OUR CURRICULUM: LITERATURE

Here follows The Lyceum literature list. While not all works are read each year, nonetheless, students will encounter a good portion of these works in any one year. The books for students in grades nine through twelve are culled from the great books of Western Civilization; “the best of what has been thought or said.” The great works of literature are divided into four sections: The great books of Greece and Rome, England, America, and the World, respectively. That the wealth might be shared by all, each section also includes a good bit of poetry and some Shakespeare.

Since students should read good books before grappling with the great, the works read in grades seven and eight are taken from the best of the good stories, novels, plays, and poems, as well as a few of the more accessible great books of Western Civilization.

Grades 7 and 8 "Good Books"

  • The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
  • Gods, Heroes, and Men of Ancient Greece – W.H.D. Rouse
  • Fables – Aesop
  • The Jungle Book – Rudyard Kipling
  • A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
  • The Adventures of Robin Hood – Howard Pyle
  • Rip Van Winkle – Washington Irving
  • The Book of Esther Ruth, Tobit, Maccabees, Jonah etc.- Old Testament

Story Poems:

  • Hiawatha, Paul Revere’s Ride – Longfellow
  • Charge of the Light Brigade – Alfred, Lord Tennyson
  • The Pied Piper of Hamelin – Robert Browning
  • Pocahontas – Stephen Vincent and Rosemary Benet
  • Cremation of Sam McGee – Robert Service
  • O Captain My Captain – Walt Whitman
  • The Ballad of the Goodly Fere – Ezra Pound

  • Swiss Family Robinson – J. Wyss
  • King Arthur – Howard Pyle
  • Treasure Island – Robert Louis Stevenson
  • Robinson Crusoe – Daniel Defoe
  • Hound of the Baskervilles, Red Headed League etc. - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
  • The Song of Roland
  • Cyrano de Bergerac – Edmond Rostand
  • Tom Sawyer – Mark Twain
  • Call of the Wild – Jack London
  • Pygmalion – George Bernard Shaw
  • The Purloined Letter – Edgar Allen Poe
  • The Gift of the Magi – O. Henry
  • The Necklace – Guy de Maupassant
  • Poetry – The Great Speeches of Shakespeare
  • “All the World’s a Stage” – As You like It
  • “The quality of Mercy is not strain’d” – Merchant
  • “To Be or Not to Be” – Hamlet
  • “Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow” – MacBeth
  • “Friends, Romans, Countrymen” - Julius Caesar
  • “This day is called the Feast of Crispian” – Henry V
  • “Once more unto the breach, dear friends” - Henry V

Grades 9 and 10 Classical and English Literature

  • The Greek and Roman Myths - Original Sources
  • The Odyssey – Homer (Tr. Fitzgerald)
  • Alcestis - Aeschylus
  • Antigone - Sophocles
  • Poetics – Aristotle (selections)
  • Poetry of the Greeks and Romans:
  • The Homeric Hymns
  • The Theogony - Hesiod
  • Olympian, Nemian, and Isthmian Odes – Pindar
  • The Georgics – Virgil
  • Lives: Julius Caesar – Plutarch
  • Julius Caesar – Shakespeare
  • A Comedy of Errors – Shakespeare
  • Norse Myths
  • Beowulf – Tr. Seamus Heaney
  • Canterbury Tales: Prologue and selected tales – Geoffrey Chaucer
  • Sir Gawain and the Green Knight – Anon. trans. Tolkien
  • Everyman
  • Macbeth
  • Henry the Fifth
  • Twelfth Night
  • Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • The Tempest
  • A Tale of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
  • Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
  • Edmund Campion – Evelyn Waugh
  • British Poetry:
    • Anonymous Songs and Ballads
    • Geoffrey Chaucer
    • Edmund Spenser
    • Philip Sidney
    • Christopher Marlowe
    • John Donne
    • Robert Herrick
    • George Herbert
    • Thomas Carew
    • Richard Crashaw
    • John Milton
    • Richard Lovelace
    • Andrew Marvell
    • John Dryden
    • Christopher Smart
    • Thomas Traherne
    • Alexander Pope
    • Lord Byron
    • John Keats
    • Percy Bysshe Shelley
    • Robert Blake
    • Samuel Coleridge
    • William Wordsworth
    • Robert and Elizabeth Browning
    • Matthew Arnold
    • William Butler Yeats
    • Alfred Lord Tennyson
    • Dante and Christina Rossetti
    • Gerard Manley Hopkins
    • Hillaire Belloc
    • G.K. Chesterton.

Grades 11 and 12 American Literature and Great Books

  • The Scarlet Letter – Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Billy Budd, Bartleby the Scrivener – Herman Melville
  • Red Badge of Courage – Stephen Crane
  • Huckleberry Finn, Joan of Arc – Mark Twain
  • Up From Slavery – Booker T. Washington
  • The Virginian – Wister
  • The Last of the Mohicans – J. F. Cooper
  • My Antonia – Death Comes for the Archbishop – Willa Cather
  • The Bridge of San Luis Rey – Thornton Wilder
  • The Secret Life of Walter Mitty – James Thurber
  • A Good Man Is Hard to Find, Revelation – Flannery O’Connor
  • Othello – Shakespeare
  • Taming of the Shrew – Shakespeare
  • Sonnets of Shakespeare
  • American Poetry:
    • Anne Bradstreet
    • Francis Scott Key
    • William Cullen Bryant
    • Sojourner Truth
    • Ralph Waldo Emerson
    • Henry David Thoreau
    • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
    • John Greenleaf Whittier
    • Edgar Allen Poe
    • Oliver Wendell Holmes
    • Richard Henry Dana
    • Edward Taylor
    • Amy Lowell
    • Walt Whitman
    • Emily Dickinson
    • Louisa May Alcott
    • Brett Harte
    • Sidney Lanier
    • Edwin Arlington Robinson
    • Robert Frost
    • William Carlos Williams
    • Ezra Pound
    • Edna St. Vincent Millay
    • e.e.cummings
    • Stephan Vincent Benet
    • Allen Tate
    • Langston Hughes
    • Ogden Nash
    • Robert Penn Warren
    • T.S. Eliot.
  • The Iliad – Homer
  • Oedipus Rex, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone – Sophocles
  • The Aeneid – Virgil
  • The Divine Comedy – Dante Alighieri
  • Don Quixote – Miguel Cervantes
  • Pride and Prejudice – Emma - Jane Austen
  • Hamlet – Shakespeare
  • As You Like It – Shakespeare
  • The Death of Ivan Illych – Leo Tolstoy
  • World Poetry:
    • Petrarch
    • Ranier Maria Rilke
    • Charles Peguy, Paul Claudel
    • Alexander Pushkin
    • Basho
    • Goethe
    • Holderlin.