Field Examinations


In addition to translation exams, students must complete four of six written field examinations.


I. Latin Literature

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Recommended readings
Gregory Castle, Blackwell Guide to Literary Theory (2007)
Gian Biagio Conte, Latin Literature (1994)
Elaine Fantham, Roman Literary Culture From Cicero to Apuleius (1996)
Terry Eagleton, Introduction to Literary Theory
Stephen Harrison, Companion to Latin Literature (2005)

Primary (preferably in Latin), beyond what is read for the translation exam:
Apuleius, Rest of Met.
Calp. Siculus, Eclogues 1 and 7
Cicero, Brutus, De Oratore 1 & De Rep. 1 & 6, De Officiis 1, Philippic 2
Aulus Gellius, 1 book of Noctes Atticae
Historia Augusta, Lives from Hadrian to Commodus
Horace, Epodes, rest of Odes and Satires (beyond translation exam)
Juvenal, Satire 6
Livy, Books 21, 27, 30, 39
Lucan, Pharsalia
Nepos, Atticus
Ovid, Rest of Metamorphoses; two Heroides
Plautus, One more play
Pliny I, Preface and one book of Historia Naturalis
Pliny II, Panegyricus 1-10, 90-95
Quintilian, Books 1, 10, 12
Sallust, Jugurtha; speeches and letters from Histories
Seneca I, Prefaces to Controversiae; Suasoria 6
Seneca II, Epist. Mor. 12, 56, 86, 88, 108, 122; Apocolocyntosis; De Consolatione ad Marciam
Suetonius, Lives
Tacitus, Agricola; Germania; rest of Annals
Terence, Eunuchus or Adelphi (the play not read for translation exam)
Val. Flaccus, Argonautica, any two books
Velleius Paterculus, All
Vergil, Rest of Georgics

History of scholarship
L. D. Reynolds and N. G. Wilson, Scribes and Scholars (1974)
Rudolf Pfeiffer, History of Classical Scholarship vols. 1 and 2 (1968)

Shadi Bartsch, Actors in the Audience (1994)
Mary Beard, “A complex of times: no more sheep on Romulus' birthday,” PCPS 33 (1987) 1-15
Jas Elsner, “Ekphrasis and the gaze from Roman poetry to domestic wall painting,” ch. 4 of Roman Eyes: Visuality and Subjectivity in Art and Text (2007)
Denis Feeney, Literature and Religion at Rome (1998)
Don Fowler, “Postmodernism and Romantic irony” and “On the shoulders of giants,” both in Roman Constructions: Readings in Postmodern Latin (2000)
Maud Gleason, Making Men (1995)
Anthony Grafton, “How Guillaume Budé read his Homer,” in Commerce with the Classics (1987), 135-83
Stephen Greenblatt, “Towards a poetics of culture,” in The New Historicism, ed. H. Aram Veeser (1989), 1-14
Erich Gruen, “The appeal of Hellas,” in Culture and National Identity in Republican Rome (1992), 223-271
Thomas Habinek, “The invention of Latin literature,” in The Politics of Latin Literature (1998), 34-68
Malcolm Heath, Unity in Greek Poetics (1989)
Stephen Hinds, Allusion and Intertext (1998)
W.R. Johnson, Darkness Visible (1976)
Robert Kaster, ch. 1, Guardians of Language (1988)
Andrew Laird, ch. 1, Powers of Expression, Expressions of Power (2000)
Michele Lowrie, chs 1, 3 and 4 of Writing, Performance, and Authority in Augustan Rome (2009)
John Marincola, Authority and Tradition in Ancient Historiography (1997)
Charles Martindale (ed.), chs 1 and 4 of Latin Poetry and the Judgment of Taste (2005)
Amy Richlin, The Garden of Priapus (1992)
Donald Russell, Criticism in Antiquity (1981)
Andrew Wallace-Hadrill, “Mutatio morum: the idea of a cultural revolution,” in The Roman Cultural Revolution, ed. T. Habinek and A. Schiesaro (1997)
Gordon Williams, Tradition and Originality in Roman Poetry (1968)
John J. Winkler, Actor and Auctor (1985)
A. J. Woodman, chs 2 and 4 of Rhetoric in Classical Historiography (1987)

Students are encouraged to supplement their knowledge and dig deeper into their areas of interest by consulting the many good Companions, Handbooks, and other collections produced in recent years by Oxford, Cambridge, Brill, and Blackwell. Consult departmental faculty for advice.

