LRHS Latin Club studies artifacts first hand

Lauren Hopkins – Mustangs Ahead

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – The LRHS Latin Club went on their first field trip April 15. The members have been planning for this trip since November and have researched pieces of Roman and Greek inspired artwork ever since.

Scott Baker, freshman, said, “Being able to compare different pieces of art from different time periods was my favorite part of the field trip.”

Baker further commented, “I found it fascinating how old some of the art was. Some of the ancient sculptures and pottery from the Mediterranean and Asia were dated to over 2000 years old.”

He added, “It was my first time at the Ringling and I will definitely go back soon. I just wished we had more time to look at all the art pieces since there was so much to see and we were only there for three hours.

“My piece that I choose to research and present whilst at the Ringling Museum was the ‘Circe Entertains Odysseus’ which was a painting of Odysseus and Circe from Homers Odyssey.”

This was one of the last Latin Club events for senior Julie Cotton, so it was nice spending time with everyone.

Cotton added, “I was fascinated by the analysis Mrs. M (LRHS Latin teacher Stefania Mitzithras) provided of a statue of Laöcoon. Even though the story is sad, it’s an amazing piece of artwork. I also enjoyed the exhibits on medieval manuscripts and the Asian art. The Pathless Woods were also a lot of fun.”

She also said, “It was amazing to be able to read certain bits of Latin in the artwork, such as the ancient manuscript suitably titled ‘Noli me Tangere’ (‘Don’t Touch Me’).”

Cotton admitted that she wishes she could do the field trip again next year if she wasn’t graduating, and she wishes the Latin Club the best of luck in the future and that they are “a wonderful group of people.”

“It was not my first time visiting the Ringling, but I enjoyed seeing it through fresh eyes and learning about things from an academic perspective,” she added.

Cotton researched a variety of pieces including statues from Cyprus and loved learning their backstories.

Senior Mathew Estes said his favorite part was seeing pieces of art that he had always seen in textbooks and seeing how more impactful it is to see the paintings in person.

Estes exclaimed, “The coolest piece of art I saw was the statue of ‘Laocoon and His Two Sons,’ the sculptor did an amazing job of capturing the emotions of pain and horror of Laocoon described in Vergil’s Aeneid.”

He also said, “My favorite thing I learned was the similarities between Minerva’s (Athena’s) birth and the ‘double birth’ of the Greek gods and how it was thought that she was going to overthrow Jupiter (Zeus) as most sons did to their powerful parents.”

He said he wishes they could have stayed a little longer and possibly had more background information about more pieces of art while visiting the museum.

Estes further added, “I had never been to the Ringling before but I would love to go back and explore more after this trip.”

He ended with, “I researched a piece called ‘Agrippina and Her Children Mourning Over the Ashes of Germanicus’ which was an interesting piece with a lot of straight forward but powerful symbolism tying Roman history into the ideals of the neoclassical era of art very well.”

Olivia Miller, freshman, also enjoyed the trip, “My favorite part was the pathless wood and how everyone who went through it went on their own unique path different from everyone else’s.”

She further stated, “The coolest piece for me was found in the five senses exhibit.  On the outside, it looked like a little walnut but when it is opened it was so beautifully and intricately carved. I thought it was incredible how someone could have the patience and time to carve something so detailed and precise with the technology they had at that time.”

She then explained, “My favorite thing I learned was when Mrs. Mitzithras was explaining about the Titan IV and we got very in depth about it so we ended up talking about Athena and how she might have been the child of Jupiter who is destined to usurp him.”

Miller said that she would definitely want to do this field trip again.

However, Miller stated, “The only thing that could be changed is the amount of people that went.  I think it would be cooler if more people went and researched pieces so we could get more in depth knowledge of some pieces.”

She said, “This was my first time going to the Ringling Museum and I am definitely planning on going to the Ringling again.”

Miller researched the “Faun with Grapes and Goat,” which was a statute in the courtyard.

She commented on her researched piece stating, “I found it really cool with all the symbolic aspects with it.”