School 09


Glyn Peter Norton

May 22, 1941 ~ March 6, 2019 (age 77)

Glyn Peter Norton, of Portland, Oregon, died on March 6, 2019, after an extended battle with kidney disease. He was 77 years old.

Glyn was born in 1941 in Exeter, England, a year before the aerial bombardment of World War II. He and his parents, Betty and Trevor Norton, and his younger sister Jill, emigrated to the United States in 1951. In Michigan, where the family settled, Glyn became an exceptional amateur orator, as well as a talented singer and pianist. He was also intellectually gifted: In 1968, he received a Ph.D. in French from the University of Michigan, which also granted him his B.A. and M.A. degrees.

Glyn met his wife Victoria Perez, in Lausanne, Switzerland, in 1964, where he was studying at the University of Lausanne. They married in Plymouth, Michigan in 1966.

Soon afterwards, he embarked on a rich and fulfilling career, as assistant professor of French and comparative literature at Dartmouth College, as professor of French at Pennsylvania State University, and then as professor of Romance languages at Williams College, where he also served as department chair for several years. He retired from Williams in 2012 as the Willcox B. and Harriet M. Adsit Professor of International Studies, Emeritus.  His colleagues described him as an exacting teacher, and an amazing mentor and scholar. https://commencement.williams.edu/glyn-p-norton-romance-languages/ https://president.williams.edu/in-memoriam/the-passing-of-glyn-norton/

Glyn specialized in French and Italian literature and criticism of the Renaissance, including the French essayist Montaigne, and in translation theory and improvisation, about which he wrote a number of books and articles. He was particularly proud that the Cambridge History of Literary Criticism, Volume III, which he edited, was translated into Arabic and Chinese.

Glyn was a sparkling conversationalist who adored talking and thinking about ideas, loved music, gardens and beautiful objects. He and Victoria threw elaborate dinner parties for friends and family. They lived in and traveled to a number of places, including England, France, and the Philippines. Their last adventure was moving to Portland, where the greenness reminded them of England. They enjoyed trips to the wine country and trying Portland’s restaurants. Glyn also was cared for by a community of talented medical professionals and caregivers including the staff at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center.

Glyn is survived by Victoria, sister Jill Hoyles and brother-in-law Jeff Hoyles, of Knoxville, Tenn., children Alexandra Haner, Leslie Norton, Vivian Garcia, Joey de Venecia, and eight grandchildren.  The family will hold a memorial later this year in Massachusetts.  The family asks that any memorial donations be made to Autism New Jersey, 500 Horizon Drive, Suite 530, Robbinsville, NJ 08691 or https://www.autismnj.org/donate/.

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