II. Greek Literature

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Recommended readings
Whitmarsh, T. 2004. Ancient Greek Literature. Cambridge (Polity).
Cartledge, P. 2002. The Greeks: A Portrait of Self and Others. 2nd ed., OUP.
Reynolds, L.D., & Wilson, N.G. 1991. Scribes and Scholars. A Guide to the Transmission of Greek and Latin Literature. OUP.

Primary (preferably in Greek), beyond what is read for the translation exam:
Aeschylus, Oresteia
Apollonius, Argonautica
Aristophanes, Birds, Peace
Aristotle, Physics I, Athenaion Politeia.
Demosthenes, De Corona
Euripides, Five additional plays
Gospels, Mark (or any other)
Herodotus, Rest of corpus
Hesiod, Theogony or Works and Days (whichever not read for translation exam)
Homer, Rest of Iliad and Odyssey plus Hymns 1, 3, 5
Josephus, Jewish War I.1-195 or equivalent (about 25 pages); or Macc. IV.
Longus, rest of Daphnis and Chloe
Lucian, True History (44 pp) or How to Write History (32 pp) or Alexander (28 pp) or Icaromenippus (21 pp): read the texts not read for translation exams
Plato, Rest of Republic, Protagoras, Phaedrus
Plutarch, Life corresponding to that chosen for translation exam, De poetis audiendis
Polybius, Book 6
Sophocles, The rest
Theocritus, Three additional Idylls
Xenophon, All of Hellenica

Bowie, E. 1986. “Early Greek Elegy, Symposium, and Public Festival”. In: JHS 106, 13-35.
Burkert, W. 1992. The Orientalizing Revolution. Near-Eastern Influence on Greek Culture in the Early Archaic Age. HUP.
Easterling, P. 1990. “Constructing Character in Greek Tragedy”. In: Pelling, Ch. (ed.). Characterization and Individuality in Greek Literature. OUP, 83-99.
Goldhill, S. 1991. The Poet’s Voice. Essays on Poetics and Greek Literature. CUP.
Kurke, L. 1991. The Traffic in Praise. Pindar and the Poetics of Social Economy. Ithaca (CoUP).
Lloyd, G.E.R. Magic, Reason, and Experience. CUP.
Murray, O. 2001. “Herodotus and Oral History”. In: Luraghi, N. (ed.). The Historian’s Craft in the Age of Herodotus. OUP 2001, 16-44.
Osborne, R. 2004. “Homeric Society”. In: Fowler, R.L. (ed.). The Cambridge Companion to Homer. CUP, 206-219.
Payne, M. 2007. Theocritus and the Invention of Fiction. CUP.
Pelling, Ch. 2009. “Thucydides’ Speeches”. In: Rusten, J.S. (ed.). Oxford Readings in Classical Studies: Thucydides. 2nd ed., OUP, 176-190.
Rusten, J.S. 2009. “Thucydides and His Readers”. In: id. (ed.). Oxford Readings in Classical Studies: Thucydides. 2nd ed., OUP, 1-28.
Scodel, R. 2004. “The Story-Teller and His Audience”. In: Fowler, R.L. (ed.). The Cambridge Companion to Homer. CUP, 45-48.
Seaford, R. 2000. “The Social Function of Attic Tragedy”. In: CQ 50, 30-44.
Swain, S. 1996. Hellenism and Empire. CUP.
Taplin, O. 1986. “Fifth-Century Tragedy and Comedy: A Synkrisis”. In: JHS 106, 163-174.
Thomas, R. 2000. Herodotus in Context: Ethnography, Science, and the Art of Persuasion. CUP.
Winkler, J., & Zeitlin, F. (eds.) 1990. Nothing to Do With Dionysus? Athenian Tragedy in Its Social Context. Princeton (PUP).

