From its earliest days, Bryn Mawr has had an international reputation in classical languages. It was among the first institutions to offer doctorates in classical philology to women in the United States. Today, the College is home to a lively community of graduate students, both women and men, who are interested in various aspects of the civilizations of ancient Greece and Rome; and its name is known to classicists worldwide through the Bryn Mawr Classical Review, the second-oldest electronic book-review journal, which is received by over 10,000 subscribers around the globe.
Study at Bryn Mawr
Classes are small, affording close contact with faculty. The weekly Classics Colloquium provides an opportunity to mingle informally with faculty and hear talks by prominent scholars from all over the world. Classics graduate students, like all students in the Graduate Group, have fully-wired carrels in the beautiful Rhys Carpenter library affording further opportunities for informal contact across the disciplines.
As for courses: in addition to seminars at Bryn Mawr, students may take classes at the nearby University of Pennsylvania through a reciprocal agreement, and, by special arrangement, at Princeton University and other institutions in the area. The department also regularly brings in associated faculty from neighboring institutions to offer seminars in important areas of scholarly specialization outside those of the Bryn Mawr faculty.
Furthermore, the Classics graduate students annually organize the Agnes Michels Lecture, selecting a speaker to give a public lecture and hold a seminar for the students.
In support of its commitment to studying literary and historical texts in their cultural as well as literary contexts, the Department offers two fellowships each year toward summer study in Italy or Greece, preferably at the American Academy in Rome or the American School of Classical Studies in Athens. These fellowships were established in honor of Professor Emerita Mabel Lang, whose own work forms a palmary example of this approach. The fellowships are normally reserved for students who will complete the M.A. degree in the academic year preceding the summer in which they plan to go abroad.
The department also offers the Berthe M. Marti Fellowship in affiliation with the American Academy in Rome to enable advanced graduate students to study and carry out research in Rome in the fields of early, classical, and medieval Latin, Latin paleography, Latin textual criticism, or some combination thereof. The Fellowship alternates between Bryn Mawr College and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Bryn Mawr's Classics collection, housed in the award-winning Rhys Carpenter library, is one of the best in the country and also offers access to a wide range of electronic resources such as
- L’Année Philologique
- Brill's New Pauly and Supplements
- Loeb Classical Library
- Thesaurus Linguae Latinae Online
- Thesaurus Linguae Graecae Online
Further resources are available in the Mariam Coffin Canaday Library, notably an exceptional collection of over 1,200 incunables (printed books published before 1500), which are readily available to interested students.
As part of the Tri-College community, everyone has easy access to the collections of Haverford and Swarthmore Colleges: there is a combined electronic catalog, Tripod, and books ordered from the other collections arrive on the Bryn Mawr campus within hours.
Fellowships and Scholarships
Fellowships are generally offered for up to six years, contingent upon satisfactory progress. Advanced students are also eligible for Travel Fellowships, Teaching Assistantships, and other support for completion of the dissertation. Senior graduate students of exceptional promise are sometimes given the opportunity to design and teach a course as part of a funding package.
Visit the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences admissions page to find out more information about how to apply, including important deadlines for those who wish to be considered for financial aid.
Students who have not yet reached the required level of linguistic proficiency may enroll in the Continuing Education Program, which allows them to take intermediate and advanced undergraduate language courses at half the regular cost. Those who make satisfactory progress in the languages during their first semester are encouraged to apply for admission and for financial aid in either the second or third semester.