About the Department

Classics is the traditional name for the field that encompasses the ancient Greek and Roman worlds – their intertwined histories, languages, literatures, and cultures. Our department embraces the responsibilities and possibilities of Classics in the twenty-first century, seeking to understand the ancient societies as they were and to bring new questions, tools, and participants into the field.

Research & Teaching

Our faculty are devoted scholars and teachers. Like our colleagues across the Humanities, and often in collaboration with them, we explore issues of rhetoric, aesthetics, power, gender, religion, education, and cultural change – all in connection to the ancient Mediterranean world. Our research projects shed light on the ways ancient people lived, connected with one another, and sought to make a mark on the world. In our undergraduate, terminal M.A., and Ph.D. programs, our students learn to use the tools of Classics research to pursue the big questions that inspire them – both in our courses and in mentored and collaborative projects of their own.


All enthusiasts of the ancient Greek and Roman cultures, and all those who have not yet had an opportunity to learn about them, can benefit from the department’s events and outreach programs. We host many lectures and events that are open to the public*, visit meetings of local groups to speak about our research, and run programs for school groups exploring the ancient world. 

*Please be aware of the university's current rules regarding campus visitors and events. In-person outreach with school groups is suspended until further notice.


Why Classics?

Timothy Moore, the John and Penelope Biggs Distinguished Professor of Classics, shares the joys and practical benefits of majoring in Classics and discusses the many opportunities available to Classics majors at WashU. Alums Joshua Trosch (LA'15) and Sarah Brophy (LA'08) join him to discuss their experiences in the department and what they've taken away from their studies

Tom Keeline becomes the Latin voice of North American Classical Studies

Tom Keeline becomes the Latin voice of North American Classical Studies

Three students win Classics Department travel awards

Three students win Classics Department travel awards

In my career in public policy, I have found myself constantly using the skills I learned as a Classics student at WashU ... I often find myself thinking back to how the Attic orators framed their legal arguments, or how ancient leaders like Kleisthenes transformed social structures and systems. My training at WashU helped me hone my reading comprehension and rhetoric, too. While the arguments I read aren't written in ancient Greek anymore, my classical education has proven critical to my personal and professional development.

―Chase SackettManager of Higher Education portfolio, Laura and John Arnold Foundation; JD, Yale Law School

Support Programs in Classics

Your financial contributions help support student experiences and programming. Donations are much appreciated and always put to good use.

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