Short courses


Homer Summer School

  • 20 hours (plus 5 to 7 hours extra curricular events)
  • 5 days (over 1 week)


This five-day intensive summer school is for anyone wanting to learn Homeric Greek, study Homer from translation, or revive their knowledge of the Homeric world.

You can choose to study:

  • Homer's Odyssey or Iliad in their original language or in translation
  • comparative literature and Homer
  • Homer in ancient philosophy
  • the reception of Homer by the Romans

Each afternoon there will be optional activities including lectures, round-tables or Q&A events.

The Summer School is run by UCL's Department of Greek and Latin. You can attend in London, UK or Chios, Greece.

Who this course is for

The summer school is open to anyone over 15, including GCSE and A level students, university students and mature learners who want to expand their linguistic knowledge.

You don't need any prior knowledge of the languages.

Familiarity with the Homeric epics is desirable but not essential.

Course content

You'll attend one of the following:

  • language classes (beginners, intermediate or advanced Greek (Odyssey) or advanced Greek (Iliad))
  • literature classes (Homer in translation and his reception, ancient philosophy and homer, comparative literature and Homer, Homer and the Romans)

The language classes focus on reading texts and offer a mixture of grammar and translation practice.

The Homer in translation classes focus on enhancing your knowledge of the Homeric world through specific themes and by studying the Homeric epics in English translation.

Course aims

Depending on your level, and your chosen language, the aims of the course are to:

  • introduce you to the vocabulary and grammar of Homeric Greek
  • help you read simple texts and/or original texts
  • help you brush up your language skills
  • advance your knowledge in preparation for undergraduate or postgraduate study (if appropriate)
  • help you acquire an ancient language
  • introduce you to the main themes of the Homeric world and its modern reception

Teaching, structure and certificates

The summer school runs over five days.

Each day will involve:

  • four hours of teaching in your chosen subject (language or literature)
  • optional activities in the afternoons, including lectures, readings and talks

For the classes, you'll be assigned to a teaching group of about 15 to 20 people. As far as possible, groups will be made up of students of roughly the same level of experience.

There's no formal assessment but you'll receive a certificate of attendance on completing the course.

Preparation and recommended reading

Before you start, the team will send you information on a number of online and electronic resources and tools which will help you prepare for the summer school and which you'll use during the week.

For the literature course, the following translations are recommended:

  • The Iliad of Homer, translated by Richmond Lattimore, published by University Of Chicago Press, 1951
  • The Odyssey of Homer, translated by Richmond Lattimore, published by Harper, 1965

The Chicago Homer, which includes English translations, is available for free online.

Learning outcomes

Depending on your chosen language and level, by the end of the course you'll be able to:

  • understand the grammar and syntax of Homeric Greek
  • read texts in the original language (adapted or unadapted)
  • translate Homeric lines and produce a coherent version of the text
  • discuss the main themes of the Homeric epics


The fee for the summer school is £130. This includes all tuition, but not accommodation or travel expenses.

Course team

Dr Antony Makrinos

Dr Antony Makrinos

Antony is a Teaching Fellow in Classics at the Department of Greek and Latin at UCL and Senior Teaching Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. He's been Director of the Summer School in Homer since 2014 and has taught at many institutions including UCL, King's College London and Queen Mary University of London. He's been teaching at UCL since 2005 when he completed his PhD in Homer.

Learner reviews

"A very enjoyable week. The tutor was excellent, knowledgeable and very enthusiastic and encouraging."

"An excellent week! Really rewarding."

"I've had a brilliant time in the Homer Summer School. I hope you run it again next year! A very inspiring teacher who explains things very well."

"I have learned a lot in these few days and it was great fun. There was always time for questions and space to train reading the text aloud. It was a great experience! Thank you!"

"I have enjoyed the Summer School in Homer, this goes for the classes as well as the afternoon lectures and staged readings. As a foreign student I particularly appreciated getting a glimpse of how classics are being taught at UCL."

"Excellent courses, well-paced. The range of courses, lectures and performances was very good."

"A very intensive and satisfying course. We achieved a great deal in a week."

Course information last modified: 30 Nov 2022, 15:59