LATIN 409 - Augustan Poetry
Fall 2021, Section 001 - Horace's Odes
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: Latin (LATIN)
Department: LSA Classical Studies
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Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
LATIN 301 or 302 or permission of instructor.
May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credit(s).
Primary Instructor:


Horace’s Odes encompass a wide range of attitudes toward the human experience from the embrace of living in the present (carpe diem, 1.11) to sober reflection on death (puluis et umbra sumus, 4.7). At the same time, they are more narrowly concerned with the values and concerns of the culturally elite at Rome in the Age of Augustus. In this course, we will read the Odes for their breadth and specificity of reference, considering as we go the intersections of life and literature, rustic simplicity and urbane sophistication, and private concerns and public duty. Class meetings will focus on close reading of the Latin and analysis of the Odes’ poetic qualities, including meter (especially Sapphic and Alcaic strophes), with due consideration of the context in which the poems were written, both socio-historical (the rise of the principate and imperial ideology) and literary (especially the tradition of Greek lyric). At the end of the course, we will read Horace’s Carmen Saeculare, which was composed for the Ludi Saeculares of 17 BC, one of several archaic rituals that Augustus restored in order to legitimize his position as princeps. Performed as a public spectacle in a religious context, this poem offers an interesting point of comparison with the Odes, which were composed for the reading pleasure of private citizens.

Course Requirements:

Reading in Latin for each class meeting, occasional secondary reading, two exams, and a poetry project that includes translation, a comparative analysis, and an interpretive essay.

Intended Audience:

Students who have completed Latin 301 or whose proficiency level is equivalent to that of 5 semesters of college Latin.

Class Format:

Two meetings per week for reading and discussion.


LATIN 409 - Augustan Poetry
Schedule Listing
001 (REC)
 In Person
TuTh 1:00PM - 2:30PM

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