CLASSICS 175C  The Archaeology of Greek Sanctuaries and Religion


Professor: Kim Shelton                                                           No. 14775

Office: 7207 Dwinelle                                                             Day/Time: MWF 3-4

Office Hours: MWF 2-3 or by appointment                               Place: 219 Dwinelle




Course Description and Goals

This course will examine the sacred spaces of ancient Greece, with particular emphasis on the origins, structure and evolution of cult sites, on the diverse ritual practices and sacred festivals associated with different divinities and geographic regions, on the range and importance of votive dedications as religious offerings as well as works of art, and on the development of monumental architecture to meet the needs of ancient Greek worship. A familiarity will be attained with the material configuration of belief in the context of the major sanctuaries and on a more intimate domestic context. Evidence will be primarily archaeological, together with iconographic, epigraphic and literary sources whenever possible. Both Pan-Hellenic and lesser known regional cults will be studied with the aim of exploring the role of sanctuaries in the religious, social, and artistic culture of ancient Greece.



J. Mikalson, Ancient Greek Religion (2005)

A.W. Lawrence, Greek Architecture, 5th ed. (1996)

Course Reader (available 9/2 at Zee Zee Copy 2431-C Durant Ave.)

Reserve Reading/Sources

Attendance policy

You are responsible for all material discussed, assigned and displayed during class lectures and acquiring this first-hand will lead to a better performance on exams, especially on slide identification. You will not be graded on your attendance, however, during the calculation of final grades, a good attendance record can influence the "rounding-up" of a borderline mark.



Lectures will be heavily illustrated with images of the ancient sanctuaries and the artifacts related to them. Grades will be based on two hour-long tests (consisting of image identification, short answers and essays – 20%), a research project (group oral presentation – 10%, and individual paper – 20%) and a final exam (30%).


(A=100-90, B=89-80, C=79-70, D=69-60, F=59-0) For PASS credit you must achieve a final average of at least 70.