Colin Smith (1927-1997) was a leading expert in medieval studies, the Spanish language and lexicography. He was honoured as a Commander of the Order of Isabel la Católica in 1988 and was made president of the British Modern Humanities Research Association (MHRA, 1996) and Corresponding Member of the Royal Spanish Academy.
Colin Smith was one of Britain’s preeminent authorities on medieval Spanish literature and lexicography, and the compiler of the best and most widely used Spanish-English / English-Spanish dictionary, published by Collins. He was a professor of Spanish at Cambridge (1975-1990), General Editor of the Modern Languages Review (1976-1981) and author of The Place-Names of Roman Britain (1979). Colin Smith met Álvaro Cunqueiro in the late fifties and his translation of Merlin and Company was awarded a prize in 1991 by the Galician government for the best translation into English. He translated King Amaz’d (El rey pasmado) by Gonzalo Torrente–Ballester for Everyman Library.