Ancient and Classical Worlds Summer Programme

2016 Ancient 200x155 72dpi

3 – 16 July 2016
Programme Director: Dr Jan Parker

This programme offers a rich selection of courses on a range of past cultures and civilisations taught by leading experts. Whether you are drawn by history or architecture, archaeology or literature, warfare or medicine, the programme will allow you an unrivalled chance to immerse yourself in the latest thinking on antiquity.

Bookings for 2016 open in early December.

Academic programme

  • Four special subject courses
    (two per week)
  • Plenary course AE0:
    Discovery and Exploration
  • Evening talks

Special subject courses

You choose two courses per week, each has five sessions. Courses are led by recognised experts from the University and other British universities.

Week 1:

11.15am – 12.45pm

Aa1 - Athens and Sparta: rivals for Greek domination
Aa2 - The ancient and enduring Maya
Aa3 - The Ancient Egyptian Empire: treasures, treaties and conquests
Aa4 - Love and death: Greek and Roman poetry

2.00pm – 3.30pm

Ea1 - Writing history: masters and commanders
Ea2 - An introduction to Ancient Greek philosophy
Ea3 - "Ra has placed the king on his throne forever": Ancient Egyptian religion
Ea4 - From shards to scrolls: how the Old Testament came to be written

Week 2:

11.15am – 12.45pm

Ab1 - City of Athens
Ab2 - The Roman Empire
Ab3 - In the land of the Minotaur: exploring the Minoan civilisation
Ab4 - Greek drama in performance

2.00pm – 3.30pm

Eb1 - Culture and religion in Etruria and Rome
Eb2 - An age of heroes? The archaeology of the Homeric Epics
Eb3 - Exploring Ancient and Classical worlds - Cambridge Collections
Eb4 - The wonders of Ancient Greek technology

Plenary lectures

You attend the series of daily plenary lectures. Course Directors and leading specialists associated with the University give lectures on subjects from Mesopotamia to Maya, Egypt to Troy, Etruria to Rome, and beyond, exploring the same 'wonders' of art, ideas, culture and conquest that inspired Herodotus.

Evening talks

Invited speakers and members of the University will give a varied programme, covering a wide range of subjects.

A typical day

On each weekday morning you attend a plenary lecture, followed by a class from your Aa or Ab special subject course. In the afternoons you attend a class from your Ea or Eb special subject course. Subject specific and joint evening lectures are offered in the evenings.

College accommodation

Accommodation is available for participants who want to stay in a Cambridge College. Please see the accommodation options available for this programme.

Non-residential attendance is also available if participants prefer to find their own lodgings.

Information for applicants

Programme calendar (available in December)
Who can apply
How to apply
What happens next?
Programme options and fees (available in December)
Language requirements
Booking terms and conditions


The quickest way to apply is by using our secure online booking system. You can also apply by downloading an application form (pdf) and sending it by post or fax.