1.Classical Studies is understood as the study of the civilisations of classical Greece and Rome without the study of the classical languages, Greek and Latin. While the study of any civilisation is recognised to be educationally beneficial, the particular case for including classical studies in the curriculum of New Zealand secondary schools rests on two main grounds:

(i)The historical importance of classical civilisation in the cultural tradition of Western Europe which is an important part of contemporary New Zealand culture. In classical Greece and Rome are to be found the origins of much of our art, science, literature, law, philosophy, politics and religion. Knowledge of the sources and development of a cultural tradition is essential to its continuing vitality.

(ii)The intrinsic quality and interest of the products of classical civilisation. The Greeks and Romans produced works of the intellect and creative imagination which are recognised to be of the very highest quality and which can still evoke a strong and enriching response in New Zealand school students.

2.Classical studies is a “multi-disciplinary” subject, including a number of different types of study, eg history, literature and art, which are normally separated in the curriculum. Students may therefore gain experience of the connections that can exist between different intellectual disciplines.

Aims of the Course

1.To provide students with a knowledge and appreciation of selected areas of Greek and Roman civilisation.

2.To encourage students to make comparisons between classical civilisation and contemporary New Zealand.

3.To provide experience of a variety of different types of subject matter, evidence and argument.

4.To provide a course which will interest and stimulate students of differing abilities and academic backgrounds.

5.To allow teachers reasonable freedom to choose aspects of classical civilisation appropriate to their own and their students’ interests.

6.To provide a progression in the subject from Year 12 to Year 13 while still allowing for students who may wish to begin the subject in Year 13.

Note: Appropriate resources are listed on the NZ Association of Classical Teachers (NZACT) website

Classical Studies Scholarship suggested reading list

The following list is indicative only, and should not be seen as in any way prescriptive.Students may also profit from reading the Teacher’s Guides.These may be ordered from the Department of Classics, University of Otago, Box 56, Dunedin.

Alexander the Great

Arrian, Anabasis
Plutarch, Life of Alexander in The Age of Alexander, London 1973
Quintus Curtius Rufus,
A. B. Bosworth, Conquest and Empire, Cambridge 1998
Paul Cartledge, Alexander the Great, Macmillan 2004
Peter Green, Alexander of Macedon, 356 – 323 BC, Berkeley 1992

Robin Lane Fox, Alexander the Great, London 1973

J. R. Hamilton, Alexander the Great, London 1973
J. Maxwell-O’Brien, Alexander the Great – The Invisible Enemy, London 1994
R. Stoneman, Alexander the Great, London 1997


Suetonius, Life of Augustus in The Twelve Caesars, London 1982
P. A. Brunt and J. Moore, Res Gestae Divi Augusti, Oxford 1967
Werner Eck, Age of Augustus, Blackwells 2000
A.H.M. Jones, Augustus, Norton, 1971
H. H. Scullard, From the Gracchi to Nero, London 1982 (5th ed.)
D. Shotter, Augustus Caesar, London 1991
Ronald Syme, Roman Revolution, Oxford, 1960
A. Wallace-Hadrill, Augustan Rome, London 1991
P. Zanker, The Power of Images in the Age of Augustus, Detroit 1988

Greek vase painting

J. Boardman, Athenian Black Figure Vases, London 1991 (2nd ed.)
J. Boardman, Athenian Red Figure Vases: The Archaic Period, London 1988 (2nd ed.)
J. Boardman, Athenian Red Figure Vases: The Classical Period, London 1989
J. Boardman, The History of Greek Vases, London 2001
T.H. Carpenter, Art and Myth in Ancient Greece, London, 1994
Andrew J. Clark et al, Understanding Greek Vases: A guide to terms, styles and techniques, Los Angeles 2002
R. Osborne, Archaic and Classical Greek Art, Oxford 1998
J. G. Pedley, Greek Art and Archaeology, New Jersey 2002 (3rd ed.)
Tom Rasmussen and Nigel Spivey, Looking at Greek Vases, London 1991
B. A. Sparkes, The Red and the Black, London 1996
Susan Woodford, An Introduction to Greek Art, London 1994

