Latin

Undergraduate

Latin is alive and well in the many English words that have Latin roots and as the matriarch of the modern Romance languages鈥擨talian, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Romanian. It lives on in the influence it exerted on countless later writers and thinkers and, of course, in Latin works that modern audiences continue to find relevant.

Program Overview

Among the most familiar names in Latin literature are those from its apex in the first century BCE and first century CE. Authors such as Cicero, Caesar, Catullus, Vergil, Horace, Livy, Ovid, and Tacitus mastered the genres of epic, lyric, and elegiac poetry, satire, oratory, and historiography.

We offer courses in Latin at all levels, with those at the intermediate and advanced levels focusing on many of the authors mentioned above. You will also find a wide array of courses (in English) approaching the culture and history of Roman antiquity from a variety of perspectives.

While the study of Latin is a foundation stone of the discipline of classics, the Latin major or minor is also excellent preparation for advanced study in English, religion, philosophy, and history. There are also many opportunities for teaching Latin at the middle and high school levels

Community Voices

Spotlight on Latin students and alums

Rachel Mullervy MHC 鈥11, 鈥19 Teacher

Sarah Mullervy 鈥03

Courses and Requirements

Learning Goals

Learning goals for students of classics and ancient studies are:

  • To analyze critically ancient Greek and Roman texts, in their original languages and in translation, within their literary, philosophical, and historical contexts.

  • To understand major monuments and artifacts within their historical and cultural settings; to develop a visual literacy of ancient art and sharpen the ability to see and express what one sees.

  • To imagine fully and creatively ancient cultural communities when relying on limited written and material remains.

  • To deepen the understanding of current problems by studying the responses of ancient Greeks and Romans to questions about the human condition, including, how to live well, and how to govern. 

  • To write and speak more confidently and effectively, and to develop well-reasoned arguments using primary evidence and/or secondary material, including print and digital resources.

  • To expand intellectual breadth through studying the ancient Greek and Roman worlds through different disciplines and modes of inquiry.

Requirements for the Major

A minimum of 32 credits:

At least 12 credits at the 300 level in the language of concentration12
20 additional credits in approved courses at the 200 or 300 level. These may be courses in Latin or Greek and/or a variety of courses in art history, classics (in English), history, philosophy, politics or religion. 120
Total Credits32
1

These courses should be selected after consulting with the student's advisor.

Requirements for the Minor

A minimum of 16 credits:

12 credits above the 100 level in the Latin language12
At least 4 credits in the Latin language at the 300 level4
Total Credits16

Course Offerings

LATIN-101 Elementary Latin I

Fall. Credits: 4

Offers study and practice in the grammar and syntax of classical Latin.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
B. Arnold, C. Baker
Restrictions: This course is limited to first-years, sophomores, and juniors

LATIN-102 Elementary Latin II

Spring. Credits: 4

Offers study and practice in the grammar and syntax of classical Latin.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
C. Baker
Prereq: LATIN-101.
Advisory: Students who have not completed LATIN-101 should consult the department.

LATIN-201 Intermediate Latin I

Fall. Credits: 4

Combines a thorough review of Latin grammar and syntax with an introduction to the life and literature of ancient Rome, based on the reading of selected passages of Roman prose and poetry.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
C. Baker
Prereq: LATIN-102.

LATIN-202 Cicero and the Enemies of the Roman Republic

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

The career of the Roman orator and statesman Marcus Tullius Cicero spanned the last generation of the Roman Republic, a period of political instability and civil war. As the leading orator of his day, Cicero often used his rhetorical skills to thwart those who he believed were bent on the destruction of the Roman Republic. In this course, we will examine the role of public oratory in the political process in this period with a close reading of Cicero's speeches and letters concerning one of his political enemies (Catiline, Clodius, or Mark Antony).

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
G. Sumi
Prereq: LATIN-201.

LATIN-209 Vergil: Aeneid

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

A study of the Aeneid with attention both to its presentation of the classic conflict between Greek and Roman value systems and to its controversial portrayal of empire in the Augustan age.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
B. Arnold
Prereq: LATIN-201.

LATIN-213 Myth, Memory, and History: Writing the Past in the Roman Republic

Spring. Credits: 4

Livy and Sallust, the best known historians of the Roman Republic, viewed history writing as a moral enterprise, presenting events from the past as exemplary tales to inform and enlighten the lives of their readers. Their narratives thus are highly rhetorical, combining myth, memory, and history to reconstruct the past. Close reading of selections from Livy's Ab Urbe Condita and/or Sallust's monographs--the Bellum Catilinae and Bellum Jugurthinum--will lead to discussions about how Romans viewed their past and how they wrote about it.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
B. Arnold
Prereq: LATIN-201.

LATIN-295 Independent Study

Fall and Spring. Credits: 1 - 4

The department
Instructor permission required.

LATIN-302 Cicero and the Enemies of the Roman Republic

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

The career of the Roman orator and statesman Marcus Tullius Cicero spanned the last generation of the Roman Republic, a period of political instability and civil war. As the leading orator of his day, Cicero often used his rhetorical skills to thwart those who he believed were bent on the destruction of the Roman Republic. In this course, we will examine the role of public oratory in the political process in this period with a close reading of Cicero's speeches and letters concerning one of his political enemies (Catiline, Clodius, or Mark Antony).

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
G. Sumi
Prereq: Two courses in Latin at the 200-level or any 300-level Latin course.

LATIN-307 The Slender Muse

Fall. Credits: 4

A study of the highly romantic poetry that launched a revolution in Latin literature, including such works as Catullus's epyllion on Peleus and Thetis and Vergil's Eclogues and Georgics, with attention to the new understanding of poetry shown in these poems and to their commentary on the social turmoil of the last phase of the Republic.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
B. Arnold
Prereq: Any Latin course above LATIN-201.

LATIN-309 Vergil: Aeneid

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

A study of the Aeneid with attention both to its presentation of the classic conflict between Greek and Roman value systems and to its controversial portrayal of empire in the Augustan age.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
B. Arnold
Prereq: Two courses in Latin at the 200-level or any 300-level Latin course.

LATIN-310 Ovid: Metamorphoses

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

A study of Ovid's ambitious epic celebrating change and transformative forces, with attention to the challenges it poses to traditional Roman values and to conventional Roman notions of the work appropriate to a poet. In particular, consideration will be given to the way Ovid's poem subversively responds to Vergil's work.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
B. Arnold
Prereq: Two courses in Latin at the 200-level or any 300-level Latin course.

LATIN-313 Myth, Memory, and History: Writing the Past in the Roman Republic

Spring. Credits: 4

Livy and Sallust, the best known historians of the Roman Republic, viewed history writing as a moral enterprise, presenting events from the past as exemplary tales to inform and enlighten the lives of their readers. Their narratives thus are highly rhetorical, combining myth, memory, and history to reconstruct the past. Close reading of selections from Livy's Ab Urbe Condita and/or Sallust's monographs--the Bellum Catilinae and Bellum Jugurthinum--will lead to discussions about how Romans viewed their past and how they wrote about it.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
B. Arnold
Prereq: Two courses in Latin at the 200-level or any 300-level Latin course.

LATIN-395 Independent Study

Fall and Spring. Credits: 1 - 8

The department
Instructor permission required.

Contact us

The Department of Classics and Italian oversees programs in ancient studies, classics, Italian, Greek and Latin.

Denise Falk
  • Academic Department Coordinator

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