Teacher's Guide to using Vergil's Thesaurus

Hadrumatum mosaic of Vergil

Background: Vergil's Thesaurus is a room in the VRoma MOO designed to host online discussions of the Aeneid. It was first used during the 1999-2000 academic year by Marianthe Colakis, whose Advanced Placement Vergil class at The Covenant School in Virginia met regularly to discuss the Aeneid with Barbara McManus, Professor of Classics at The College of New Rochelle in New York. Logs of all those discussions are available in the room. To consult the logs, click on the chest labeled scribal tablets, then click on the log you want to read; when finished with one log, click the up arrow at the top of the web frame to return to the scribal tablets. After some initial difficulties with the technology setup at The Covenant School, the discussions proved to be very successful, greatly enjoyed by students and faculty alike; the Thesaurus has been used with several subsequent AP Vergil classes.

Directions to the Room: New visitors to VRoma should have a copy of the Quick Start Guide to the VRoma Learning Environment so they will have basic information about navigation and communication, plus features like the VRoma Notebook HTML Chat Log. Log in to the MOO with your character name and password or as a guest, then teleport to the Thesaurus by typing @go Vergil's and pressing Enter (or you may go to Rome and click on Region V in the map of the 14 regions).

Contents of the Room: The room is decorated with an image of the Hadrumatum mosaic of Vergil seated between the muses of history and tragedy; the room text provides more information about this mosaic plus basic instructions on how to access the room's resources. Besides the scribal tablets chest containing logs of the 1999-2000 discussions, there are five strongboxes, labeled Book 1 chest, Book 2 chest, Book 4 chest, Book 6 chest, and Books 10-12 chest, containing images of artifacts that can be used as springboards for discussion of particular sections of the Aeneid, keyed to the required passages on the AP syllabus. Each of the images is accompanied by discussion questions and links to specific lines from the text (which appear in a small pop-up window for ease of reference). The room also contains three benches which can be used for small, private discussions.

Some Potential Uses of the Room:

If you have any questions about the Thesaurus or its uses, do not hesitate to contact Barbara McManus.

Project Co-Directors: Barbara F. McManus (The College of New Rochelle) and Suzanne Bonefas (Rhodes College)
Web Design: Barbara F. McManus and Daniel Jung (University of Bergen)