novel to be a useful tool for disseminating their views on such issues as slavery, women's rights, and the abuses of the class system in contemporary Britain," he wrote.
His writings and editing work included the works of many poets and novelists of that age, such as the unpublished manuscripts of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, wife of the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and the author of Frankenstein.
Arnold was born in Greenville, S.C., and spent his childhood in Athens, Ga., and later Gainesville, Ga. His family moved to Fayetteville, N.C., where he graduated with honors and as student-body president from the Fayetteville Academy.
He graduated from Guilford College, in Greensboro, N.C., in 1986, with a double major in English and classics. He studied Greek and Latin for two additional years and then began graduate studies in classics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He completed a Ph.D. in 19th-century British Romantic and Victorian literature there.
It was shortly afterward that he moved to Philly and took the teaching job at the Penn State campus. He enjoyed traveling, biking, gardening, film and theater, and working out. And playing with his dog, Bella.
He is survived by his parents, Julia Dent Markley and Arnold A. "Bill" Markley III; a sister, Mary Holley Markley; a grandmother, Mary S. Markley, and his partner of 17 years, Dr. Brian Meyer.
Services: 11 a.m. tomorrow at the Church of St. Luke and the Epiphany, 330 S. 13th St. Friends may call at 10 a.m.