Ancient History Reading List

The following is a representative sampling of different approaches to the field of ancient history. The selection is not meant to form a definitive checklist for preparedness for the qualifying exam, but intends to supplement the methodologies and materials, which students will cover through participation in regular research seminars, the methods course, and the ancient history proseminar.

Reading List

General Historical Method

  • N. Morley, Writing Ancient History (Cornell, 1999).

Fields of Ancient History

  • Archaeology: S. Alcock and R. Osborne, Classical Archaeology (2nd ed. 2007), Introduction, Chs. 1
  • Papyrology: R.S. Bagnall, Reading Papyri, Writing Ancient History (1995).
  • Greek epigraphy: L. Robert in D. Rousset (ed.) Choix d’écrits (2007): Ch. 1, “L’oeuvre d’Ad. Wilhelm. L’épigraphie et ses methods. Communication inaugurale au IIe congres international d’épigraphie grecque et latine Paris 1952,” [=Actes IIe Congrès Intern. Épigraphie Paris 1952 (1953): 1-20] 73-86; Ch. 2, “Les épigraphies et l’épigraphie grecque et romaine,” [=L’histoire et ses méthodes (1961) 453-497]: 87-114.
  • Roman epigraphy: C. Bruun & J. Edmondson (eds), The Oxford Handbook of Roman Epigraphy (2015), Ch. 1 (C. Bruun and J. Edmondson, “The Epigrapher at Work”); Ch. 5 (C. Bruun, “Major Corpora and Epigraphic Publications”); Ch. 6 (T. Elliott, “Epigraphy and Digital Resources”).
  • Historiography: T.P. Wiseman, Clio’s Cosmetics. Three Studies in Greco-Roman Literature (1979) Part II: “The Legends of the Patrician Claudii.”
  • Numismatics: M.H. Crawford, “Numismatics” in M.H. Crawford (ed.) The Sources for Ancient History (Cambridge, 1983): 185-234.
  • Prosopography: L. Robert, from D. Rousset (ed.), Choix d’ecrits (2007): Ch. 5, “L’onomastique grecque. Discours d’ouverture au VIIe congrès international d’épigraphie grecque et latine Constantza 1977 [Actes du VIIe Congrès intern. d’épigr. gr. et lat. Constantza 1977 (1979) 31-42]: 145-156.

Economic, Long Duree, and Environmental History

  • P. Horden and N. Purcell, The Corrupting Sea (Blackwell, 2000), Parts I-II.
  • P. Halstead, “Traditional and Ancient Rural Economy in Mediterranean Europe: plus ça change?” JHS 107 (1987): 77-87 [reprinted in W. Scheidel and S. von Reden, eds. The Ancient Economy (2002): 53-70].
  • W. Scheidel, I. Morris and R. Saller (eds.) The Cambridge Economic History of the Greco-Roman World (Cambridge 2007): Chs. 1, 2, 5.
  • A. Bresson, La cité marchande (2000), ch. VI, “Aristote et le commerce extérieur” [=REA 89 (1987) 217-238].
  • K. Hopkins, “Rome, Taxes, Rents and Trade,” repr. in W. Scheidel and S. von Reden (eds.) The Ancient Economy (2002): 190-230.
  • M. McCormick et al., “Climate Change During and After the Roman Empire: Reconstructing the Past from Scientific and Historical Evidence,” JIH 43.2 (2012): 169-220.