III. Greek History

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Ancient Sources in Translation
Xenophon, Hellenica
Plutarch, lives of Lycurgus, Solon, Themistocles, Aristides, Pericles, Nicias, Alcibiades, Lysander, Agesilaos, Pelopidas, Demosthenes, Alexander
The Old Oligarch
Xenophon, Spartan Constitution
[Aristotle], Constitution of Athens

Secondary Literature
Robin Osborne, Greece in the Making (2nd ed., 2009)
Jonathan Hall, A History of the Archaic Greek World (2007)
John Davies, Democracy and Classical Greece (2nd ed., 1993)
Josiah Ober, Mass and Elite in Democratic Athens (1989)
Mogens Hansen, The Athenian Democracy (1991)
Ian Morris, “The Greater Athenian State” in I. Morris and W. Scheidel, The Dynamics of Ancient Empires (2009), 99-177.
Malcom Errington, A History of the Hellenistic World (2008)
Moses Finley, Economy and Society in Ancient Greece (1981)
Michael Whitby, ed., Sparta (2002)

IV. Classical Archaeology

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Alcock, S.E., and R. Osborne, 2007, Classical Archaeology, Oxford:

Chap. 1, “What is Classical Archaeology?,” A. Snodgrass and M. Millett,
Chap. 4, “The Essential Countryside,” S. Alcock and N. Terrenato, 118-161.
Chap. 5, “Urban Spaces and Central Places,” T. Hölscher and N. Purcell,
162- 202.
Chap. 9, “The Creation and Expression of Identity,” J.M. Hall and A.
Wallace- Hadrill, 235-380.

Biers, W., 2007, The Archaeology of Greece, Ithaca and London.
Ramage, A., and N. Ramage, 2008, Roman Art, New York.
Renfrew, C., and P. Bahn, 1991, Archaeology: Theories, Methods and Practice,“Whose Past? Archaeology and the Public,” London, 533-564.
Schnapp, Alain, 1997, "Archaeology and the Presence of the Past" in A. Schnapp, The Discovery of the Past, New York, 11-37.
Whitley, J., 2001, The Archaeology of Ancient Greece, Cambridge, 77-419.

Pausanias, Description of Greece, Book 1, Attica.
Sourcebook: J. J. Pollitt, 1990, The Art of Ancient Greece: Sources and Documents.2nd ed. Cambridge.
Vitruvius, Ten Books on Architecture, Book 6, in Vitruvius, trans. and commentary by I.
D. Rowland and T. N. Howe, 2001, Cambridge.
Sourcebook: J. J. Pollitt, 1988, The Art of Rome, c. 753 B.C. – A.D. 337. Sources and Documents.
Kearns, E., 2009, Ancient Greek Religion: Historical Sources in Translation, London.
Beard, M., 1998, Religions of Rome, vol. 2, A Sourcebook, Cambridge.

Alcock, S., 2002, Archaeologies of the Greek Past: Landscape, Monuments, and Memories, Cambridge, “Archaeologies of Memory,” 1-35; “Being Messenian,” 132-175.
Camp, J., 2004, The Archaeology of Athens, New Haven, 21-182.
Elsner, J., 2007, Roman Eyes: Visuality and Subjectivity in Art and Text, Princeton:“Viewing the Gods,” 225-252; “Viewing and Resistance,” 253-288.
Hamilakis, Y., 2008, “Decolonizing Greek Archaeology: Indigenous Archaeologies, Modernist Archaeology and the Post-Colonial Critique,” in D. Damaskos and D. Plantzos, eds., A Singular Antiquity: Archaeology and Hellenic Identity in Twentieth Century Greece, Athens, 273-298.
Hölscher, T., 2004, The Language of Images in Roman Art, Cambridge, 58-85, 103-127.
Pedley, J., 2005, Sanctuaries and the Sacred in the Ancient Greek World, Cambridge, 39-56, 119-204.
Morris, S., 1989, “A Tale of Two Cities: The Miniature Frescoes from Thera and the Origins of Greek Poetry, AJA 98, 511-535.
Price, S.R.F., 1985, Ritual and Power: The Roman Imperial Cult in Asia Minor, Cambridge, “The Evocations of Imperial Rituals,” 133-248.
Shanks, M., 1997, The Classical Archaeology of Greece: Experience of a Discipline, London, “Cities and Sanctuaries, Art and Archaeology, Roots in the Past,” 21-50.
Snodgrass, A., 1987, An Archaeology of Greece: The Present State and Future Scope of A Discipline, Cambridge, “The Health of a Discipline,” 1-35, “Archaeology and History,” 36-66.
Vermeule, E., 1964, Greece in the Bronze Age, Chicago, 4-9, 82-316.
Vickers, M., and D. Gill, 1994, Artful Crafts: Ancient Greek Silverware and Pottery, Oxford, 1-54, 154-204.
Wallace-Hadrill, A., 1996, Houses and Society in Pompeii and Herculaneum, Princeton, “The Social Structure of the Roman House,” 3-64; Chapter 7, “Luxury and Status,” 143-174.
Zanker, P., 1990, The Power of Images in the Age of Augustus, Ann Arbor, “Roman Empire of Augustus: Imperial Myth and Cult in East and West,” 296-333.

