Center for Hellenic Studies

Center for Hellenic Studies Updates from the CHS and items of interest to classicists. Contact us at [email protected] http://chs.harvard.edu http://twitter.com/hellenicstudies http://www.flickr.com/photos/hellenicstudies/
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Harvard University's Center for Hellenic Studies, located in Washington DC, was founded by means of an endowment made "exclusively for the establishment of an educational center in the field of Hellenic Studies designed to rediscover the humanism of the Hellenic Greeks." This humanistic vision remains the driving force of the Center for Hellenic Studies.

Mission: A fitting metaphor for the mission of the Center (and the basis of our logo) is the lighthouse of Alexandria, the Pharos, as envisioned in the dream of Alexander the Great. The story of this vision, as retold in Plutarch's Life of Alexander, was meant to become a permanent "charter myth" that captured the ideal of Alexandria-in-Egypt as the ultimate Greek city and - more basically - the ideal of Hellenic Civilization as a universalized concept of humanism, transcending distinctions between Europe and non-Europe. The Center tries to honor these ideals by bringing together a variety of research and teaching interests centering on Hellenic civilization in the widest sense of the term "Hellenic." This concept encompasses the evolution of the Greek language and its culture as a central point of contact for all the different civilizations of the ancient Mediterranean world. Interaction with foreign cultures, including the diffusion of Roman influence, is an integral part of this concept.

The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours | Gallery: Part 1
05/16/2019
The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours | Gallery: Part 1

The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours | Gallery: Part 1

The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours is based on a course that Professor Gregory Nagy has been teaching at Harvard University since the late 1970s. The book discusses selected readings of texts, all …

Divine Deceiver: Hermes in the Homeric Hymns
05/13/2019
Divine Deceiver: Hermes in the Homeric Hymns

Divine Deceiver: Hermes in the Homeric Hymns

“I will swear a great oath by my father’s head and vow that neither am I guilty [aitios] myself, neither have I seen any other thief [klopos] of your cows —whatever cows may be; for I know th…

"I start somewhere, anywhere, by offering some thoughts inspired by an article published by a young Detienne, back in 19...
05/11/2019
On Herakles as a model for the athlete Milo of Croton

"I start somewhere, anywhere, by offering some thoughts inspired by an article published by a young Detienne, back in 1960, concerning Herakles as a model hero for the followers of Pythagoras. And I will concentrate on the athlete Milo of Croton, who, as Detienne shows, modeled himself on Herakles as a “Pythagorean hero.”"

2019.05.10 | By Gregory Nagy §0. The death of my friend Marcel Detienne on March 21, 2019 has been a very sad loss. Included among the many who mourn this loss are those devoted colleagues of hi...

Baby Plato and Buzzing Bees
05/11/2019
Baby Plato and Buzzing Bees

Baby Plato and Buzzing Bees

Aelian, Varia Historia 10.21 “Know that Perictione used to carry Plato around in her arms. When Ariston, his father, was sacrificing to the Muses or the Nymphs on Hymêttos, the rest of the family w…

Names of ancient Greek ships
05/09/2019
Names of ancient Greek ships

Names of ancient Greek ships

Did the ancient Greeks name their ships? The answer to that is yes. And with rare exception, the ships were given female names.

"A closer look at the theriomorphism or beastly form of the Centaurs, however, reveals that even in pre-classical times ...
05/04/2019
Can we think of Centaurs as a species?

"A closer look at the theriomorphism or beastly form of the Centaurs, however, reveals that even in pre-classical times there existed representations of female monsters who were half-woman and half-horse. My favorite example is a Boeotian incised decoration, dated to the seventh century BCE, picturing Medusa the monstrous Gorgon as half-woman and half-horse. But is this female monster really a Centaur?"

2019.05.03 | By Gregory Nagy §0. Ιn three previous essays posted in Classical Inquiries, 2019.04.26, 2019.04.19 and 2019.03.22, I analyzed myths about Centaurs. Since they were pictured as half-...

