BA Classics / Course details

Year of entry: 2022

Course description

Loading
Classics and Ancient History

Our BA Classics course will enable you to study Greek and Latin language and literature while also exploring the political, social and intellectual history of the ancient Greek and Roman civilisations.

You can learn either or both languages from beginner level and tailor your course unit options to focus on Greek or Latin language and literature together with Ancient History, depending on where your interests lie.

There are four possible routes through this course:

  • Route 1  - study both Greek and Latin;
  • Route 2 - Greek focus;
  • Route 3  - Latin focus;
  • Route 4  - combine language study with ancient history and literature units. We offer two versions of this course - one for those with traditional qualifications (e.g. A level) in one or both of Latin and Greek, commencing at an appropriately advanced level and another for those with little or no experience of either language, for which we can offer you courses aimed at complete beginners.

Where appropriate, the texts for literary and historical course units are studied in the original language.

Study with us and you'll also have access to exclusive resources such as the Special Collections of The John Rylands Library (home to papyri, medieval manuscripts and early printed books including very early copies of the Homeric poems) and the Manchester Museum (the University's own on-campus holdings), with its world-class Egyptology collections.

You'll be taught by experts in Greek and Roman language, literature, culture and history. You will be able to choose from course units covering topics such as Latin love poetry, Greek myth, ancient epic and the literature of exile. Optional units are also available in a wide range of topics in Ancient History and Archaeology and in areas as diverse as Greek philosophy and Egyptology. 

Depending on your level of language expertise, you will be able to study some of the texts for your literary and historical course units in the original Greek or Latin.

Special features

Placement year option

Apply your subject-specific knowledge in a real-world context through a placement year in your third year of study, enabling you to enhance your employment prospects, clarify your career goals and build your external networks. 

Study abroad

You may apply to spend one semester studying abroad during Year 2. Exchange partners are offered through the Erasmus Exchange scheme (in Sweden) and the Worldwide Exchange scheme (e.g. USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Singapore).

Explore world-class collections

Enjoy unique opportunities to explore special archived material and carry out research in a wide range of archives, libraries, museums and other research institutions in Manchester and beyond.

You will have exclusive access to the special collections of the John Rylands Library, including papyri, medieval manuscripts and early printed books.

Teaching and learning

The core of most literary and historical course units is provided by lectures, which introduce and survey the main issues, and are supported by small-group tutorials and seminars.

Language classes are taught intensively, with group size capped to encourage participation.

You are encouraged to involve yourself, under guidance, in independent study and original research.

Coursework and assessment

Assessment practices in different course units vary, but our basic aim is to achieve a good balance between formal examinations, continuous assessment, and project work.

Written examinations are held at the end of most courses. The third-year dissertation provides 25% of the total marks for your degree.

Course content for year 1

Route 1: Greek and Latin 

Study five core units covering Greek language, Greek literature (e.g. The Odyssey), Latin language, Latin literature (e.g. Virgil's Aeneid), and either Greek or Roman history (e.g. Archaic Greece; The Roman Republic). 

Study a further course unit from Classics and Ancient History or from the list of Classics-approved units in other disciplines such as Archaeology, History of Art, Middle Eastern Studies, Philosophy and Religions and Theology. 

Route 2: Greek-focussed 

Study three core units covering Greek language, Greek literature (e.g. the Odyssey) and Greek history (e.g. Archaic Greece). 

In addition, you will study two further course units from Classics and Ancient History. 

Study one subject from the list of Classics-approved units, such as those listed above for specialisation in Greek and Latin. 

Route 3: Latin-focussed 

Study three core units covering Latin language, Latin literature (e.g. Virgil's Aeneid) and Roman history (e.g. the Roman Republic). 

Study two further course units from Classics and Ancient History. 

Finally, you will study one subject from the list of Classics-approved units, as listed above for specialisation in Greek and Latin. 

Route 4: Classics and Ancient History 

Study either Latin or Greek at the appropriate level (40 credits if you are beginning the language, 20 credits if you are continuing your language studies), together with 40 credits in Ancient History and 40 credits in Classical Literature. 

