Daily Archives: August 9, 2020

The Barlow-Beach Award for 2020

On August 7th, 2020, Immediate Past President, John Higgins, presented the Barlow Beach award to this year’s winner, Elizabeth Keitel of the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The event was a socially-distanced private lunch, and not as usual, a part of the Annual Meeting banquet.

The inscription on the bowl reads, on the front:





And on the back:


That is, in Mattingly’s translation, “May we honour you in better ways by our admiration, by our undying praise, even, if our powers permit, by following your example.” 

For those who were not able to join us at the Zoom meeting in July, the full citation is as follows:

“I think it is right for us to begin honoring one of our own classicists from New England by remembering those who gave their names to this award: Claude Barlow and Goodwin Beach. When CANE decided to institute this award in the late 1970s, it was intended to honor their memory as scholars, teachers, and activists for classics. Barlow of Clark University, a scholar of medieval Latin and editor of the apocryphal Letters of Seneca and Paul, was Secretary-Treasurer for a generation and in many ways was the embodiment of CANE. Beach was closely associated with Trinity College, but started his career in the business world. He never lost his love for Latin and commitment to its promotion and maintained a fervent interest in spoken living Latin. After retirement he came back to Trinity to teach Latin and was involved not only in CANE but in the APA (as it was). And he was so devoted to spoken Latin that he wrote his financial reports to the APA in Latin elegiacs! And in a mundane example, Allen Ward recalls Beach’s first words at CANE meetings were “Ubi mingitur?”

“However, we are here to recognize one person today, the latest CANE member to earn the honor we have named for those two. It is a real pleasure and honor for me to announce this year’s Barlow-Beach winner. I will attempt to maintain some suspense in the announcement, as we usually do, by dropping clues to the identity of the person as we get closer to the award, avoiding personal pronouns until it becomes too awkward to omit them. Of course, this year is different, and perhaps the cat is already out of the bag. If so, all we can say then is “eek!”

“We are honoring a distinguished classicist from New England, not a New England native, but who all the same spent a childhood among ivy covered walls. New England was to become an academic home, first for undergraduate studies, and eventually professionally. After a time at a distinguished Southern university for graduate school, the pull of New England proved strong, and a particular part of our region at that. A peripatetic start to a career in the classical classroom led to a more settled life, in a college town not far from the town of her undergraduate studies. 

“For many years she has taught in the classics department at one of the leading institutions for the training of Latin teachers in the country, serving as the department chair and, maybe more importantly, the director of the graduate program, one of the foremost programs for Latin teacher training in the country. As such her influence on secondary Latin teaching in the US has been immeasurable. 

“No less, her scholarship has been incredibly influential. Her special interest in Tacitus had led to a series of very important articles, and recently she has organized scholarly conferences on the satirist Lucilius and on Urban Disasters in Ancient Rome, and has edited collections of essays deriving from those conference. As a teacher she is well known to all of her students as tough and demanding, and devoted to their success. She has even been able to serve on several doctoral dissertation committees in other departments and other universities.

“Her devotion to our association is strong and long-lasting. I find in the archives that in the very first year in the institution that was to become her academic home, she displayed an immediate affinity for CANE, giving a paper on Tacitus that spring at the Annual Meeting. She continued her involvement with CANE over the succeeding decades, giving papers and being involved in workshops on teaching as well. In 2014-15, she served as a distinguished CANE President.

“I am happy to present this year’s Barlow-Beach Award to the distinguished teacher and scholar of the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and devoted daughter of Chicago, where the Cubs play among the ivy-covered walls of Wrigley Field, Professor Elizabeth Keitel.”