Unique among colleges and universities in the United States, our tradition of the Greek Play goes back to 1909. Every other year, students perform an authentic Greek drama. The production adheres to the original conventions that governed theatre in the time of the great tragedians, believing that the best plays will emerge from the conditions for which they were written.
The College boasts the Mabel K. Whiteside Greek Theatre, a classic outdoor Greek theatre also affectionately known by students as The Dell. This unique facility allows the plays to be performed in daylight for an audience seated in a semi-circle around the performers.
The event is one of the most anticipated in the area and in recent years has been accompanied by a Greek festival with students from neighboring schools.
The fall 2014 production of the Randolph College Greek Play will present Oedipus the King.
We help our students to gain firsthand experience of the ancient and modern Mediterranean by studying for a semester in Greece and/or Italy. Our affiliated programs are the College Year in Athens, an academically rigorous program of study combined with the vibrant experience of day-to-day contact with the people, monuments, and landscape of Greece and the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome, where our students meet other future classicists while absorbing the history of the City, studying the classical languages and Italian, and making extended trips to Magna Graecia (Campania and Sicily). Advanced students may also study under the auspices of the American School of Classical Studies in Athens.
We also encourage summer study sponsored by the College and other institutions, especially Randolph’s semester or year-long World in Britain program at the University of Reading, England.
We’ve had interns at:
Since 1965 the department has been home to the Delta Alpha chapter of Eta Sigma Phi, a nationwide honors society for superior students of Greek and Latin. Our chapter participates in nationwide translation contests and has sent members to participate in the national convention. The annual initiation ceremony is a great occasion on which to meet faculty and students of neighboring Classics programs in Virginia, including Sweet Briar College and Hampden-Sydney College.
The Classics department is the academic home of the Lynchburg chapter of the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA). The AIA’s national lecture program brings working archaeologists of different interests to our campus to share their research.The David F. Anthony Sr. Memorial Lecture is given every year by a Virginia archaeologist. The membership of the local chapter includes professional archaeologists, faculty, teachers, and students. The lectures are a great opportunity to meet lovers of archaeology in the Lynchburg community.
Every year around Christmas, Latin classes take to the halls of Randolph to sing Christmas carols in Latin and perform at the tree lighting ceremony with carolers in other languages. On the 21st of April we celebrate Parilia with a BIG birthday cake in honor of the City of Rome. Throughout the year the department takes field trips, as part of classes or just for fun to see plays, Museum exhibits and hear lectures. We sponsor occasional competitions, most recently a critical reading of Gladiator and impromptu celebrations like a Roman Banquet and Dancing in the Dell.
Classics students participate in summer research projects such as constructing authentic Greek drama masks and studying Roman tombstones.