Where sufficient credits remain, you can take a further 20 credits in other Classics and Ancient History or approved course units.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Constructing Archaic Greek History CAHE10011 20 Optional
From Republic to Empire: Introduction to Roman History, Society & Culture 218-31BC CAHE10022 20 Optional
The Odyssey CAHE10101 20 Optional
The Making of the Mediterranean CAHE10132 20 Optional
The Story of Britain CAHE10142 20 Optional
Cities and Citizens CAHE10231 20 Optional
Virgil's Aeneid CAHE10422 20 Optional
Introduction to the History and Culture of Pharaonic Egypt CAHE10651 20 Optional
Tomb and Temple: Religion and the Afterlife in Ancient Egypt CAHE10702 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 1 CAHE20151 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 1 CAHE20171 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 1 CAHE30110 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 1 CAHE30120 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 2 CAHE30162 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 2 CAHE30182 20 Optional
Living Latin CAHE30390 20 Optional
Mapping the Medieval ENGL10051 20 Optional
Histories of the Islamic World HIST10171 20 Optional
An Introduction to the Medieval World HIST10262 20 Optional
New Testament Greek RELT10120 20 Optional
Bible in Ancient and Modern Worlds RELT10712 20 Optional
Standing on The Shoulders of Giants: Foundations for Study in The Arts SALC10002 20 Optional
Ice Age to Baroque: Artworks in History SALC10041 20 Optional
Living and Dying in the Ancient World SALC10602 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 24 course units for year 1

Course content for year 2

Route 1: Greek and Latin 

Continue to study courses in Latin and Greek language and literature. 

You can also choose additional course units from Classics and Ancient History or from the list of approved units. 

You can also opt to study a free-choice course unit which can be chosen from a wide range on offer across the University. 

Route 2: Greek-focussed 

Study two courses in Greek language and literature. 

Choose four additional course units - either from available Classics course units or from the list of Classics-approved units. 

You can also opt to study a free-choice course unit which can be chosen from a wide range on offer across the University. 

Route 3: Latin-focussed 

Study two units in Latin language and literature. 

Study four additional course units - either from available Classics course units or from the list of Classics-approved units. 

You can also opt to study a free-choice course unit which can be chosen from a wide range on offer across the University. 

Route 4: Classics and Ancient History 

Study either Latin or Greek at the appropriate level (20 credits), together with 60 credits in Ancient History and Classical Literature course units. 

You will also take another 40 credits in Classics and Ancient History or approved units. 

This includes the option (worth 20 credits) of writing an extended essay of about 6,000 words on a topic of your choosing in Classics.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
The World of Late Antiquity: Europe and the Med from the Severan Dynasty to the Rise of Islam CAHE20021 20 Optional
The Conquering Hero: The Life, Times and Legacy of Alexander The Great CAHE20041 20 Optional
The Roman Empire 31BC - AD235: Rome's Golden Age CAHE20051 20 Optional
Politics and Society in Classical Greece CAHE20062 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 1 CAHE20151 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 1 CAHE20171 20 Optional
The Emergence of Civilisation: Palaces, Peak Sanctuaries, and Politics in Minoan Crete CAHE20222 20 Optional
Roman Love Elegy CAHE20271 20 Optional
Roman Women in 22 Objects CAHE20532 20 Optional
Plato's Dialogues CAHE20551 20 Optional
Athens and Attica CAHE20631 20 Optional
Greek Tragedy CAHE21011 20 Optional
The Roman Outlook: Hellenisation & Roman Values CAHE21432 20 Optional
The Artistic Mind: Graeco-Roman Art and its Reception CAHE23012 20 Optional
Gods, Kings and Heroes: The Poetry of Archaic Greece CAHE24102 20 Optional
Seneca: Philosopher, Politician and Playwright CAHE25012 20 Optional
Education and Schools in the Greek and Roman Worlds CAHE25212 20 Optional
Chariots, Cauldrons and Celts: The Archaeology of the Iron Age in Britain and Ireland CAHE25461 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 1 CAHE30110 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 1 CAHE30120 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 2 CAHE30162 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 2 CAHE30182 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 2 CAHE30210 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 2 CAHE30220 20 Optional
Living Latin CAHE30390 20 Optional
Europe from the Vikings to the Crusades: Violence, Acculturation and Group Formation HIST21141 20 Optional
The Stuff of History: Objects Across Borders, 1500-1800 HIST21152 20 Optional
Histories of the Islamic World HIST21191 20 Optional
Biblical Hebrew RELT20140 20 Optional
New Testament in Greek II RELT20150 20 Optional
Data Analysis and Reasoning in a Digital World SALC20082 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 31 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

Route 1: Greek and Latin 

Complete your study of Latin and Greek language and literature. 

Take a course unit from within Classics and Ancient History or from the list of Classics-approved course units. 

Write a thesis (10,000-12,000 words) on a subject of your choice - the thesis is your chance to carry out your own independent study of the classical past. 

Route 2: Greek-focussed 

Complete your study of Greek language with a final course unit. 

Study four course units either from within Classics and Ancient History or from the list of Classics-approved course units. 

