Welcome from the Chair

For more than a century the Department of the Classics at Harvard University has been at the forefront of research on the language, literature, history, archaeology, and other dimensions of the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome. While the Department today retains its traditional emphasis on the study of the Greek and Latin languages, we are driven by a conception of Classics as an interdisciplinary field that benefits from a variety of approaches and methods. In keeping with this vision the research interests of our faculty span a wide range, including language and literature, history, the history of art and archaeology, linguistics, reception studies, philosophy, and the history of science. We believe that the cultural productions of Greek and Roman civilization are worthy of study both in their own right and for their continuing, vital relevance to the world we live in today.

If you study Classics as an undergraduate at Harvard, you'll become familiar with at least one of the ancient languages and learn how to handle complex evidence, while acquiring an appreciation for key aspects of the cultural legacy of two of the civilizations that have most shaped the modern world. Most of our concentrators pursue non-academic careers in fields such as medicine, law, or business. Graduate students join a cohort of approximately five per year, and are encouraged to pursue a broad range of interests in connection with other programs and departments while deepening their mastery of the Greek and Latin languages.

I hope you will browse the pages on this site to learn more about our students, faculty, current events, and other programs. Please feel free to get in touch with me or with any of my colleagues if you have any questions.

Mark Schiefsky