GROLA (Ghent Readers of Late Antiquity) is an informal reading group which meets once a year, alternating between Ghent University and LMU Munich or another institution.

Concept and organization

Marco Formisano (Ghent University)
Therese Fuhrer (LMU Munich)



UGent, 26 November 2021. 

Ps-Neilos, Narratio



For each meeting we plan to read and discuss a late antique text, Greek or Latin. We invite the participants to prepare and present a close reading by adopting a specific reading strategy, i.e. trying to understand the text ‚au premier degré‘, without necessarily taking into account intertextual references, allusions or any other kinds of relationship with earlier and especially classical texts, even when these intertexts are more or less explicitly presented as such. Instead, we want to focus on the text itself, by concentrating in particular on those narrative, conceptual and formal aspects which do not necessarily require a discussion of models.
The close reading we engage in is thus devoted to asking a relatively simple question, which might seem unusual in the context of current scholarship on late antique literature: Is it possible to read, interpret and appreciate late antique texts without recurring to the critical tendency of placing them within a net of constant allusions or reading them as reworkings of classical texts? For this reason GROLA is particularly interested in discussing those texts which have traditionally been considered „derivative.“


The reading group is divided into small units, each of which is responsible for leading discussion of a portion of the text previously assigned by the organizers of the meeting.

Dates and locations

The first meeting of GROLA took place at Ghent University on December 9, 2016 and was devoted to Juvencus’ Evangeliorum Libri IV.

The second meeting took place at LMU München on September 8, 2017. The text discussed was Claudianus Mamertus’ De statu animae.

The third meeting will take place at Ghent University on November 9, 2018. The text discussed was Dracontius, Satisfactio.

The fourth meeting will take place at the FAU Erlangen on November 15, 2019. The Text to be discussed is Ennodius, carm. 1, 9.


The hosting institution offers a lunch and a dinner. Each participant is responsible for travel and lodging expenses; a list of convenient hotels is provided for each meeting. The organizers will try to find sources of some financial support for junior participants, if needed.


Prof. Dr. Marco Formisano (Universiteit Gent)

Prof. Dr. Therese Fuhrer (LMU München)