Write a thesis (10,000-12,000 words) on a subject of your choice - the thesis is your chance to carry out your own independent study of the classical past. 

Route 3: Latin-focussed  

Complete your study of Latin language with a final course unit. 

Study four course units either from within Classics and Ancient History or from the list of Classics-approved course units. 

Write a thesis (10,000-12,000 words) on a subject of your choice - the thesis is your chance to carry out your own independent study of the classical past. 

Route 4: Classics and Ancient History 

Study either Latin or Greek at the appropriate level (20 credits), together with 20 credits in Ancient History and 20 credits in Classical Literature course units. 

Write a dissertation of about 10,000-12,000 words (worth 40 credits). 

You will also take another 20 credits in Classics and Ancient History or approved course units.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Classics, Ancient History, Archaeology and Egyptology Dissertation CAHE30000 40 Mandatory
Intensive Greek 1 CAHE20151 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 1 CAHE20171 20 Optional
The World of Late Antiquity: Europe and the Med from the Severan Dynasty to the Rise of Islam CAHE30021 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 1 CAHE30110 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 1 CAHE30120 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 2 CAHE30162 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 2 CAHE30182 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 2 CAHE30210 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 2 CAHE30220 20 Optional
The Emergence of Civilisation: Palaces, Peak Sanctuaries, and Politics in Minoan Crete CAHE30222 20 Optional
Roman Love Elegy CAHE30271 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 3 CAHE30310 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 3 CAHE30320 20 Optional
Living Latin CAHE30390 20 Optional
Plato's Dialogues CAHE30551 20 Optional
Athens and Attica CAHE30631 20 Optional
The Roman Army and the North-West Frontiers CAHE30882 20 Optional
Greek Tragedy CAHE31011 20 Optional
Egypt in the Graeco-Roman World CAHE31401 20 Optional
The Roman Outlook: Hellenisation & Roman Values CAHE31432 20 Optional
The Artistic Mind: Graeco-Roman Art and its Reception CAHE33012 20 Optional
Gods, Kings, and Heroes: The Poetry of Archaic Greece CAHE34102 20 Optional
Seneca: Philosopher, Politician, and Playwright CAHE35012 20 Optional
Education and Schools in the Greek and Roman Worlds CAHE35212 20 Optional
Chariots, Cauldrons and Celts: The Archaeology of the Iron Age in Britain and Ireland CAHE35461 20 Optional
Christ's Knights: Hospitallers and Templars in the Latin East and Beyond HIST31621 20 Optional
Seaborne State? Venice and the East 1150-1550 HIST31861 20 Optional
Culture in Ottoman Society, ca. 1300-1800 HIST31871 20 Optional
Becoming Christian in The Early Middle Ages HIST31952 20 Optional
The Normans between Islam and Byzantium: multicultural encounters in the Mediterranean World HIST31991 20 Optional
Responses to Globalisation, 1500-1700 HIST32021 20 Optional
From Greed to Grandezza: A History of Capitalism from the Renaissance to Modernity (1250s-1900s) HIST32121 20 Optional
Science and Islam RELT30522 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 34 course units for year 3

What our students say

The decision to study Classics at Manchester has been one of the best I've ever made.  

I chose the course because of the huge range of units offered: I've studied everything from Catullus, to Plato, to Roman women.  

The CAHAE department at Manchester also has some of the best names in Classics - John Taylor has been my Latin teacher since first year.  

All the staff here are extremely friendly and supportive, and there is a great community of students too - anyone is welcome to come into the Classics library at any time of day and chat to other students and staff.  

It's an amazing way to get to know people, and to ask your lecturers anything you want to know.

Noa Cebon, Classics BA 

Visiting the open day, I immediately appreciated the independent feel to the course and the freedom it gave me to develop my interests with the numerous different units available.  

I have had an incredible three years while studying Classics here, the lectures are stimulating, and the lecturers are incredibly supportive.  

Most inspiring has been the language teaching, enabling me to read ancient texts in their original form.  

My teachers have consistently ensured engaging content in our lectures and a comfortable environment in seminars.  

Studying Classics at Manchester has massively developed my skill set.

Zoe Clark, Classics BA

Facilities

The John Rylands Library

At The John Rylands Library , you'll have exclusive access to our internationally significant collections, including papyri, medieval manuscripts and early printed books such as very early copies of the Homeric poems.

Manchester Museum

The UK's leading university museum has more than four million objects spanning millennia, including one of the largest collections of ancient Egyptian artefacts in the UK. Go behind-the-scenes to handle, analyse and interpret rare artefacts, including exclusive material specific to ancient history.

Visit our facilities page to find out more.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk