Joint Concentration in Ancient History (Greek and Roman)

Students whose interest in the Classics is primarily historical in character should consider concentrating in Ancient History (Greek and Roman). Ancient History (Greek and Roman) is a joint honors concentration co-sponsored by the History Department and the Classics concentration. The joint concentration aims to take advantage of the strengths of both concentrations in a balanced way; but the department in which the student chooses to take the senior tutorial will be responsible for making the final determination of honors. The goal of the program is to introduce students to the craft of historical study—the ways historians make sense of the past, and the skills of historical analysis, writing, and research—as well as to promote a critical understanding of the historical experience of ancient societies. In addition to in-depth language study and substantial course work in the history of antiquity, students enrolling in this concentration will do one-half of their tutorial work in the History Department and the other half in the Classics concentration. History 97 introduces students to historical analysis and writing on various themes, while Classics 97 introduces the history, literature and intellectual traditions of ancient Greece and Rome. By taking a History Seminar in the sophomore or junior year, students are introduced to methods of historical research and writing and have the opportunity to conduct in-depth research projects. In the senior year, joint concentrators write an honors thesis, an original work in some aspect of ancient history.

All Ancient History (Greek and Roman) joint concentrators are required to take 14 half-courses, including either Classics 99 or History 99, the senior thesis tutorial.

Concentration Requirements: Ancient History (Greek and Roman)

Classical Language Courses (4 half-courses)

1–4. Four half-courses in Greek and/or Latin.

Additional Coursework (8 half-courses)

5. History 97.
6. Classical Studies 97a (on Greece) or 97b (on Rome).
7. Classics 98, a small group tutorial emphasizing research skills.
8. Classical Studies 112 taught in the Classics Department (for students in the Class of 2016 and later).
9. One half-course in non-Western History.
10. One half-course in modern History.
11–12. Two additional electives within Ancient History.
N.B. One of these four history courses (#9–12) should be a seminar that results in a research paper of at least 20 pages and is completed by the end of the junior year.

Senior Thesis (2 half-courses)

  • Students who wish to pursue a joint concentration in Ancient History (Greek and Roman) must write a Senior Thesis, which also requires enrollment in one of two year-long Senior Thesis Seminars: either History 99 or Classics 99. Students may select either seminar.

Please Note: Two types of courses count toward Ancient History (Greek and Roman) concentration requirements:

  1. Courses listed on courses.my.harvard.edu under “History” and “Classics,” including cross-listed courses; and
  2. Courses taught in the General Education and/or Freshman Seminar Programs by full members of the History or Classics Department Faculty. Students wishing to count such courses toward their concentration requirements should request approval from the relevant Director of Undergraduate Studies.

The joint concentration also regularly accepts credit from both Study Abroad and Advanced Standing toward concentration requirements.

With the exception of certain Freshman Seminars taught by History or Classics faculty (see above), courses taken on a Pass/Fail basis may not be counted for concentration credit.