Top Ten Tuesday: Literature You Should Read If You Love Ancient Greece & Rome


Image via The Broke and the Bookish

I know it’s Wednesday, but I couldn’t resist participating in this week’s Top Ten Tuesday, even if it is belatedly! This meme, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is about literature every [blank] should read, inserting the blank for whatever our hearts desire. I was originally going to title this post, “Literature Every Classics Major Should Read,” but let’s face it, we already have!

As many of you might know, I majored in Pre- and Early-Modern Literature at University of California, Santa Cruz, and minored in Classical History. I am absolutely obsessed with ancient Greek and Roman texts and have read these epics, plays, and essays multiple times. But even if you never studied these in college, you can consider them the best starter course into this fascinating period of history.

This blog post is also perfect timing, considering that I only have one month left (!) before I’m traveling to Greece and Italy to walk the lands where these amazing philosophers, dramatists, and oral historians once lived! To say I’m excited is a huge understatement!

Classics Collage

  1. Iliad by Homer
  2. Odyssey by Homer
  3. Aeneid by Virgil
  4. Art of Love by Ovid
  5. Symposium by Plato (Be sure to watch “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” a theater production/film that has a song about this story!)
  6. Medea by Euripides
  7. Bacchae by Euripides
  8. Oresteia (Agamemnon, Libation Bearers, and Eumenides) by Aeschylus
  9. Three Theban Plays (Oedipus the King, Oedipus at Colonus, and Antigone) by Sophocles
  10. Lysistrata by Aristophanes

(Side note: As a former scholar, I’m not a fan of using articles in these titles. If you want to sound sophisticated, refer to Homer’s Iliad rather than The Iliad by Homer. After all, it’s an epic that’s part of an oral tradition, not a novel!)

So are you interested in the tales of ancient Greece and Rome? Which of these have you read, and what did you think? Let me know in the comments!

So I went on a book bender this week…

Not pictured: Madame Bovary. I'm reading it, duh!

Hello, my name is Book Club Babe, and I’m a book addict. In a last ditch attempt to covet as many books as possible, I bought ten books this week–a personal record, I think. But I always fall back on the same justifications: There was an insane sale, and I need them!

So here’s the breakdown: (TOTAL = $31.35):

  1. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
  2. Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  3. Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
  4. 1984 by George Orwell
Borders (TOTAL = $15.07):
  1. The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton
  2. Selected Tales by Edgar Allan Poe
  3. A Desirable Residence by Madeleine Wickham
Fresno Country Library Book Sale (TOTAL = $1!!!):
  1. The Awakening and Selected Short Fiction by Kate Chopin
  2. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
  3. Art of Love by Ovid (with original Latin!)
GRAND TOTAL: 10 books for $47.42!!!
          I’m currently reading Madame Bovary, but I’ve already read the books I got at the library book sale–they’re just for my personal collection. I’d also like to note that all but one are literary classics, so it’s, you know, intellectual splurging. I know it will probably take me all year and then some to finish my new books, but what can I say? There was an insane sale, and I need them!
          PS: Happy 13th Birthday to my black Labrador Bubba! I love you more than books!!!