Students performing Medea, with a set of stairs behind
A performance of Medea by the University Classical Drama Society
(Image Credit: Marcin Szala)
Humanities Division


The academic study of ancient Greek and Roman civilisation - thought, society, language, culture, literature, history, art - spans nearly two millennia (c. 1200 BC to AD 600), and is tightly interwoven with most branches of humanities.

Oxford administers classical studies in two broad segments, ancient history and classical archaeology in one, and Greek and Latin languages and literature in the other. But academically it is the crossovers and synergies between the cultures of the Greek and Roman worlds which form the core of the interests of the Classics Faculty, which also specialises in all the disciplines needed to comprehend these two worlds in their wider context in time and space: the study of language, inscriptions and papyri, of texts preserved in the medieval scribal continuum, of literary form, of material culture and field archaeology, the histories of landscape and of cognition, word and image, scholarship and performance, production, consumption and power, the reception of antiquity in subsequent periods. The crossovers and synergies also situate core Greek and Roman literature and culture in a wider world reaching from Mycenaean palaces to Egypt, Bactria or India.

The Sackler and Bodleian libraries and the Ashmolean Museum are world-class resources for these studies. We have an unusually large and wide-ranging body of scholars and graduates; a packed and varied programme of seminars, and abundant informal interaction, make this an exciting and stimulating community in which to study Classics.


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