Reading List

The works listed below should be read prior to taking the doctoral examination in question. In the case of secondary literature (sections 1, 2, and 3), the student is advised to use the most recent edition. It is a matter of program policy that items for the Greek and Latin Translation Exams are to be taken from the lists provided below (sections 4 and 5). Special arrangements for limited modifications to the Greek and/or Latin reading lists may be made for individual students with the approval of the Graduate Advisor. Please see the Student Handbook for specific rules that concern these modifications as well as for a detailed description of the exams.


  • M. T. Boatwright et al., The Romans from Village to Empire (New York, 2004).
  • T. J. Cornell, The Beginnings of Rome: Italy and Rome from the Bronze Age to the Punic Wars, 1000-264 BCE (London and New York, 1995).
  • M. Crawford, The Roman Republic (Cambridge MA, 1993).
  • C. Wells, The Roman Empire (Cambridge MA, 1992).
  • P. Brown, The World of Late Antiquity from Marcus Aurelius to Muhammad (London, 1971).


  • S. Pomeroy et al., Ancient Greece. A Political, Social, and Cultural History (New York, 2004).
  • R. Osborne, Greece in the Making, 1200-479 (London and New York, 1996).
  • S. Hornblower, The Greek World (London and New York, 2002).
  • G. Shipley, The Greek World after Alexander (London and New York, 2000).

The History of Greek and Roman Literature Examination tests the student's grasp of both primary materials and critical analysis. The Examination will presuppose,inter alia, knowledge of the Greek and Latin reading lists, and is normally taken only after those exams have been passed. For critical analysis, the following secondary sources are highly recommended.

  • A. Diehle, A History of Greek Literature from Homer to the Hellenistic Period (New York, 1994).
  • O. Taplin, Literature in the Greek World (New York, 2001).
  • G. B. Conte, Latin Literature: A History (Baltimore, 1994).
  • S. J. Harrison (ed.), A Companion to Latin Literature (Malden MA, 2005).


Author Work
Apollonius Argonautica, Books 3, 4
Aeschylus Agamemnon, Choephoroe, Eumenides, Prometheus, Persians
Aristophanes Frogs, Lysistrata
Aristotle Politics, Book 1; PoeticsNicomachean Ethics 8, 9
Demosthenes Philippic 3; On the Crown
Euripides Bacchae, Hippolytus, Medea, Trojan Women
Herodotus Books 1, 7 and 8 (Book 2 may be substituted)
Hesiod Theogony, Works and Days
Homer IIiad, Odyssey
Isocrates Panegyricus, Helen
Lysias Orations 1 and 7
Menander Dyscolus
Pindar Olympian 1, 2; Pythian 1, 2, 4
Plato Apology, Phaedo, Symposium, Republic 1, 10
Plutarch Life of Alexander, Caesar
Polybius Book 6
Sophocles Antigone, Oedipus Tyrannus, Electra
Theocritus Idylls 1, 2, 11, 17, 18
Thucydides Histories, Books 1 and 2 (Books 6-7 may be substituted)
Lyric Poets Campbell's edition


Author Work
Ammianus Marcellinus Books 15-16
St. Augustine Confessions, Book 8
Caesar Bellum Gallicum 1; Bellum Civile 1
Catullus All
Cicero All letters in How and Clark (eds.), Cicero: Select Letters (Oxford 1925); In Catilinam 1; Pro Milone 1; In Verrem 1; De Oratore 1; De Republica 1
Horace Odes, Books 1-3; Epistles 2 (including Ars Poetica); Satires 1
Jerome Letters 127 and 128 (Loeb numbering)
Juvenal Satires 1, 3, 6, 10
Livy Books 1 and 2 (Books 20 and 21 may be substituted)
Lucan Book 1
Lucretius Books 1, 5
Martial All Epigrams in Post's edition
Ovid Metamorphoses 1 and 10; Amores 1; HeroidesArs Amatoria
Petronius Cena Trimalchionis
Plautus MenaechmiMiles
Pliny All Letters in Sherwin-White's edition; plus the additional Vesuvius letters (6.20 and 6.31)
Propertius Books 1, 2, 3
Quintilian Book 10
Sallust Bellum Catilinae
Seneca MedeaDe brevitate vitaeTrojan Womenall Letters in Sherwin-White's edition; plus 6.20
Suetonius Augustus
Tacitus Annales, Book 1 ; AgricolaHistories, Book 1 (Book 4 may be substituted)
Terence Andria, Eunuchus
Tibullus Book 1
Vergil Aeneid; Eclogues; Georgics, Books 1 and 4