Nikos Gatsos: Music for a Better Day
05/03/2019
Nikos Gatsos: Music for a Better Day

Nikos Gatsos: Music for a Better Day

As part of the European Month of Culture, the Center for Hellenic Studies and the Embassy of Greece in Washington, DC invite you to a lecture recital on Nikos Gatsos: Music for a Better Day on Mond…

CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Katerina Ladianou
05/02/2019
CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Katerina Ladianou

CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Katerina Ladianou

CHS 2018-19 Fellow Katerina Ladianou shares a preview of her work and research during her fellowship at the Center for Hellenic Studies in Washington DC.

Some Greek Passages on Work for May 1st
05/01/2019
Some Greek Passages on Work for May 1st

Some Greek Passages on Work for May 1st

Xenophon, Oeconomicus 4.15-16 “Critoboulos, Some say that whenever the great king gives gifts, he calls in first those who proved their excellence at war because there is no advantage to plowing ma…

Book Club | May 2019: Seneca Oedipus
05/01/2019
Book Club | May 2019: Seneca Oedipus

Book Club | May 2019: Seneca Oedipus

The Book Club selection for May is a drama: Seneca the Younger’s Oedipus. The discussion will start and continue in the forum, with a live conversation on Tuesday May 28th at 11 a.m. EDT. Th…

No One Uses Thucydides As A Model
04/30/2019
No One Uses Thucydides As A Model

No One Uses Thucydides As A Model

Cicero, Orat. 9.30-32 “Thucydides, however, tells of history, wars and battles, in a noble and strong way, but nothing he writes can be transferred to forensic or political use. Those well-known sp…

Sharing Blame: Professional Organizations and the ‘Death’ of the Humanities
04/30/2019
Sharing Blame: Professional Organizations and the ‘Death’ of the Humanities

Sharing Blame: Professional Organizations and the ‘Death’ of the Humanities

Homer, Iliad 11.653-654 “Old man, you know well what kind of terrible person That man is: he would even be quick to blame the blameless.” εὖ δὲ σὺ οἶσθα γεραιὲ διοτρεφές, οἷος ἐκεῖνος δεινὸς ἀνήρ· …

" I will argue that Centaurs in myth can in fact be good so long as they are not in a group—so long as they are not me...
04/27/2019
How to be a good Centaur

" I will argue that Centaurs in myth can in fact be good so long as they are not in a group—so long as they are not members of a gang. "

2019.04.26 | By Gregory Nagy §0. In today’s popular thinking, it is all too easy to assume that the Centaurs of Greek mythology are bad, one and all. And such an assumption seems justifiable whe...

Nikos Gatsos: Music for a Better Day
04/23/2019
Nikos Gatsos: Music for a Better Day

Nikos Gatsos: Music for a Better Day

As part of the European Month of Culture, the Center for Hellenic Studies and the Embassy of Greece in Washington, DC invite you to a lecture recital on NIKOS GATSOS: MUSIC FOR A BETTER DAY with Maria Anastasi-Paschalidis, voice and Aphrodite Mitsopoulou, piano in honor of Agathi Dimitrouka Main Bui...

The Divine Doublet: Hermes and Odysseus
04/23/2019
The Divine Doublet: Hermes and Odysseus

The Divine Doublet: Hermes and Odysseus

His story starts in a cave far from the company of the blessed gods in the care of a daughter of the Titan Atlas. His story often ends in a cave too. In between, he slays a giant shepherd with an u…

Euripides, with Notes
04/22/2019
Euripides, with Notes

Euripides, with Notes

Greek tragedy survives today as words on a page, but ancient performances were distinguished as much for music and dance as for speeches and dialogue. Tragic poets were composers as well as playwrights. The aulos, a two-piped, reeded wind instrument, accompanied all choral odes, and its effect—at ...

