St. Andrew's Department of Classical Languages aims to develop in students a fascination with the ancient world and with language in general—its roots, forms, structure and literary nuance—as students work to understand the unfamiliar world and world views of antiquity, while reading works foundational to Western literature. From the earliest levels, the study of classics cultivates inquiring and independent minds, as students are challenged to think precisely about language—both the ancient, and their own. Students become better readers and writers by growing attuned to the structure and tone of a different language, and by understanding language not simply as a tool for communication but as a vehicle in itself for meaning and interpretation.
We offer courses in both Latin and Greek, and all members of the Classics Department teach both languages.
At the intermediate and advanced levels, students develop a discerning eye for linguistic detail through reading a variety of genres, including historical narratives, classical rhetoric, epic and lyric poetry, tragedy, and comedy. They do the work of budding classicists, reading texts in both Latin and Greek, consulting and distilling secondary literature, and writing their own. Advanced students often supplement their study of Latin with Greek, beginning with a half-credit introductory course in the IV or V Form year and continuing quickly toward advanced literary study. Students of modern languages or Western Civilization who wish to pursue an interest in the ancient world or profit from the discipline of classical languages may also take courses in Greek.
The skills of close reading and writing carry over into other disciplines in the humanities: Latin certainly provides a strong foundation for learning Romance languages and, in fact, the learning of any language, because of its attention to detail and structure. Care for language in general animates students' approach to studying all literature and cultivates similar precision in other disciplines. Classics faculty demonstrate the breadth of a classical education by teaching across the humanities curriculum, offering courses and tutorials in history, English, creative writing, and music.
In the end, it is our hope that students grow into a love of language and literature that well extends into their collegiate studies and their lives, however they continue to pursue their interest in the ancient world. We hope students come to see classics as a wellspring for other disciplines and a foundation for the modern world as well as a fascinating object of inquiry in its own right.
- Latin 1
- Latin 2
- Latin 3
- Latin 4
- Advanced Study in Latin: Vergil
- Advanced Study in Latin: Catullus and Horace
- Advanced Topics Tutorial in Latin
Provides an introduction to the basic forms and syntax of Latin. Students learn an introductory history of the ancient Greco-Roman world through the middle stages of the Roman Republic. Readings include passages of historical and mythological interest. Text: Minkova and Tunberg, Latin for the New Millennium, Level 1.
Continues the study of Latin grammar and sentence structure through close reading and composition and begins to introduce students to the prose of Latin authors. Students also continue their study of Roman history through the end of the Roman Republic. Texts: Minkova and Tunberg, Latin for the New Millenium, Levels 1 and 2.
Students learn to read Latin prose through extensive study of the works of Caesar and Cicero. Students explore the dynamic structures of Caesar's historical narratives and Ciceronian rhetoric, and also begin to read Latin poetry. They begin to compose longer passages in Latin, imitating more systematically the prosaic styles and vocabulary of Caesar and Cicero. Readings include:
- selections from Caesar, Commentaries on the Gallic War, Book II;
- Cicero, First Oration against Catiline, Second Oration against Verres; and
- Ovid, Metamorphoses.
Students read the epic poetry of Vergil's Aeneid, while exploring the historical, social and political background of the Augustan period. This intensive reading and writing course teaches students to read both carefully and closely; students develop skills of close analysis and sensitivity to literary nuance. Students also learn the craft of literary criticism by writing commentaries and short essays and by reading secondary criticism. In its readings in Latin this course follows generally the syllabus for Advanced Placement Latin: Vergil; students read the entire Aeneid in English. Texts include:
- Pharr, Vergil's Aeneid;
- Weiden Boyd, ed., Vergil's Aeneid 10 and 12; and
- Vergil (trans. Fagles), The Aeneid.
PREREQUISITE: ADVANCED STUDY IN LATIN: VERGIL
Students read the lyric poetry of Catullus and Horace and gain an understanding and appreciation of poetic structure, versification, and literary criticism. Students read and write extensively, presenting their readings to class and responding to secondary criticism. They begin to gain a sense of the breadth of Latin literature, as they read theses authors as a counterweight to Vergil and consider how each poet approaches similar thematic material. Texts include:
- Garrison, ed., The Student's Catullus; and
- Garrison, ed., Horace: Epodes and Odes.
Not Offered 2017-18
PREREQUISITE: ADVANCED STUDY IN LATIN: CATULLUS AND HORACE
This individualized course allows the advanced student to explore further literature in Latin according to the interest of the student and instructor. Readings may include:
- books of Vergil's Aeneid not read in Advanced Study in Latin: Vergil;
- selections from Roman comedy (Plautus and Terence);
- orations of Cicero; and
- histories (Livy, Sallust, and Tacitus).
A half-credit course that introduces students with backgrounds in both Latin and modern languages to the vocabulary, grammar, and syntax of Attic Greek. Students read, in Greek, rudimentary passages, continuous narratives, and selections from the New Testament. Text: Balme and Lawall, Athenaze Book 1, or Hansen and Quinn, Greek: An Intensive Course.
Prerequisite: Greek 1
Continues the grammatical study of Attic Greek, and introduces students to the rhetoric of Lysias and the literature and philosophy of Plato. Texts include:
- Balme and Lawall, Athenaze Book 1 and 2; or Hansen and Quinn, Greek: An Intensive Course;
- Scodel, ed., Lysias, On the Murder of Eratosthenes; and
- Helm, ed., Plato: Apology.
PREREQUISITE: GREEK 2
Half or Full-Credit Elective
This individualized course allows dedicated students to pursue their interest in Greek language and literature by reading Greek texts of different styles, time periods, and dialects. Texts will include selections from the following genres:
- Attic oratory (Lysias, On the Murder of Eratosthenes);
- tragedy (selections from Euripides' Medea); and
- epic (selections from Homer's Odyssey).