Department of ClassicsUniversity of Cincinnati
Department of Classics


This August Jack Davis, Carl W. Blegen Professor of Greek Archaeology, and Shari Stocker, his wife and also a member of the Department of Classics, travelled to the Antipodes as guests of the Australian Archaeological Institute in Athens, Greece, and at the invitation of its director, Professor Alexander Cambitoglou, director of the AAIA. Professor Sir John Boardman of Oxford University was first to travel to Australia at the invitation of the AAIA, now 21 years ago.


with Professor Alexander Cambitoglou, Director of the AAIA

Davis reports: "We saw graduates of the Department of Classics at UC 'Down Under.' Professor Ian McPhee, Ph.D. 1976, and his wife, Professor Betsy Pemberton, showed us the wonderful Trendall Centre for the study of ancient Greek vase-painting at LaTrobe University in Melbourne, which Ian continues to direct after his retirement last year. Professor Blanche Menadier, Ph.D. 1994, welcomed us to Macquarie University in Sydney, where she teaches and serves as an administrator. Her husband Professor Ken Sheedy teaches there too and is curator of the University's particularly fine collection of ancient Greek and Roman coins.

with Betsy Pemberton and Ian McPhee
with Ken Sheedy and Blanche Menadier

Jack and Shari were also entertained by alumni of the department's highly successful Tytus Fellowship Program: Professor Graeme Clarke in Canberra and Professor John Melville Jones in Perth.

Jack delivered thirty lectures in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Newcastle, Armidale, Hobart, Adelaide, and Perth. For the most part, these concerned archaeological research sponsored by the Department of Classics in Greece at the Bronze Age Palace of Nestor in Pylos and in Albania at the ancient Greek colony of Apollonia.

In Canberra, Ambassador Alexis and Mrs. Tenia Christopoulos of Greece invited us to their residence. In Hobart the Greek honorary consul, Alexis Pittas, treated us to lunch at the Tasmanian Parliament.

Shari and I are extremely grateful to all who were involved in organizing our trip. Our visit to Oz was an excellent opportunity for us to strengthen UC's relations with a broader international academic community. We only hope that our new friends in Australia enjoyed our visit half as much as we did.

Hear a radio interview with Jack on the Australian Broadcasting Company.


Last year the Department of Classics awarded five Ph.D. and six M.A. degrees.

The freshly hooded doctors (and their dissertation titles) are:

  • Anne Feltovich "Women's Social Bonds in Greek and Roman Comedy"
  • Sean O'neill "The Emperor as Pharaoh:  Provincial Dynamics & Visual Representations of Imperial Authority in Roman Egypt, 30 B.C. - A.D. 69"
  • Dan Osland "Urban Change in Late Antique Hispania: The Case of Augusta Emerita"
  • Sean Lockwood "Aytaş Mevkii/Islamlar in the Elmah Basin, Turkey: A Multi-Period Sepulchral Site in Northern Lycia"
  • Shannon LaFayette "The Destruction and Afterlife of the Palace of Nestor at Pylos: The Making of a Forgotten Landmark"

M.A.s were awarded to:

  • Allison Fields
  • Patricia Mason
  • Stephen Self
  • Andrew Connor
  • Margaret Sneeringer

We expect another equally productive year this year.

The Department of Classics at the University of Cincinnati invites applications for a tenure-track position at the level of Assistant Professor of Classics and Ancient History, to begin August 1, 2012. Candidates are expected to teach ancient history at all levels as well as ancient Greek and Latin and classical civilization; they should provide evidence, through their dissertation or publications, for high-quality scholarly potential in Greek or Roman history. A Ph.D. in Classics, History, or a related field is required for appointment. Diverse teaching experience and publications are highly desirable.

The department offers B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees in Classics and has recently expanded to 14 full-time faculty lines, including ancient historians, archaeologists, and philologists. The graduate program is one of the largest in the country, with 35-40 students in residence. The Department is housed as a single unit with offices, classrooms, lecture halls, and library occupying adjoining floors. The John M. Burnam Classical Library contains the largest Classics, Byzantine, and Modern Greek collection in the world. Full information about the department is available at

Faculty are expected to make significant contributions to knowledge through research and publication, to teach undergraduate and graduate courses with excellence, and to fulfill reasonable service obligations to the scholarly and local communities.

