University of Pittsburgh



The Department of Classics focuses on the interpretation of the culture and society of Greco-Roman antiquity in the widest sense of those terms. Learn more about us.

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Faculty, students, alumni, and friends gathered on the patio terrace of the University Club on September 2, 2016. A sunny afternoon was complemented with refreshments at one of the most relaxing spots on campus.  Here are some photos.


Archaeological Institute of America, Pittsburgh Chapter

Dr. John Newell is President of the Pittsburgh Society of the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA). The University is host to several yearly lectures of international scholars. Read about forthcoming lectures here.


Eta Sigma Phi

Learn more about the Classics honorary society for students of Latin and/or Greek.

Program in Classics, Philosophy, and Ancient Science

This graduate program is joinly offered by the departments of Classics, Philosophy and History and Philosophy of Science.  Learn more about the Program in Classics, Philosophy, and Ancient Science (CPAS). 


Classics, Philosophy and Ancient Science Greek Reading Group - FALL, 2016

Our Ancient Greek Reading Group is open to graduate students and faculty (and advanced undergraduates) in the Pittsburgh community. We are currently reading Epictetus’ Discourses, a series of teachings of the Stoic philosopher Epictetus, committed to writing in the first century CE.

We meet every Wednesday from 4-5.30pm in Room 1001D of the Philosophy Department, 10th Floor of the Cathedral. Please contact Dr. Christina Hoenig cmh159@pitt.edu for more information.


Medieval Latin Reading Group will meet on alternative Mondays beginning October 10, 2016 from 1:30-3:00 p.m. most probably in the Irish Nationality Room.  If interested in participating, email Dr. William Campbell (whc7@pitt.edu) to state your interest in participating.




Dr. Jacques Bromberg spent four weeks in May and June traveling over 2,000km around Sicily with twelve Pitt undergraduates, as part of the Classics Department’s new study abroad program.


In the spring term 2016, Dr. Christina Hoenig carried out research at the Sorbonne University in Paris, spoke at a conference on Plato’s dialogue Timaeus at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and from there travelled to Dublin, Ireland, where she held a visiting fellowship at the Plato Centre of Trinity College.


Dr. Nicholas F. Jones' completed texts, translations, and commentaries on the major Athenian historians Androtion and Philochoros were uploaded at Brill's New Jacoby-- the updated edition of Felix Jacoby's Die Fragmente der griechischen Historiker.


Dr. Andrew Korzeniewski, who joins the Classics faculty this year as a Visiting Lecturer, was voted Professor of the Month for March 2016 by the Lambda Sigma Honor Society, Pitt’s Sophomore class Honors Society


Dr. Carrie Weaver's monograph, The Bioarchaeology of Classical Kamarina: Life and Death in Greek Sicily, was published by the University Press of Florida in September 2015. Dr. Weaver joins the Classics faculty this year as a Visiting Assistant Professor.


A.W. Mellon Professor Emeritus H.P. Stahl has just completed a major study of Vergil's Aeneid.  The book, entitled "Poetry Underpinning Power: Vergil's Aeneid for Emperor Augustus. A Recovery Study".


CONGRATULATIONS to Classics major and graduate Anjuli Das (A&S 16) on her Fulbright Scholarship to study and teach in Turkey in 2016-17! 


CONGRATULATIONS to recent graduates, Damilola Akapo and Lauren Tragesser on their induction into Phi Beta Kappa.  Damilola is a Molecular Biology major and Classics minor and Lauren is an Anthropology and Chemistry major, Classics minor.


Emeritus Professor Edwin D. Floyd has received a grant of $350 from CAAS (Classical Association of the Atlantic States) to defray expenses in connection with two First Experiences in Research students, Justin Antonuccci and Leo Dornan, who are assisting him in his ongoing research on Homer's presentation of Achilles in the Iliad.   

    Justin Antonucci is comparing the handling of various key words such as "wrath" and "plan" in about twenty different Italian translations of the Iliad, ranging from the 18th through the 21st centuries.

    Leo Dornan's topic is an investigation of the way that Statius' Latin poem, the Achilleid, develops themes, such as the story of Achilles' heel, that are not explicitly dealt with by Homer.

This year's FER Celebration of Research, at which both Justin and Leo will present a poster summarizing their research, will be Friday, April 22, 2016, 2:00 - 5:00 PM, in Connolly Ballroom, Alumni Hall.



