Classical Studies

The PhD in Classical Studies prepares students to be effective and inspiring teachers and insightful professional scholars of classical antiquity. The program centers on structured study of the classical languages, Greco-Roman culture, and the perspectives and methods of research available for the classical world. As teachers, mentors, and evaluators, the faculty provide careful training and guidance of students, who are encouraged to show independent initiative in pursuing their own interests, goals, and intellectual identities. The Department of Classical Studies promotes interdisciplinary and comparative literary, historical, and cultural studies embracing a wide range of areas, and has particular strengths in Greek drama, Greek and Roman epic, Greek and Roman history, Latin poetry, Roman rhetoric, translation and interpretation of classical literature, Indo-European/historical linguistics, and the classical tradition in Europe and America. In addition, Classical Studies maintains a close working relationship with the departments of Anthropology, History of Art & Architecture, Philosophy, Romance Studies, World Languages & Literatures, and Religion. The program is primarily designed to prepare students for college and university careers in Classics.

The faculty of the Department of Classical Studies have expertise in a wide array of research areas within the Greco-Roman world. In addition to regularly offered surveys of Greek and Latin literature, recent graduate seminar authors include Homer, the Greek lyric poets, Sophocles, Aristophanes, Thucydides, Horace, Ovid, Vergil, Lucretius, and Tacitus. Recent graduate seminar topics include Roman epistolography and biography, the Greek and Roman novel, the Greek historical tradition, Athens in the 5th century, Hesiod and his reception to the Renaissance, individual and community in late Republican/early Imperial Rome, and the reception of Vergil in antiquity.


Arion: A Journal of Humanities and the Classics and The Journal of Field Archaeology are edited at Boston University.

Arrowsmith/Lindsay Library

The department maintains a reading-room library that includes a collection of texts from the estate of Professor William Arrowsmith. The collection is made up of Greek and Latin texts, the Loeb Classical Library, basic reference works, and a variety of related materials. The remainder of the classical collection is housed in the University’s Mugar Library.

Computer Resources

Students have access to a broad range of online classics and humanities resources through Mugar Library.

Museum of Fine Arts

Qualified students may apply for admission to courses of study at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. For further information, consult the Director of Graduate Studies of the Department of Classical Studies.