"And I have a basic question to ask about the picturing of this event: in our own reading, as it were, of the pedimental...
04/20/2019
About a defeat of the Centaurs, and how to imagine such an event in Olympia

"And I have a basic question to ask about the picturing of this event: in our own reading, as it were, of the pedimental sculptures, who exactly were the mythological characters who defeated the Centaurs? In other words, how are we to imagine this primal event?"

2019.04.19 | By Gregory Nagy §0.This posting, written 2019.04.19, picks up from where I left off in Classical Inquiries 2019.03.22, rewritten 2019.04.17. In the last paragraph of that posting, I...

CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Timothy J. Moore
04/18/2019
CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Timothy J. Moore

CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Timothy J. Moore

CHS 2018-19 Fellow Timothy J. Moore shares a preview of his work and research during his fellowship at the Center for Hellenic Studies in Washington DC.

CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Manon Brouillet
04/17/2019
CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Manon Brouillet

CHS Spring 2019 Fellows | Manon Brouillet

CHS 2018-19 Fellow Manon Brouillet shares a preview of her work and research during her fellowship at the Center for Hellenic Studies in Washington DC.

A worldwide reading of Homer’s Iliad
04/17/2019
A worldwide reading of Homer’s Iliad

A worldwide reading of Homer’s Iliad

The Center for Hellenic Studies hosted a reading of the Iliad, Scroll 24, as part of the 2019 Festival Européen Latin Grec.

Roman tragedy to be staged in original Latin | Cornell Chronicle
04/16/2019
Roman tragedy to be staged in original Latin | Cornell Chronicle

Roman tragedy to be staged in original Latin | Cornell Chronicle

On April 21 and 24 Cornell classics students will stage the ancient Seneca play “Troades” in the original Latin, demonstrating the power of Seneca’s language and the vigor of Cornell’s living Latin program.

The Strong and the Weak: Reading Some Thucydides
04/16/2019
The Strong and the Weak: Reading Some Thucydides

The Strong and the Weak: Reading Some Thucydides

“These well-known speeches have so many unclear and odd phrases that they barely make sense….” Ipsae illae contiones ita multas habent obscuras abditasque sententias vix ut intellegantur– Cic…

Fighting for survival
04/14/2019
Fighting for survival

Fighting for survival

2019.04.12 | By Muriel Rouyer I am a professor of Political science (teaching two courses at HKS, on Global Europe and Green politics and Public Policy in a Global World). Within the space of tw...

Divine Doppelgänger: Hermes and Odysseus
04/11/2019
Divine Doppelgänger: Hermes and Odysseus

Divine Doppelgänger: Hermes and Odysseus

“When she [= Kalypsō] had thus spoken she led the way rapidly before him, and Odysseus followed in her steps; so the pair, goddess and man, went on and on till they came to Kalypsō’s cave, wh…

04/10/2019
Greece High Definition

Greece High Definition

Conservation and restoration of the Caryatids, Acropolis Museum

The Classical Is Political
04/10/2019
The Classical Is Political

The Classical Is Political

From philosophical principles to architectural grandeur, reminders are everywhere that the Classical is fundamentally political in the U.S. Yet activism and advocacy are sometimes viewed as distrac…

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3100 Whitehaven St NW
Washington, DC
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General information

The Director of the Center is Gregory Nagy, who is concurrently the Francis Jones Professor of Classical Greek Literature at the Harvard campus in Cambridge. He is resident at the Center in Washington, where Current Fellows, elected annually, pursue research in one of the world's premier research libraries. Conferences and programs are a regular part of the educational mission of the Center. New initiatives, such as the Virtual Center, will expand this mission far beyond the Center's campus in Washington. These initiatives include Web-based publications in conjunction with the Stoa Consortium; various on-line teaching, research, and discussion projects; an interactive multitext of Homer (modeled on the editorial research of the ancient Alexandrian scholars); and full-text online books.

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Tuesday 09:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 09:00 - 17:00
Thursday 09:00 - 17:00
Friday 09:00 - 17:00

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(202) 234-3738

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