New for summer 2016- Pitt in Sicily Program!

Students earn six credits in the Dept. of Classics in this program designed for those interested in the history and archaeology of the ancient Mediterranean.  The rich cultural heritage and sweepig panoramas of Sicily provide the background to an an unforgettable exploration of over 1,000 years of Greek and Roman history and culture.


Study Abroad has some interesting information for Classics majors and the opportunities that exist to enhance their interest in learning and culture. Learn more about the study abroad opportunities for students in Classics.


Classics Majors- There is now a Career Consultant for Classics to help you with career info and internship possibilities.  Contact Anastasia Lopez with Career Development in Room 200 of the William Pitt Union.  Her email is anl88@pitt.edu.



Contact Elizabeth Conforti, our department administrator, for more information.

University of Pittsburgh, Department of Classics
1501 Cathedral of Learning
4200 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15260
[P] 412-624-4494
[F] 412-624-4419


Lectures, Conferences and Symposia:


Classics, Philosophy and Ancient Science Colloquium present

Charles Francis Brittain

    (Professor of Classics and Philosophy, Cornell University)


Monday, October 24, 2016

3:30 p.m.

Babcock Room, 40th Floor, Cathedral of Learning


Wicked good (deinos) hermeneutics:  poetry and philosophy in Plato’s Protagoras 339-47"


This paper argues that Socrates’ notorious reading of Simonides’ Ode to Scopas is designed both to parody a dialectical method of literary interpretation pioneered by Protagoras and to show how this method should be applied to philosophical arguments. The method involves identifying a series of problems in the poem and solving them by a set of lexical ambiguities (familiar to us from Aristotle’s Poetics 25) and a number of paratextual assumptions. But Socrates’ parody of this method turns on lexical ambiguities and paratextual assumptions that mirror the logical fallacies and philosophical assumptions at play in arguments he himself presented earlier in the dialogue. Why is that?




Sara Magrin

    (University of California, Berkeley)


Wednesday, October 26, 2016

3:30 p.m.

G-8 Cathedral of Learning


“Philosophers-Kings and Stoic Stages: Epictetus' Account of the "Starting Points" (aphormai) of Virtue"


It has long been noticed that, while Plato in the Republic explains why justice makes an individual happy, he does not provide a clear account of why justice and virtue in general can motivate an individual to help others and engage in other regarding behavior. Stoic ethics seems to raise a similar problem: while the Stoics maintain that the possession of virtue makes a human being happy, it is not clear why, on their account, virtue should motivate a human being to act in other-regarding ways. By reconstructing Epictetus’ account of the so-called starting points to virtue, I will try to show that he explains both the development of virtue and that of other-regarding behavior by appealing to a set of pre-reflective moral dispositions for which he finds inspiration precisely in Plato’s Republic.



Kim Shelton

    (Director of the Nemea Center for Classical Archaeology, University of California, Berkeley)


Thursday, October 27, 2016

4:30 p.m.

304 Cathedral of Learning


“The Tsountas House Shrine - Early Greek Religion and the Cult Center At Mycenae"


Dr. Shelton will present a history of the Tsountas House Shrine, the earliest known structure of its kind at Mycenae, and its unique and fascinating finds.  The study of the chronological evidence, as well as the signs of religious ritual, give clues to the possible origin of the Cult Center and the course of its evolution through multiple phases of construction, use and destruction.  Of particular interest is the fact that several religious structures existed for a significant period of time prior to the inclusion of the area within the palatial citadel, which indicates a more generally accessible "popular" cult.  Later, a series of shifts in use can be observed through various changes.  Also of interest are the elements of ritual and votive artifacts that shed light on the early development of Greek religion.





conference/lecture news


Dr. Edwin Floyd read a paper "Homer, Odyssey 10.200: Man-eating or Man-slaying?" at the annual meeting of the International Linguistic Association at Hofstra University, March 11-13, 2016.


Zachary C. Herbster, Classics major, attended the Miami University Undergraduate Conference in April, 2015.  His paper "From One Gadfly to Another: The Theological and Moral Influence of Socrates on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr."



CLASS ACTS II: eXPLORING Roman Comedy and its reception

An interdisciplinary conference for Graduate and Undergraduate students organized by the Departments of Classics, University of North Carolinam, Chapel Hill, and the University of Madrid

March 20-21, 2015

University of Pittsburgh






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