Classics is the study of the ancient Greek and Roman world, its cultures, and their impact on later cultural traditions.
“In the midst of an age of “work” that is to say, of hurry, of indecent and perspiring haste, which wants to “get everything done” at once, including every old or new book: — this art does not easily get anything done, it teaches to read well, that is to say, to read slowly, deeply, looking cautiously before and aft, with reservations, with doors left open, with delicate fingers and eyes.” — Nietzsche, Daybreak 1881
Our evolving understanding of these concepts (e.g. "ancient," “culture,” “Roman”) gives our discipline dynamism, while a common body of texts function as its shared center. While careful study of these texts is vital, the Classicist's inquiry includes all aspects of life and culture in ancient Greek and Latin society, including the areas of history, law, religion, material culture, art, family life, politics, and philosophy. Classics is also interested in how later peoples understood and transformed this inheritance, generating the rich Classical tradition in literature and the other arts.
Why Classics at Haverford: Curriculum
We offer an array of courses more typical of a large university, but with the individual faculty attention that is Haverford's hallmark. In addition to a variety of courses in Classical Culture & Society, students have access to a sequence of Latin and Greek courses from Elementary, through Intermediate and Advanced, and up to Seminar- and Graduate-level courses. More on Curriculum >
Why Classics at Haverford: Student Research
Our students have frequent opportunities to work with faculty on their research during the summer and to conduct their own research with faculty mentoring, both as part of the department's senior experience and through our research apprenticeship program.
Why Classics at Haverford: Activities
The department's extra-curricular life includes the annual bi-college Orali-tea (recitation of Greek and Latin literature), public marathon readings of Classical texts, and Latin Play; reading groups; visiting speakers; expeditions to plays or museums; and other departmental gatherings; events organized by students are encouraged and supported by the faculty. More on Activities >
Why Classics at Haverford: Study Abroad
There are opportunities in archaeological fieldwork and in study abroad programs: Through our close relationship with Bryn Mawr, students can take classes or choose to major in Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology. Haverford students frequently study abroad during their Junior year at Classics programs such as "the Centro" in Rome and College Year in Athens. More on Study Abroad >
Why Classics at Haverford: Interdisciplinary Study
Cross boundaries through interdisciplinary study: Many faculty in other fields have an interest in classical antiquity; Classics students participate in the ongoing interdisciplinary conversation which is central to the experience of the Haverford community. More on Interdisciplinary Study >
Inside Classics @ Haverford
In this Podcast, Professors Deborah Roberts and Bret Mulligan chat about Haverford's original library collection and how Classics has changed over the years.
- Classical Marathon, students and faculty gathered to hear and participated in a staged performance reading of the ancient novel, the Golden Ass, by Apuleius.
The holdings of Haverford's Special Collections include dozens of vases and other Classical antiquities, including a 3,400 year-old Mycenaean Stirrup Jar, terracotta figurines, and elegant examples of Classical Red- and Black-figure ceramic ware. Haverford students also have access to the extensive Antiquities collection at Bryn Mawr. (viewable only to TriCo community)