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GREEK 253: New Testament Greek

The New Testament is the most famous and most widely translated Greek text from antiquity. Students have the opportunity to read one or more of the Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, or selected Pauline letters in the original language. Questions about the transmission of the text and about its theological implications provoke lively discussions. Offered annually in the spring semester. Counts toward ancient studies major. Counts toward linguistic studies concentration.
Prerequisite: GREEK 231 or equivalent.


Long ago the Greeks and Romans conceived the idea of the liberal arts and made them the basis of higher education. Today the Department of Classics keeps that classical tradition alive at St. Olaf by offering courses in the languages, literature, and culture of Greece and Rome. The study of Graeco-Roman civilization in its ancient Mediterranean context gives students perspective on their own place in history while increasing their understanding of the world into which Christianity was born. Many students satisfy the foreign language requirement with three semesters of ancient Greek or Latin.  (Modern Greek is not offered at St. Olaf.)  Greek is especially helpful for pre-seminary and pre-medicine students, Latin for pre-law students,   Either language makes a good match with the Great Conversation program. In addition to Greek and Latin courses, the department offers a variety of Level I and Level II classics courses that require no knowledge of Greek or Latin and fulfill general education requirements.   Students often combine a major in Greek, Latin, or classics with another major in the humanities, natural sciences, or fine arts.  A classical background enriches one’s experiences in college and in later life, while the verbal and analytical skills acquired by learning classical languages are of lasting benefit in whatever career one chooses.

Ancient Studies

Founded by the Department of Classics in 1971, ancient studies is one of St. Olaf’s oldest interdisciplinary programs. In scope it spans the more than two millennia between Greece’s Bronze Age and the fall of the Roman Empire. Combining art, history, language, literature, philosophy, religion, and theater, it encourages students to take a broad look at ancient Western culture, examining it from multiple perspectives. The ancient studies program has no courses of its own; instead it relies on courses offered by individual departments. Students who major in ancient studies choose electives from the various departmental courses that deal primarily or entirely with the world of ancient Greece and Rome. Many of these courses also satisfy general education requirements. The required courses in Greek or Latin can simultaneously fulfill the college’s foreign language requirement. It is common for St. Olaf students to combine an ancient studies major with a B.A. major like art history, English, history, philosophy, political science, or religion. Even mathematics or natural science majors often complete a second major in ancient studies. The major provides a useful background in the humanities for students interested in virtually any career.

Linguistic Studies

...Science?) GREEK 231 Intermediate Greek GREEK 253 New Testament Greek GREEK 375 Homer and Greek...