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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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.


LECTURE- Thursday, October 22, 2015

"War and Wine: Archaeological Contributions to Ancient Greek Military History"

Dr. Mark Lawall, University of Manitoba

Co-sponsored by the Archaeological Institute of America, Pittsburgh Society

4:00 PM, 221 Cathedral of Learning



Eta Sigma Phi

Learn more about the Classics honorary society for students of Latin and/or Greek.
Dr. Harry Avery is the faculty advisor for Eta Sigma Phi. We sincerely thank him for all the years of guidance and wisdom he has generously given.

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).



Congratulations to Zachary C. Herbster, Classics major, who was awarded the David C. Frederick Award from the Honors College!


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", is scheduled to come out by midsummer 2015.

Classics faculty-Dr. Possanza, Dr. Bromberg, Dr. Newell, Dr. Avery, Dr. Hoenig and Dr. Jones

Our thanks to him for almost 50 years of service, dedication, teaching and leadership. 

Dr. Avery retired and we wish all of life's best! 

Quod Bonum Faustum Felix Fortunatumque Sit!

Dr. Avery with students, Antony Freishyn-Chirovsky, Sophia Taborski, Dr. Harry Avery, David Young and Zachary Herbster



Dr. Christina Hoenig just published an article with DeGruyter - 'Timaeus Latinus. Calcidius and the Creation of the Universe', Rhizomata 2/1 (2014). 


Dr. John Newell recently published a paper ("Probablilities Involving Directions Similarities") in The Mathematical Scientist volume 39 issue 1 (June 2014)  pages 37-44. The journal is published by the Applied Probability Trust which operates out of the University of Sheffield in the UK, see http://appliedprobability.org/
Here is the link to read the article (it will require the reader to subscribe or log in): ): http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true

Medieval Latin Reading Group (2015)

Over the past year, the Medieval Latin Reading Group has become a site of energy and community for medievalists and Latinists at Pitt and the larger community. Last year's group had faculty from a few surrounding regional colleges, an independent scholar, a high school Latin teacher, and an emerita professor from Penn State, in addition to Pitt faculty, grad students, and the occasional undergrad. So the group is not only interdisciplinary, but also interprofessional and multigenerational.

The group also represents a wide range of Latin competency, from my co-leader Bruce Venarde, the editor and translator of the Dumbarton Oaks edition of Benedict's Rule, to Ph.D. students in their first year of undergrad Latin and rusty professors. We are a very supportive group, with a no-shame ethos. We spend the first hour of every fortnightly meeting on assigned, prepared passages (however much you feel comfortable preparing), and the second hour sight-reading, for those who feel comfortable with it. 

This semester the MLRG is generously sponsored by the Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the Humanities Center. 

Those interested in more information can contact Ryan McDermott, Assistant Professor of Medieval Literature and Culture in the Dept. of English at mcdermott.pitt.@gmail.com.


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.


You can now "Like" us on Facebook!

The University of Pittsburgh Department of Classics now has a Facebook page.


 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. You may also stop by the department for a study abroad brochure.
New this past summer- Pitt in Greece Program!  










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

University of Pittsburgh, Department of Classics
1518 Cathedral of Learning
4200 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15260
[P] 412-624-4493
[F] 412-624-4419


Lectures, Conferences and Symposia:


The Department of Classics Presents the Following Lecture


Lee Fratantuono

     Ohio Wesleyan University


“Virgil's Mars and the Crafting of Roman Identity


The Roman god of war plays a subtle and important role in the narrative of Virgil's Aeneid.  Through the course of his epic, Virgil employs the father of Romulus and the Roman people as a key divine figure in his unfolding of the death of the old Troy and the advent of Rome.



Dr. Fratantuono specializes in Latin poetry, imperial Greek verse and Roman history. Among his numerous publications are his recent books Madness Transformed: A Reading of Ovid’s Metamorphoses (2011); Madness Triumphant: A Reading of Lucan’s Pharsalia (2012); and A Reading of Lucretius’ De Rerum Natura (2015). 


Friday, October 23, 2015

3:00 p.m.

208A Cathedral of Learning




conference/lecture news


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."


Dr. Edwin D. Floyd will present a lecture, "The Place of Homer in the Study of Beginning Ancient Greek" at the 60th Annual Conference of the International Linguistic Association, New York, April 26. 2015


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




Dr. Edwin D. Floyd presented a lecture ( "Indo-European and Homer's 'delicate feasting of dogs, of all birds' (Iliad 1.5)") at the International Linguistic Association in New York City, on March 14, 2015.



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