Syllabus [1]
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Instructor: Professor Dan Curley
Office: 210 Ladd Hall
Hours: MWF 11:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.
Extension: 5463


Overview. The Aeneid, the story of the flight of the hero Aeneas from Troy to Italy, is considered Vergil’s masterpiece, perhaps even the greatest poem ever written in Latin.

In this course students will read all of Aeneid book 1 in Latin, and parts of other books as well, in order to maintain and strengthen their foundation in the language. Furthermore, book 1 will serve as a formal introduction to Latin poetry, especially epic, if not an introduction to Vergil himself.

Various approaches to the poem will be explored—for example, as mythical narrative, as Augustan propaganda, as a Homeric sequel. Towards this end, students will read the entire poem in English, and discuss the various literary, historical, and social issues that must inform one's reading.



Objectives. The specific goals for this course are as follows:

  • to engage advanced Latin grammar, syntax, and vocabulary;
  • to develop an appreciation for the composition and style of Latin poetry;
  • to understand the content, form, scope and structure of the Aeneid;
  • to see epic poetry as a way of addressing historical and cultural concerns

Furthermore, students will obtain and exercise the following skills:

  • to regard literature critically; that is, to evaluate and analyze it with sensitivity and precision;
  • to communicate critical thinking in oral presentations and written essays; and
  • to engage in and to facilitate group discussions and activities.
© 1999 Skidmore College Department of Classics