Greek History

  • P. Briant (2001), “Polybe X.28 et les qanāts. Le témoigne et ses limites,” in idem (ed.), Irrigation et drainage dans l’antiquité. Qanats et canalisation souterraines en Iran, en Égypte et en Grèce, Paris, 15-40.
  • P. Cartledge (1985), “Rebels and sambos in classical Greece: a comparative view,” in P. Cartledge  and F. Harvey (eds.) Crux: Essays Presented to G.E.M. de St. Croix, pp. 16-46 (reprinted in Spartan Reflections (2001): 127-52)
  • S. Hodkinson (1997), “The Development of Spartan Society and Institutions in the Archaic Period,” in L.G. Mitchell (ed.) The Development of the polis in Archaic Greece, (London): 44-54.
  • H. Kim (2001), “Archaic coinage as evidence for the use of money,” in: A. Meadows & K. Shipton (eds), Money and its Uses in the Ancient Greek World (Oxford): 7-21.
  • P. Krentz, (2013), “Hoplite hell,” in D. Kagan and G. Viggiano (eds), Men of Bronze (Princeton):134-156.
  • F.G.B. Millar (1983), “Epigraphy,” in M.H. Crawford (ed), Sources for Ancient History (Cambridge): 80-136
  • I. Morris, (1999) “Foreword,” in: M.Finley, The Ancient Economy (updated 3rd edition). (Berkeley): ix-xxxvi.
  • J. Ober, (1989), “The Athenians and their democracy,” review article, CP 84, 322-334.
  • R. Osborne (1998), “Early Greek colonisation? The nature of Greek settlement in the West,” in N. Fisher and H. van Wees (eds.), Archaic Greece: New approaches and New Evidence (London) 251–70
  • J. Ma (2000), “Seleukids and Speech-Act Theory: Performative Utterances, Legitimacy and Negotiations in the World of the Maccabees,” Scripta Classica Israelica 19, 71-112
  • N. Papazarkadas (2009), “Epigraphy and the Athenian Empire: Re-shuffling the Chronological Cards,” in idem, J. Ma, and R. Parker (eds.), Interpreting the Athenian Empire, London, 67-88.
  • S. Price, Religions of the Ancient Greeks (1999). [DN] (217)
  • L. Robert 1968. “De Delphes à l’Oxus: inscriptions grecques nouvelles de la Bactriane,” CRAI 112 (3), 416-57 [=Choix d’escrits (2007), Ch. 19, 533-566].
  • Sherwin-White, Susan, and Amélie Kuhrt. (1991), “Aspects of Seleucid Royal Ideology: The Cylinder of Antiochus I from Borsippa.” The Journal of Hellenic Studies 111, 71-86.
  • R.R.R. Smith (2004), “The Use of Images: Visual History and Ancient History”, in T.P. Wiseman (ed.) Classics in Progress: Essays on Ancient Greece and Rome, Oxford, 59-102.
  • Stevens, K. 2014. “The Antiochos Cylinder, Babylonian Scholarship and Seleukid Imperial Ideology,” JHS 66-88.
  • P. Vidal-Naquet (1986), “The Black Hunter and the Origin of the Athenian Ephebia,” in idem, The black hunter: forms of thought and forms of society in the Greek world (Baltimore), 106-128.
  • P. J. Thonemann (2006), “Neilomandros. A Contribution to the History of Greek Personal Names,” Chiron 36: 11-43.

Roman History

  • T.J. Cornell, The Beginnings of Rome (Routledge, 1995), Ch. 3.
  • T.P. Wiseman, “Roman Republic, Year One” G&R (1998): 19-26.
  • W. Scheidel, “Roman population size: The Logic of the Debate,” in L. de Ligt and S. Northwood, People, Land, and Politics: Demographic Developments and the Transformation of Roman Italy, 300 BC – AD 14 (Brill, 2008): 17-70.
  • K.J. Hölkeskamp, “Pomp und Prozessionen. Rituale und Zeremonien in der politischen Kultur der römischen Republik” Jahrbuch des Historischen Kollegs 2006: 35-72.
  • P.A . Brunt, “The Fall of the Roman Republic,” in id. The Fall of the Roman Republic and Related Essays (Oxford, 1988).
  • R.P. Saller, Patriarchy, Property, and Death in the Roman Family (Cambridge, 1994) Part III.
  • A. Wallace-Hadrill, House and Society in Pompeii and Herculaneum (Princeton, 1994), Part I.
  • P. Leveau, “Le Rhone et les Romaines, ‘terrassiers infatigables, hydrauliciens habiles’ La geoarcheologie et le neouvellement d’un paradigm,” in J. Burnouf and P. Leveau (eds.) Fleuves et Marais (2009): 85-92.
  • M. Beard, J. North, S. Price, Religions of Rome (Oxford, 1998), Vol. I, Ch. 4.
  • C. Ando, “Evidence and Orthopraxy,” JRS (2009): 171-81.
  • W. Eck, “Ehrungen für Personen hohen soziopolitischen Ranges im öffentlichen und privaten Bereich” in W. Eck, Monument und Inschrift (Berlin, 2010).
  • F. Millar, “The Emperor in the Roman World” (2nd ed., 1992), Chs. 3 and 5.
  • K. Hopkins, “Rules of Evidence,” JRS (1978): 178-86.
  • P. Brown, “Through the Eye of a Needle: Wealth, the Fall of Rome, and the Making of Christianity in the West, 350-550 AD” (Princeton, 2012), pp. 3-90.
  • B. D. Shaw, “Sacred Violence: African Christians and Sectarian Hatred in the Age of Augustine” (Cambridge, 2011), pp. 630-674.
  • C. Wickham, “Framing the Early Middle Ages: Europe and the Mediterranean, 400-800” (Oxford, 2005), pp. 1-14 and 519-588.