Candidates should register for the position (211UC1748) online at and attach a letter of application, a curriculum vitae, and a writing sample. Preliminary inquiries can be addressed to the Chair of the Search Committee, Professor Peter van Minnen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Candidates should also have three letters of recommendation sent to Professor van Minnen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or to the Ancient History Search Committee, c/o Professor Peter van Minnen, Department of Classics, University of Cincinnati, 410 Blegen Library, Cincinnati, Ohio 45221-0226. The committee will start reviewing applications on November 15, 2011. Where possible, we will conduct preliminary interviews at the APA/AIA annual meeting in Philadelphia, PA, January 5-8, 2012. The position will remain open until filled. The University of Cincinnati is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Women, people of color, people with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply.


Archie Joseph Christopherson (1931-2011)

Archie Christopherson, Associate Professor of Classics and History emeritus, died Tuesday Sept. 20, just three days after his 80th birthday. He leaves behind his wife of 27 years, Sharon, children, grandchildren, and friends.

Archie was born in Minnesota, where he received his A.B. in Philosophy from St. Paul Seminary in 1952. His graduate work, first at the University of Minnesota, later at the University of Maryland, was interrupted by his military service. He received an M.A. in History from the University of Maryland in 1961 and then taught as an instructor at Northwestern University and the University of Missouri. He received a Ph.D. in History from the University of Maryland in 1965 with a dissertation on "The Establishment of Roman Government in the Three Gauls" directed by Wilhelmina Jashemski. Archie joined the Department of Classics in 1965 as assistant professor and was tenured in 1968. He was acting head of department in 1973-74. Over the years he directed many M.A. theses and Ph.D. dissertations and was a teacher's teacher in a variety of classes, both in Roman history and Latin literature. He was much involved with high schools in the Cincinnati area and in more recent years the Clifton community, where he lived. He will be sorely missed.



The Department of Classics at UC is co-sponsoring a two day conference on Mycenaean wall paintings to be held at the National Research Foundation in Athens.

This conference is organized by our own Shari Stocker and Jack Davis as well as Hariclia Brecoulaki of the Institute of Greek and Roman Antiquity. One of our graduate students, Emily Egan, will also be participating.

The organizers of the conference have described it as follows:

Despite the obvious fragmentation and scarcity of Mycenaean wall-paintings, newly excavated finds and new restorations of old fragments are gradually changing the landscape of Mycenaean iconography by expanding the range of known subject matters.

The aim of the present workshop is to bring together scholars who are actively engaged in the study of Mycenaean murals, both those excavated long ago and those only recently discovered, at the major Greek mainland sites of Thebes, Orchomenos, Gla, Mycenae, Tiryns, Argos, Sparta, and Pylos.

Their research presents an unparalleled opportunity for us to explore more systematically relationships between the pictorial themes of particular paintings and the specific contexts in which they have been found.

The conference runs the weekend of February 11, 2011.

The full program is also available.

Natalie Abell won the graduate student paper award in a unanimous vote at this year's Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) meetings. 

Natalie won the Pomerance Fellowship from last year's AIA.

This is the second time in three years that the graduate student paper award went to a UC Classics student. Marcie Handler won the same award in 2009.

Each year the University Research Council (URC) awards grants to faculty for research projects. This year three Classics faculty received grants:

  • Peter van Minnen for the publication of the Keos series of excavation monographs
  • Susan Prince for a new history of ancient cynicism
  • Kathleen Lynch for her research at the archaeological site of Gordion

Two of our faculty members are featured in the Arts & Sciences McMicken Monthly web magazine for their work that will be presented at the 2011 annual AIA/APA meetings this month.

gutzwillermenanderKathryn Gutzwiller is an invited speaker at the APA (American Philological Association) Presidential panel where she will present her research on newly discovered mosaics in Antioch which display portions of lost works of the playwright Menander.


Kathleen Lynch will be presenting at the Gold Medal Session of the AIA (Archaeological Institute of America). There she will outline how the changes in the design of drinking vessels in ancient Greece are an indicator of changing political, social, and economic shifts.