Reference, Topography (Browse)
Richardson, L., Jr., 1992, A New Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome, Baltimore.
Talbert, R.J.A., 2000, Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World, Princeton.
Travlos, J., 1971, Pictorial Dictionary of Ancient Athens, New York.

V. Roman History

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Primary Sources
Livy Bks. 31-33 (commentary by Briscoe)
Polybius Bk. 6 (commentary by Walbank)
Cassius Dio, Roman History Bks. 53-55 (commentary by Rich)
Augustus, Res Gestae (commentary by Volkmann, Brunt & Moore, and/or Scheid)
Velleius Paterculus (commentary by Woodman)
Pliny, Epistulae Bk. 10 (commentary by Sherwin-White, but cf. also W. Williams)
Tacitus, Histories Bk. 1 (commentary by Chilver and/or Heubner) or Germania (commentary by Anderson, or Lund, or Rives)
Suetonius, Claudius (commentary by Hurley)
Historia Augusta, Hadrian (commentary by Benario)

Secondary Readings
A. This first group of readings is designed to provide a basic understanding of some of the more important issues in the history of Rome, again, through the early imperial period.

T.J. Cornell, The Beginnings of Rome. Italy and Rome from the Bronze Age to the Punic Wars (c.1000-264 BC). London: Routledge 1995. pp. 1-118 [The early history of Rome, what can be known, and what not.]
H.I. Flower (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to the Roman Republic. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 2004. Esp. parts 1, 2, and 3. [Some of the main issues in the history of the Republic.]
William V. Harris, War and Imperialism in Republican Rome 327-70 BC. Oxford: Clarendon Press 1979. esp. pp. 1-175. [The classic, and still best, account of how Rome’s empire was created.]
Andrew Lintott, The Constitution of the Roman Republic. Oxford: Clarendon Press 1999. pp. 1-146 & 163-232. [An overview of the essential governmental structures of the Republic.]
Robert Morestein-Marx, Mass Oratory and Political Power in the Late Roman Republic. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 2004. [Was the Republic most essentially a democracy, or some form of aristocracy?]
Ronald Syme, The Roman Revolution. Oxford: Clarendon Press 1939. [The classic account of Augustus.]
Werner Eck, The Age of Augustus. 2nd ed. Malden: Blackwell 2007. [The best, brief, up-to-date account of Augustus.]
F.G.B. Millar, The Emperor in the Roman World. Ithaca: Cornell University Press 1977. pp. 1- 549 [The most essential account of the imperial system of government.]
Andrew Wallace-Hadrill, “Civilis princeps: Between Citizen and King” JRS 72 (1982) 32-48. [An absolutely crucial portrayal of what it took to be a ‘good’ emperor.]
J.E. Lendon, Empire of Honour. The Art of Government in the Roman World. Oxford: Oxford University Press 1997. pp. 1-175. [Probably the most important element in what made the imperial system of government/society work.]
Matthew Roller, Constructing Authority. Aristocrats and Emperors in Julio-Claudian Rome. Princeton: Princeton University Press 2001. pp. 127-287. [An account of how people shaped for themselves an understanding of their new system of government.]
Clifford Ando, Imperial Ideology and Provincial Loyalty in the Roman Empire. Berkeley: University of California Press 2000. pp. 206-412 [An attempt to see why the Roman Empire was stable, and did not collapse much sooner than it might have.]
Greg Woolf, Becoming Roman. The Origins of Provincial Civilization in Gaul. Cambridge:Cambridge University Press 1998. [What did it mean to be ‘Roman’? Who were the ‘Romans’?]
W. Scheidel, I. Morris, and R. Saller (eds.), The Cambridge Economic History of the Greco-Roman World. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 2007. Introduction. [A basic understanding of the workings of the Roman economy.]
M. Peachin (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Social Relations in the Roman World. New York: Oxford University Press 2011. Introduction. [A general grasp of the chief issues in social history, as well as the development of this field.]

