Required and Recommended Texts (read the “NOTE” at the bottom!)


Secondary Sources:


Frost, Frank J.  Greek Society.  (N.Y.: Wadsworth or D.C. Heath, 4th or 5th eds. through 2006 are acceptable) ISBN 9780669416954 or 9780669110210 or various others depending on edition. Highly recommended but no longer required.  [NOTE: You will have to purchase this used either through the bookstore or via to avoid paying $100 for an new copy of an edition that is readily available used for $1.00 (one dollar) plus shipping.]  If you can get a copy of Frost and read the first three chapters (pages 1-63 in my fourth edition), you will start the semester with a much clearer sense of the culture whose literature we will begin reading. 


Robert Graves, The Greek Myths (N.Y.: Viking, 2011) ISBN 9780140171990 Required or buy Hamilton, below.  [For English majors and other advanced students who want to know which classical authors tell which versions of the myths. Graves annotates his summaries.  Hamilton, below, is a synthesized single narrative that obscures the myths’ complex sources, but it’s a faster route to the most commonly received version of a given myth, if not better one.]


Edith Hamilton, Mythology, (N.Y.: Signet, 1971) ISBN 9780316341516, 9780451608062 Required or buy Graves, above.  Apparently this text is out of copyright but any edition will be the same.) [For beginning students only or those reading only for pleasure.]


Primary Sources (recommended translations, in syllabus order, including two required epic translations, ditto):

Apostolos N. Athanassakis, tr., The Homeric Hymns, 2nd Ed.  (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 2004)  ISBN 9780801879838


Aeschylus, The Oresteia: Agamemnon; The Libation Bearers; The Eumenides, tr. Robert Fagles (N.Y. : Penguin, 1984)

            ISBN 9780140443332


Sophocles, Sophocles I: Oedipus The King, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone, tr. David Grene (Chicago: U. Chicago P, 1991)  ISBN 9780226307923


Euripides, Euripides I: Alcestis, The Medea, The Heracleidae, Hippolytus, ed. David Grene, tr. Rex Warner et al., (Chicago: U. Chicago P., 1955)  ISBN 9780226307800


Aristophanes, Lysistrata and Other Plays, [Penguin Classics] (N.Y., Addison Wesley, 1973, rev. ed. 2002)  ISBN 9780140448146


Richard Lattimore, Greek Lyrics, [Phoenix Books] (Chicago: U Chicago P, 1960)  ISBN 9780226469447


Homer, The Odyssey of Homer, tr. Robert Fitzgerald (N.Y.: Farrar Straus & Giroux, 1998) ISBN 9780374525743  [A REQUIRED TRANSLATION]


Catullus, The Poems of Catullus, tr. Charles Martin (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1989)

            ISBN 9780801839269


Horace, Satires and Epistles, tr. Niall Rudd (N.Y.: Penguin, rev. 2005) ISBN 9780140455083


Juvenal,  The Sixteen Satires, tr. Peter Green (N.Y.: Penguin, rev. 1974)  ISBN 9780140447040


Longus, Daphnis and Chloe, tr. Robert McCail (N.Y.: Oxford, 2009)  ISBN 9780199554959


Ovid, Metamorphoses, tr. David Raeburn (N.Y.: Penguin, 2004) ISBN 9780140447897


Virgil, The Aeneid, tr. Robert Fitzgerald (N.Y.: Knopf Doubleday, 1990)  ISBN  9780679729525  [A REQUIRED TRANSLATION]


NOTE!: All of the Greek and Latin original texts date from thousands of years before the notion of “copyright.”  Translations you encounter on the Internet may be hundreds of years old or at least out of copyright, themselves.  For the bare bones of the story (who did what to whom), these versions are nearly indistinguishable from one another, but their language will tend to be Victorian British English, quaint, prudish, and unexciting.  The print translations I ordered for the bookstore represent the best, most affordable current translations I could locate.  Some have considerable merit as literature in English. 


 Print Editions (and how to acquire them cheaply):

            Resourceful students should be able to purchase used copies of all of these editions for far less . by searching used book sellers’ catalogues using the advanced search function at  Search for “lowest total price” so you don’t get soaked on shipping fees for an otherwise “lowest price” copy.  The list price for all copies totals $198 if you buy Graves or $190 if you buy Hamilton.  The ABEBooks lowest total price (as of 6/8/12) was $99 if you buy Graves or $87 if you buy Hamilton.  Especially because the play editions contain other relevant plays you can read on your own or refer to in research, they are a great way to build a classical library for later reference (and one that does not depend on batteries or Internet connections).  If you use the ISBN number (with out "ISBN"!) in the keyword search to go quickly to the right editions.

            In addition to either Hamilton or Graves on mythology, the only print editions I insist that you buy are the Robert Fitzgerald translations of Homer’s Odyssey and Virgil’s Aeneid.  We will spend almost exactly half the semester reading these two major works, and having everyone reading the same translation will help us think about poetic style, both in the translation and in the original.  Original language texts on the Perseus Digital Library site will occasionally be used to test Fitzgerald’s rendering of key terms from the Greek and Latin, but ordinarily we will not attempt to do more than a good structuralist reading of the characters, settings, and actions of each work, an immensely rewarding task and an essential introduction to any further study you might undertake.


Free Online Editions:

            The Loeb Editions, published over a century by Harvard University Press, are now long out of copyright and many but not all are available online at (  The original Loeb editions were facing-page parallel text editions (Greek or Latin / English), but the pop site, Theoi, has only digitized the English versions.  The Library has print copies of all the Loeb  editions--consult the catalog's "Advanced Search" function and type in the author, title, and "Loeb" in a third search line to weed out the rest.  The Perseus Digital Library editions are also free, also can be arranged in parallel text, and each and every the Greek and Latin word is hyperlinked to a modern English dictionary definition.  Just click on the most likely word and see what the ancient author was saying before your translator got between you (  The venerable M.I.T. Internet Classics Archive offers free online texts of most of our authors, mostly nineteenth-century translations (