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Prof. Levaniouk reports on the work of Classics undergraduates for the Homer Multitext Project

Submitted by Alain M Gowing on September 17, 2012 - 10:33am
Devin Gleeson, Edward Nolan, and Molly Ostheller at lunch at the CHS

 (Pictured, from L to R in foreground: Devin Gleeson, Edward Nolan, and Molly Ostheller at lunch at the CHS)

UW Classics students are now contributing to the first-ever electronic multitext edition of Homer.

In June three of our undergraduates—Molly Ostheller, Devin Gleeson, and Edward Nolan (now off to graduate school at Vanderbilt) —took part in an inter-collegiate summer seminar at the Center for Hellenic Studies in Washington, DC. The two-week seminar was devoted to the Homer Multitext project housed at the Center: the students learned the fundamental facts about oral and textual transmission of Homer, discovered why we need a new web-based way to present the Homeric textual transmission, and acquired basic training in editing texts using open source technology. Most of the seminar was practical: the students actually edited a Homeric text. They worked on a digital diplomatic edition of Venetus A, the main manuscript of the Iliad.  At the Center for Hellenic Studies, our students together with students from Trinity University, Furman University, and the College of the Holy Cross spent many hours studying the pages of Venetus A in high-resolution facsimile browser and deciphering its scholia (the marginal notes).

This work is now continuing here at the UW. During the 2012-2013 academic year our team will work on Book 23 in Venetus A and collaborate with the long-standing faculty-student team at the College of the Holy Cross, with whom we hope to interact via e-mail and skype sessions. The work is already underway and our team is growing, now numbering four Classics (or Greek and Latin) majors: Molly Ostheller, Devin Gleeson, Malia Piper and Allen Snider.  As the faculty member on the team I will support their work and do my best to answer at least some of their questions—about Homer: in terms on technical know-how I have no hopes of ever catching up to the students.

To find out more about Homer Multitext go to:

Devin Gleeson and his group at the CHS