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Life in the Department

The Classics Department is a true community of scholars, a place where students and faculty come together to grow intellectually.  The faculty is devoted to nurturing students in a supportive and often fun, yet academically rigorous, atmosphere.  Professors regularly hold classes in their offices, offer independent studies to fit the needs of the students, and open their homes to them for departmental activities.  You will often find Classics students studying and hanging out in the Classics Lounge.  If you are interested in joining this community, come talk to one of the faculty.  Or better yet, talk to the students to get their take.


The Boukrania are up!

For those who don't know the story:  Boukrania (ox-skulls left over from sacrifice, with a cornucopia-type garland strung between them) are a common artistic theme in Roman art (see the attached image of what the inside of the Ara Pacis in Rome would have looked like painted. Looking at this, I realize that we need to add some ribbons to the horns and somehow make them flutter on the wall. We're on it.). So, one day, Calix O'Hara '17 (Classical Civilization and History, Fulbright Research scholar in Belgium)) says "My uncle has a slaughterhous, I bet he could get us some ox-heads." And we say, "Okay." So Calix has two ox-heads shipped to the Loyola postoffice, where they arrive in boxes that are kind of drippy and smelly (yikes!). They were then shipped off to Dave Rivers in Biology who works on necrophagous flies, that is, flies that eat corpses and dead animals. The skulls lived on the roof of the biology building for about a year as Dr. Rivers's flies did their work. Then another year in the sun, drying out. Finally, Kelly Mueller '18 (Classics, Ph.D. student in HS at Indiana University) and some other majors shellacked the skulls and gilded the horns and figured out where they should go in the lounge. One picture shows Kelly and Santino Casola '21 (Classics, J.D. student at Cardozo School of Law) working that out. Maintenance has just hung them on the walls, and they are a fine, fine addition to the Classics lounge. 



Every Fall, Classics holds a recruiting event for first- and second-year students to get together to learn about the community and opportunities in the department and to get to know the professors and students. In past years we have held the dinner at a restaurant. This past Fall we held it in the courtyard of the Humanities building where it was (we think) equally festive.

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Each Spring, the department holds a party to celebrate our graduating majors and minors. At this party we also watch hilarious TV, movie, and advertisement clips about the Ancient World. This year we didn't do that because the party came immediately after "The Dark Side: Scenes from Seneca and Shakespeare" where students in Dr. Miola's Shakespeare and Seneca classes performed scenes from plays of those masters. For the Seneca scenes, the Latin students performed their own translations! you can see our own Robbie Buhite still in costume from the performance at the party. The party was held partly in our lovely seminar room.

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All upper-level Latin and all Greek courses are held in the seminar room which was painted by Classics majors and minors several years ago. Sharp eyes will recognize 1) an homage to Monty Python’s Life of Brian, 2) frescoes from Augustus Caesar’s wife Livia’s villa, 3) frescoes from the so-called “Queen’s megaron” from the Minoan palace at Knossos, 4) the Nike of Samothrace, and 5) Herakles and the Lernaean hydra.

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But the Classics Lounge is where the daily activities take place. Students have space to study, a microwave to warm their lunches, a small library to use, and even a bust of the Greek poet Sappho to leave offerings to before exams. Classics Majors and Minors painted the lounge, too, in Pompeian red, with faux Corinthian pilasters and a rendition of Raphael's School of Athens peopled by members of the department.

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These pictures are of old parties in Dr. Walsh's and Dr. Taylor's homes

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Bob Dylan 101: A Harvard Professor Has the Coolest Class on Campus

Read the NY Times article Dylan and the Classics about Bob Dylan as a professor

Contact Us

Dr. Martha Taylor
Department Chair
Humanities Building, Room 321b

Nadine Fenchak
Program Assistant
Humanities Building, Room 322A