Art of the Roman Empire

Mary Beard and John Henderson, Classical Art: From Greece to Rome, Oxford 2001
Axel Boethius, Etruscan and Early Roman Architecture, New Haven 1987
J. Elsner, Imperial Rome and Christian Triumph, Oxford 1998
D. E. E. Kleiner, Roman Sculpture, Princeton 1992
N. H. Ramage & A. Ramage, Roman Art: Romulus to Constantine, New York 2000
F. Sear, Roman Architecture, London 1982 (pb 1988)
J.B. Ward-Perkins, Roman Imperial Architecture, New Haven 1981
M. Wheeler, Roman Art and Architecture, New York 1964

Aristophanes’ comedies

At least one other play by Aristophanes
P. Cartledge, Aristophanes and his Theatre of the Absurd, Bristol 1990
C.W. Dearden, The Stage of Aristophanes, London 1976
K. J. Dover, Aristophanic Comedy, London 1972
J. R. Green & E. W. Handley, Images of the Greek Theatre, London 1995
D. MacDowell, Aristophanes and Athens, Oxford 1996
K. McLeish, The Theatre of Aristophanes, London 1980
E. Segal (ed.) Oxford Readings in Aristophanes, Oxford 1996

Virgil’s Aeneid
All 12 books of Virgil’s Aeneid
W. A. Camps, An Introduction to Vergil’s Aeneid, Oxford 1969
M. Findlay, Divine Quest, Auckland 1999
K. W. Grandsen, Virgil: the Aeneid, Cambridge 1990
P. Hardie, Virgil, Oxford 1998
I. McAuslan and P. Walcot (ed.), Virgil, Oxford 1990
S. Quinn, Why Vergil? A Collection of Interpretations, Chicago 2000
R. Deryck Williams, Aeneas and the Roman Hero, Nelson 1973

Juvenal’s Satires
Other Satires by Juvenal
S. M. Braund, Roman Verse Satire, Oxford 1992
R. Coffey, Roman Satire, Bristol 1989 (2nd ed.)
P. Green, introduction to the Penguin text, London 1998
N. Rudd, Themes in Roman Satire, London 1986

Greek Science

R. E. Latham, Lucretius: On the Nature of Things (both text and introduction), London 1951
G. E. R. Lloyd, Greek Science after Aristotle, London 1973

G. E. R. Lloyd, Early Greek Science from Thales to Aristotle, London 1970

T. E. Rihill, Greek Science, Oxford 1999
G. Sarton, A History of Science: Hellenistic Science and Culture, Science Editns 1965


Xenophon, Memorabilia
Aristophanes, Clouds
Plato, Symposium
T. Irwin, Classical Thought, Oxford 1989
M. Parker, Socrates in Athens, London 1973
J.W.Roberts, City of Socrates, London 1998 (2nd ed)
C. C. W. Taylor, R. M. Hare, J. Barnes, Greek Philosophers, Oxford 1999

Roman religion

M. Beard, J. North, S. Price, Religions of Rome, 2 vols (vol. 1: History;
vol. 2: Sourcebook), Cambridge 1998
K. Dowden, Religion and the Romans, Bristol 1992
J. Ferguson, The Religions of the Roman Empire, London 1970
M. Findlay, Roman Religion, Auckland 1999
J. A. North, Roman Religion, Oxford 2000
R. M. Ogilvie, The Romans and their Gods, London 1969
J. Scheid, An Introduction to Roman Religion, Bloomington 2003
H. H. Scullard, Festivals and Ceremonies of the Roman Republic, London 1981
R. Turcan, The Gods of Ancient Rome: Religion in Everyday Life from Archaic to
Imperial Times, Edinburgh 2000
V. Warrior, Roman Religion: A Sourcebook, 2002