Contact Us

Technical Services Units:

Greek & Latin Literature

This special classification scheme for Greek and Latin literature was first devised, organized, and put into use at the University of Illinois Library in 1923. Over the years, names and numbers were added and inserted, paper deteriorated and copies wore out through use until a complete and systematic revision became an absolute necessity. This has been accomplished through a thorough checking of the shelflist and, in many instances, also, the Main Card Catalog. In the process of revision the authors' names have been made to correspond with the forms used for catalog entries, many individual titles and their work marks have been added, and the special listings of titles by voluminous authors have been moved to their proper alphabetical places within the scheme.

This revision of the Classics schedule lists only the author numbers and the special work marks for titles which are actually represented in the University of Illinois Library shelflist. Because the Library's col­lection of Classical literature is very large and therefore contains rep­resentative editions of nearly all known Classical titles, the scheme does provide for most of the Classical authors by or about whom books are now available. In order that they may be recorded in the master copy and incorporated into future revisions, all additions to this scheme are to be submitted for approval by the Catalog Librarian.

Classification and Author Tables for Greek and Latin Authors

Latin authors are classified in 871.
Greek authors are classified in 881.
Note: carefully the use of the period to separate elements of the call number.

Arrangement of an author's works

Complete Works

  1. Complete works, arranged by year.

    e.g., Homer
    For a set, use the earliest date.
    If there are two sets of the same year, the second, third, etc. will be marked by a final letter after the date, e.g.:
    Before 1948, a superior number was used following the date to distinguish between editions of the same date, e.g.:;
    1932 2
    Where this system has already been established for a particular number, retain it.
    If only one work of an author is extant, treat it as "complete works."

  2. Translations of complete works are arranged by the language of the translations. D, Dutch; DA, Danish; E, English; F, French; G, German; GR, Greek; I, Italian; L, Latin; R, Russian; S, Spanish; SW, Swedish.


    e.g., Homer in English by Bryant
    a. Always add the initial of the translator. If no translator is found, add the date.
    e.g., Homer in English by Pope
    b. If there is more than one edition by the same translator, add the date.
    e.g., 2nd edition of Pope's Homer
    c. If two translators have the same initial, add a second letter.
    e.g., Prescott's Homer
    These translations may be without notes or have notes for a beginner learning the language, etc.

  3. A Bibliography of complete works is marked V, followed by the initial of the compiler.

  4. A Biography of the author is marked W, followed by the initial of the biographer.

  5. A Criticism of complete works is marked Y, without regard to the language of the critic, followed by the initial of the critic, e.g.:

    Conat's Aristophane et l'ancienne comedia Attique 881
    Dignan's Idle actor in Aeschylus 881
    Scholia of Homer, by Dindorf 881
    A second and other criticism by the same author is indicated by the figures 2, 3, 4, etc. Enter paraphrases under Y. Scholia are classed in Y.

  6. Dictionaries, Concordances, etc. are marked Z followed by the initial of the editor.


    Autenrieth's Homeric dictionary 881

Fragments and Selections

Fragments and selections are marked with X and are arranged by year.

e.g., Selections of Plato

If the author's works are only fragments, i.e. nearly all are lost, they are treated as complete works. Selections of Cicero are provided for in a special table.

a. Translations of fragments and selections: add the language letter as in complete works, thus:
Translations into English of Selections of Plato
Add translator's initial as in complete works. For other selections by same translator, add figures 2, 3, etc.
b. If selections are nearly or practically complete works, classify as complete works. Selections of a part of an individual work are classed with the individual work, e.g.: Books 1-6 of the Iliad will go with the Iliad.

Individual Works

  1. Individual works of an author are arranged by a special table if one has been established; if not, by the initial of the distinctive word of the title. If two or three individual works are published together but they do not apparently constitute a "selection" arrange as if there were but a single work. In case of doubt, class here rather than in "Selections." The Iliad and Odyssey together are classified under the Iliad.

    a. If no editor is given, arrange by date.
    Homer's Iliad
    b. When an editor is given, omit the date and add editor's initial. These editions will file following the dated editions without an editor.
    Homer's Illiad, ed. by Bruce
    Homer's Illiad, ed. by Schmidt
    c. Another edition by Bruce:
    d. For several editions by the same editor with varying titles , use 2, 3, etc.

  2. Translations of individual works are marked by the letter of the language of translation, as in complete works, E for English, etc.

    Bryant's translation of the Iliad 881
    Pope's translation of the Iliad 881
    Pope's translation of the Iliad, another edition 881
    Prescott's translation of the Iliad 881
    German tr. by Schmidt of Iliad 881
    Spanish tr. by Le Sage of Iliad 881
    Hugo's tr. of Odyssey 881

  3. Selections and fragments of individual works are treated as though complete, i.e. X is not used after the initial letter of the title.

    Do not use: 881
    for a part of the Illiad.

  4. For the bibliography of an individual work, add V after the initial letter of the work, followed by the initial of the compiler.

    N.Y. Pub. Lib. bibl. of editions of Aeneid 871

  5. For a criticism of an individual work, add Y after the initial of the work, then the initial of the critic. Disregard the language of the text if it appears, and the language of the critic.

    Dindorf's Homeric Iliad Scholia 881
    Leaf's Companion to the Iliad 881
    Sniderfs Homer's Iliad, a commentary 881

  6. A Dictionary or Concordance of an individual work is marked Z.


    Schmidt's Dictionary of the Iliad 881

      Latin Greek
    General works 870 880
    Collections 872 882
    Anonymns 871A 881A

    Use regular Cutter numbers and take the work mark from the editor. Take book mark from distinctive word of title.

Classification Numbers

870 General works on Latin literature
871A Anonymous works in Latin
(For book no. use Cutter two-figure table, with the initial of the distinctive word of the title, and work mark from the name of the editor.)
872 Collections of Latin prose or poetry
873-874 NOT USED
875 Medieval and modern Latin literature, 500 A.D. - date
(Use decimals .1 - .7 as in Dewey 879, with .8 for Collections and .9 for History and criticism. Class complete works of authors and works not belonging under the forms .1 - .7 under 875.)
876-878 NOT USED
879 Classical literature-History and criticism.
(This is used to cover works treating both Latin and Greek authors or literature)
879.8 Collections of both Latin and Greek literature.

Use corresponding classification for Greek.

Include Byzantine writers in 881 and use 889 for literature in medieval and modern Greek. (Byzantine period, A.D. 527 to 1453)

Use 885 for Modern literature in the Ancient Greek language.


Author Tables

Detailed tables for individual classical authors are available with the Classics Cataloger, the Catalog Librarian and the Assistant Catalog Librarian.

The Loeb Classics Set

The Library acquires on standing order one copy of each title published in the Loeb Classical Library. These are classified in either 871L82 or 881L82 and the Cutter is for the particular classical author, with a work mark for the title of the individual work.

Do not add copies to the Loeb set. Added copies of Loebs already in the Library are to be classified in the regular Classics scheme.

Do not use the date in the call number.