1931: Yale Ends Era of Classics
NEW HAVEN, Connecticut: Departing from its practice during the 230 years of its existence, Yale University announced today that hereafter the study of the classics is not required for the degree of bachelor of arts, and that the degree of bachelor of philosophy will be discontinued. The decision is a victory for the faculty and the student body which in 1922 first recommended dispensing with the compulsory study of the classics. The university's trustees and members of the Yale Corporation, however, declined to accept this recommendation. Dropping the classics as degree requirements does not mean that the classics will not be taught at Yale in the future. They will be replaced by modern languages. Yale News, a campus publication, predicts that "when no longer tied to academic apron strings Greek and Hebrew fell. Similarly we venture to surmise that the rigors of the competitive and practical age will exact their toll upon Latin." Freshmen celebrated by holding a parade which ended with a huge bonfire into which they tossed Latin and Greek grammars.