Graduate Reading Lists

Graduate Reading List for the Ph.D. in Classics, AOC Ancient Philosophy and/or Ancient Science

The following list of Ancient Greek and Roman authors is intended to help students prepare for the Preliminary Doctoral Examination and the following Comprehensive Ph.D. Examinations:


Greek and Latin Literature

Greek and Roman History

Special Topic: Classical Philosophy or Ancient Science


Some of the authors listed will also be read in the required course ‘Ancient Greek and Latin Seminar’. Given that students enter the Ph.D. program with a Master’s degree in hand, it is likely that they will already have read several of the authors listed upon entering the program. Each student, in consultation with his/ her advisor, will choose from the authors listed below and design an individual reading list that is tailored to his/ her plan of study, taking into account exam preparation and previous reading experience.


Latin Authors

Students should read at least 500 OCT pages, selected from the works listed below, in consultation with their advisor.


Apuleius          Met. (Cupid and Psyche)

Augustine        Confessions 1.6-20; 8.6-12

Boethius          De Consolatione Philosophiae

Caesar             Gallic War 1-4, Civil War 1

Catullus           1-51, 64, 76, 101

Cicero             In Catilinam 1, Phillipic 2, De Re Publica (fragments as in Zetzel), De Officiis 1, De Oratore 1, Laelius, Tusculans 1, Select Letters (Shackleton Bailey’s Select Letters), De Finibus 1-3 & 5, Academica 1

Horace            Odes 1,3 ; Epodes 1, 6; Satires 1.1, 6, 9; 2.2, 6; Letters 1.4, 6; 2.1

Juvenal            1, 3, 6, 10

Livy                1, 21

Lucan              1

Lucretius         1-3

Martial            1

Ovid                Met. 1, 4; Fasti 1

Petronius         Cena Trimalchionis 26-72

Plautus            Amphitruo, Miles

Pliny the Younger       Select Letters

Propertius        1

Seneca             De Ira; De Beneficiis I-II; De Tranquillitate Animi ; Letters 51, 56, 79,

84, 86, 88, 114, 122

Tacitus            Annales 1-4, Historiae 1, 5

Virgil              Aeneid, Bucolics, Georgics 4



Ancient Greek Authors

Students should read at least 500 OCT pages, selected from the works listed below, in consultation with their advisor.


Aeschylus       Oresteia (Agamemnon, Eumenides)

Apollonius      Conic Sections

Archimedes     The Method of Mechanical Theorems, On the Sphere and Cylinder

Aristophanes   Clouds, Frogs

Aristotle          Categories 1-5, De Interpretatione, Topics 1, Posterior Analytics (select passages), Metaphysics (select passages), Physics (select passages), De Anima, Generation of Animals 1,2; Generation and Corruption 2, Meteorology 1, 4; De Caelo 1, 2; Nicomachean Ethics (select passages)

Demosthenes  Philippics 1

Diogenes Laertius 7, 10

Epicurus          Letters to Herodotus & Menoeceus

Euclid              Elements 1, 4; Optics, Phaenomena

Euripides         Medea, Hippolytus, Bacchae

Galen              On the Natural Faculties 1, On the Uses of the Parts 1, On the Sects for Beginners

Herodotus       1, 6, 7, 8

Hesiod             Theogony 1-239

Homer             Iliad, Odyssey

Lyric Poetry:   Most texts in D. Campell (Greek Lyric Poetry 2nd ed.- skip Callinus, Phocylides, Demodocus, Pratinas, Timocreon, Praxilla, Carmina Popularioa, Scolia), newly found poems of Archilochus, Sappho, Simonides

Lysias              Against Eratosthenes

Menander        Dyskolos

Plato                Apology, Crito, Euthyphro, Laches, Protagoras (select passages), Meno, Gorgias, Phaedo, Republic (select passages), Timaeus (select passages), Parmenides, Theaetetus (select passages), Sophist (select passages), Philebus, Laws 10

Plotinus           Enneads 1.4, 4.8, 5.1

Plutarch           Lives of Pericles, Cicero

Presocratics     B fragments Anaximander, Anaximenes, Heraclitus, Parmenides, Zeno, Empedocles, Democritus, Anaxagoras

Ptolemy, Syntaxis 1, 10, Optics 5, Harmonics 1

Sextus Empiricus        Outlines of Pyrrhonism 1

Sophocles        Ajax, Antigone, Oedipus Rex

Theophrastus, De Causis Plantarum 1

Thucydides     1-2.70, 5.84-7

Xenophon       Memorabilia 1, Hellenica 1