Loyola University Chicago

John Felice Rome Center

clst 306 / fnar 336 the art of ancient greece

Summer 2012

Intersession I, 2012                                                                              B.M. Lavelle

Course Syllabus

This course is an introduction to the art and archaeology of the ancient Greeks from the Bronze Age (c. 3000 BCE) to the Hellenistic period (first century BCE). It focuses specifically on major developments in and examples of ancient Greek architecture, sculpture, pottery and painting.  Students will learn what is actually to be seen and understood as the “text” of individual pieces, while maintaining their sense and grasp of overall form and composition, as well as how individual examples figure in trends, evolutions, and otherwise in their contexts.  Students will thus come to understand how the parts and the whole work together to comprise art. 

            We will be fortunate in this class to be able to visit actual works (or copies of works) of Greek art in museums or in situ.

Learning Outcomes:  Knowledge and Skills Areas

     Students will learn to interpret selected examples of ancient Greek art, including painting, sculpture, architecture, and other types from the Bronze Age to the Hellenistic period in light of their aesthetic and cultural values and precedents.  

     They will zero in on the details of examples, that is, what is actually to be seen as the “text” of individual pieces, while maintaining their sense and grasp of overall form and composition, as well as how individual examples figure in their immediate and extended contexts. 

    Students will come to understand that art even in the rather different culture of the Greeks is yet a communication that reflects the desire of artists to portray the truths of the human condition and environment in aesthetic ways. 

     They will also learn that art is inimitably tied to audience, its time and place, and so that it is a representation of social, psychological, political, intellectual, cultural and other topics and concerns.

     Students will develop a better sense of aesthetics and aesthetic appreciation and so understand more about art, ancient and modern.



J. G. Pedley, Greek Art and Archaeology, 5th edition (Prentice-Hall:  2011).

Books are available at the Loyola University Bookstore - Lakeshore Campus or online at www.luc-lsc.bkstr.com.



Short Reports                                      20%                   90-100 A        72-74 C+    

Journal                                               20%                    87-89  A-      68-71 C

Mid-term                                             30%                    83-86   B+    65-67 C-                     

Final                                                    20%                    78-82   B      62-64 D+

Personal summary                              10%                    75-77   B-     58-61 D

                                                                                                                -57 (let’s not go there)


 Scheda (tentative)

June 22:                        Early evening walking tour of Plaka:

                                      Monuments of old Athens

                                      (This is informal and not part of the course.)


June 23                         National Museum (morning):

                                      Minoan wall-paintings (if wing is open) ,Greek pottery and pottery painting:  Geometric to Late Classical Mycenaean art and artifacts; Sculpture:  Archaic to Hellenistic:  kouroi, Artemision Zeus,

                                      Agora and Agora museum (afternoon)

                                      Various pieces

Akropolis and Akropolis Museum (early evening)

                                       Akropolis (site):   Parthenon, Erectheion; Sculptures:  korai; frieze and metopes


June 24                         Mycenae and Mycenae Museum

                                      Mycenae (site):  Lion Gate (and wall), Grave circle, Cult rooms, megaron Museum:  artifacts from the 16th to the 11th centuries B.C.E.


June 25                         Sparta and Sparta Museum (late morning)

                                     Sparta (site):  akropolis, Artemis Orthia Museum:  miscellaneous artifacts, “Leonidas”

June 26                         Olympia and Olympia Museum (afternoon)

                                      Olympia (site): T. Zeus, T. Hera, Stadium; Olympia Museum:  Temple sculptures, Nike, Hermes and Dionysos, Zeus & Ganymede


Mid-term (late afternoon)


June 27                         Delphi and Delphi Museum (afternoon)

                                      Delphi (site):  treasuries, T. Apollo, stadium; Delphi Museum:  treasury sculptures, charioteer,  Kleobis and Biton.


June 28                         Thebes (late morning)

                                      Kerameikos (late afternoon/early evening)

                                       Kerameikos (site):  demosion sema Kerameikos museum: Dipylon amphorai, gravestones.

June 29                         Aegina

                                      T. of Athena Aphaia site (early afternoon)


June 30                         Sounion (late morning)

                                      Akropolis (possible:  late afternoon)


July 1                         Final Exam (early morning).


    Some changes may be made to the scheda.