B. This next group of readings contains valuable research tools that you should familiarize yourself with. Any exam questions on these things would attempt to ascertain that you could employ these works in your research.

Sources: Papyri and Inscriptions:

Roger S. Bagnall (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Papyrology. New York: Oxford University Press 2009.
H.-A. Ruprecht, Kleine Einführung in die Papyruskunde. Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft 1994.
L. Keppie, Understanding Roman Inscriptions. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press 1991.
J. Bodel (ed.), Epigraphic Evidence. Ancient History from Inscriptions. London: Routledge 2001.

Some Basic Reference Tools:

T.R.S. Broughton, The Magistrates of the Roman Republic. 3 vols. Cleveland: Case Western 1951-86.
Dietmar Kienast, Römische Kaisertabelle. Grundzüge einer römischen Kaiserchronologie. 2nd ed. Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft 1996.
Prosopographia Imperii Romani. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter 1933-. The second edition of this work has now gone as far as gentilicia beginning with the letter T. Otherwise, there is the first edition.
The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire [AD 260-641]. 3 vols. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 1971-92
S.B. Platner & T. Ashby, A Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome. Oxford: Oxford University Press 1929.
E. M. Steinby (ed.), Lexicon Topographicum Urbis Romae 6 vols. Rome: Edizioni Quasar 1993-.
R.J.A. Talbert (ed.), Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World. Princeton: Princeton University Press 2000.

VI. Greek and Roman Thought

(Science, Religion, & Philosophy) (download as PDF)

Primary Sources
Presocratics: Daniel Graham, The Texts of Early Greek Philosophy (2 vols., Cambridge University Press, 2010).
Plato, Euthyphro, Crito, Symposium, Protagoras.
Hippocrates, Airs, Waters, and Places.
Aristotle, Categories, Physics 1, Nicomachean Ethics 1, 8, 10
Cicero, De natura deorum 1, Tusculan Disputations
Lucretius, De rerum natura 1, 5
Seneca: Brad Inwood, Selected Philosophical Letters (Oxford University Press, 2007)
Mary Beard, John North, and Simon Price, Religions of Rome, vol. 2: A Sourcebook (Cambridge University Press, 1998)

Secondary Sources
Walter Burkert, Greek Religion, Archaic and Classical (Blackwell, 2002)
G.E.R. Lloyd, Magic, Reason, and Experience: Studies in the Origins and Development of Greek Science (Cambridge University Press, 1979)
Gregory Vlastos, Plato's Universe (University of Washington Press, 1975)
Christopher Shields, Aristotle (Routledge, 2007)
Christopher Rowe and Malcolm Schofield, The Cambridge History of Political Thought (Cambridge University Press, 2000)
A. A. Long, Hellenistic Philosophy: Stoics, Epicureans, Skeptics (2nd ed., University of California Press, 1986)
John Scarborough, Roman Medicine (Cornell University Press, 1970)
Mary Beard, John North, and Simon Price, Religions of Rome, vol. 1: A History (Cambridge University Press, 1998)

Classic Modern Approaches
Bruno Snell, The Discovery of the Mind (trans. Thomas Rosenmeyer, Harpers, 1953)
E.R. Dodds, The Greeks and the Irrational (University of California Press, 1951)
Terence Irwin, Classical Thought: A History of Ancient Philosophy vol. 1 (Oxford University Press, 1989)