Lina Girdvainyte

Lina Girdvainyte
Ancient History Postgraduate, October 2015

Before coming to Oxford, I was lucky enough to have studied in three different countries: while completing my BA in Classical (Greek and Latin) Philology at the University of Vilnius, Lithuania, I studied on exchange at Philipps Universität Marburg in Germany, and have subsequently continued on with a (Res)MA in Classics and Ancient Civilizations at Leiden University, the Netherlands. It was in Leiden that I developed a passion toward legal history and, in particular, various aspects of legal environment in the provinces of the Roman Empire. The desire to explore this field further led me to the pursuit of my postgraduate degree in Ancient History at Oxford University. My DPhil work, although still in its formative phase, is looking at the spread of Roman law and citizenship into the Greek East, more specifically, the Roman provinces of Macedonia and Achaia. By combining the questions of legal and civic change, I intend to enhance our understanding of both legal and socio-political history of the region under Rome. 

Oxford was my number one choice for postgraduate work primarily due to great research facilities, availability of resources, rich library and museum collections, as well as a cohort of renowned scholars working on a variety of issues and topics pertinent to the ancient world. Apart from one‘s direct supervisor, who plays the most important role in postgraduate researcher‘s academic advance, genuine support, advice and intellectually stimulating discussions are wholeheartedly offered by a number of Faculty members, college advisors, and fellow students. There is a range of seminars and lectures to choose from, including modern language courses tailored specifically to classicists, as well as work-in-progress seminars run by graduates themselves, thus stimulating both individual progress and reflection on one another‘s work. All of the above, complemented with a variety of available extracurricular activities and the thriving atmosphere of a historic city, is what makes classical studies at Oxford University a truly unique experience. For, to quote Hilaire Belloc, ‘there are few greater temptations on earth than to stay permanently at Oxford in meditation, and to read all the books in the Bodleian’.  

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