Latin for the enlightened: on the 10th anniversary of ABC’s Lost

Recently we reached the 10th anniversary of the premiere of ABC’s blockbuster series Lost (created by J. J. Abrams). One of the pleasures of the series, for a Classicist: spoken Latin!

When some of the survivors time-travel back to the 1970s on the island, Sawyer and Juliet encounter proto-”Others”, led by Charles Widmore and Eloise Hawking (parents-to-be of Lost physicist Daniel Faraday). In order to prove her “Other” bona fides, Juliet addresses them in Latin to gain their trust. An astonished Sawyer asks “Who taught you Latin?” She replies, “Others 101. Gotta learn Latin. Language of the enlightened.” (Episode 5.3, “Jughead”)

Juliet Lost Latin

Leslie Knope will save AP Latin!

Parks & Recreation‘s Leslie Knope is famous for her super-intense dedication to the well-being of her fellow Pawneeans. When the school board wanted to save money by cancelling senior prom, she came to the rescue. Equally important, when they wanted to cut AP Latin, she volunteered to teach it!

Leslie Knope

“Which reminds me,” she muses, “I need to learn Latin.”

So say we all, Leslie!


Want to be a Lawyer? Start by Being a Classics Major

Derek Muller, a professor at Pepperdine University School of Law, recently studied the correlation between LSAT and GRE scores and undergraduate majors.

His finding? Classics majors ranked at the very top of majors, with the highest LSAT and GRE scores!

So if you are looking to go to law school, you simply cannot do better than to major in Classics!

For Muller’s report, see his blog at

Summer Field School: Excavate at Akko in Israel

Akko -- Three ImagesWould you like to take a 2-credit archaeological excavation course (CLCV 300) this summer? The link to the Trinity website for the dig is The precise fee has not yet been determined, but will probably be around $6000 and includes tuition, room, all meals (unless you choose to eat out occasionally at one of Akko’s many great restaurants), field trips, equipment, supplemental insurance, laundry, sheets, towels, cleaning, and the end-of-season party at local restaurant. We stay at the Israeli Naval Academy in dorm rooms that are air-conditioned quads, each with a private bathroom.Photo from Evan Taylor -- Jesse and Zach at Dinner

You might also like to look at our photographer’s slideshow from this past summer:

Akko — Acre in the Middle Ages — is one of the oldest continuously inhabited sites in the world. It has yielded material dating from the early Bronze Age through Greek and Roman antiquity and the Middle Ages to the present.

2014 dates:
Student arrival date at Nautical Academy: Sunday June 29th (departing from the US on Saturday June 28th) Student departure date from Nautical Academy: Saturday July 26th.

For questions, contact Martha Risser (

Collapse at Pompeii

Down Pompeii: emergency meeting called after collapses in ancient city

Reuters in Rome, Sunday 2 March 2014 11.32 EST

Damaged tomb wall in Pompeii

The damaged wall of a tomb at the ancient ruins of Pompeii, near Naples in southern Italy.
Photograph: Mario Laporta/AFP/Getty Images

Italy‘s culture minister demanded explanations on Sunday after more collapses this weekend in the ancient Roman city of Pompeii raised concerns about the state of one of the world’s most treasured archaeological sites…. read on here.

The Atlantic reports: “Friendship Starts in Latin Class”

Friendship Starts in Latin Class

(Nov 20 2013)

…[In] A recent study published in the American Journal of Sociology…Researchers Kenneth A. Frank, Chandra Muller, and Anna S. Mueller found that classes have a tremendous impact on high-school students’ social lives…The study analyzed survey data from 3,000 students at 78 schools across the United States and found that classes have a greater impact on friendship formation than sports or other after-school activities.

The study also found that friendships tend to form in smaller, more unusual classes: in Latin class or band, for example, rather than gym or a geometry course that all students are required to take. Students enroll in these electives because of they’re interested in the subject, which gives them common ground with the other students in the class.

“At that point, we’ve got kind of a little group, a little niche in the school,” said Frank. “We’ve got a set of unusual common interests, so those are very potent potential friends.”

Read on here.

Summer study abroad in Greece

The Department of Classics at the University of Maryland, College Park, is sponsoring a summer study abroad program in Greece from June 3-21, 2014, directed by Prof. Del Chrol of Marshall University ( and Jacquelyn Clements of Johns Hopkins University ( The course is open to all undergraduates and upon completion earns 3 credits. Based in Athens, we will travel to sites in Attica and the Peloponnese such as Eleusis, Corinth, Mycenae, Olympia, and Delphi, as well as the island of Paros. The program focuses on the history and archaeology of Greece with particular emphasis on key issues – intellectual, artistic, political, and philosophical – confronting Athens during the 5th century B.C.

The application deadline is March 1; more information can be found at