Olympic Games — Then and Now — Examined in Archaeological Institute of America Lecture

With the XXth Winter Olympics set to begin in Turin, Italy in less than a month, Lawrence University Hiram A. Jones Professor of Classics Daniel Taylor offers a historic perspective on the celebrated games and explain why the Olympics are “not just another sporting event” in an Archaeological Institute of America lecture at Lawrence University.

Taylor presents “The Olympic Games 776 B.C. — 2006 A.D.” Tuesday, Jan. 17 at 7:30 p.m. in Lawrence’s Wriston Art Center auditorium. The event is free and open to the public and includes a reception with the speaker following the address.

Taylor’s slide-illustrated presentation will tour the ancient Olympic stadium as well as the first modern one, introduce gods and goddesses and provide a glimpse of ancient Greek athletes in action as well as the exploits of modern Olympic heroes. He also will compare and contrast the ancient and modern games and offer philosophical reflections on the nature of athletic competition.

Considered one of the world’s leading scholars on Marcus Terentius Varro (116-27 BC), ancient Rome’s most prolific and authoritative language scientist, Taylor earned a bachelor’s degree in classics from Lawrence and his Ph.D. in classics from the University of Washington before joining the Lawrence faculty in 1974.

He has been the recipient of two research fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and been cited by the American Philological Association with its National Award for Excellence in Teaching the Classics.