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Department of Greek and Latin Philology


The Department pursues a broad range of research areas. Young researchers are accordingly encouraged to single out their research topics according to their individual interests. This is reflected in the large thematic and methodological variety of the qualifying papers that are submitted. Furthermore, the teaching staff deliberately avoid compartmentalization between Greek, Classical Latin, Medieval and Neo-Latin, in order to foster constructive dialogue among neighboring disciplines. 

Study of Religions remains one of the key areas of research within Classical Philology at the University of Zurich, with the late Professor of Greek Walter Burkert as its founding father and figurehead until his death on 11 March 2015, and his pupils Prof. Riedweg and Prof. Gemelli partly following suit.

Prof. Christoph Riedweg's research interests include early Greek literature and philosophy (e.g. Orpheus/Orphism, Pythagoras/Pythagorism), classical tragedy and comedy, rhetoric, philosophy of the 4th century BC as well as of the imperial period and late antiquity (specifically Platonism), as well as Judeo-hellenistic and Early Christian literature. Currently he is about to complete a work published in conjunction with Christoph Horn and Dietmar Wyrwa: the 2,500-page Philosophie der Kaiserzeit und der Spätantike (Philosophy of the Imperial Period and Late Antiquity), which constitutes Volume 5 of the Philosophie der Antike series of the new Grundriss der Geschichte der Philosophie, with over 50 contributors world-wide.

Prof. Ulrich Eigler works on the literature of the Roman Republic, and the Augustean and early imperial period as well. A particular field of his interest is the literature and culture of late antiquity. He is doing research on the reception of antiquity in modern literature and film, and on the textual tradition of classical literature taking a keen interest in the material conditions of how ancient literary tradition has been handed down. He is currently working in particular on a cultural history of the study-room as a place of work, as well as together with Raphael Schwitter on a text book on Latin paleography. As a member of a workgroup which covered most areas of research on antiquity he has after several years of research recently published  the three-volumes-Handwörterbuch der antiken Sklaverei (Concise Dictionary of Ancient Slavery).

The research of Prof. Carmen Cardelle de Hartmann focuses on textual criticism and editorial work, the pragmatics of Latin in the Middle Ages, and poetological questions concerning the Latin literature of the same period. She is particularly interested in linking theoretical questions with the analysis of the textual witnesses. She is currently completing the critical edition of Petrus Alphonsi's Dialogus, and also recently began two new projects, about ideas on language in the early Middle Ages, and about the library of the Basle Charterhouse.

Appointed SNSF Assistant Professor in our Department in September 2015, Prof. Gunther Martin primarily works on the project entitled Pragmatik des Dialogs in der antiken Tragödie (The Pragmatics of Dialogue in Ancient Tragedy), within which framework he also employs two doctoral candidates. Besides, his research focuses in particular on ancient rhetoric and the historiography of the imperial period. He is also currently contributing to the decipherment and publication of the historical fragments of palimpsest in the codex Vindob. hist. gr. 73 (thought to be Dexippus of Athens).

Further information, including more detailed descriptions of current and completed research projects, as well as lists of the current PhD and Habilitation projects within our Department, can be found on the German-language page.