Press Release

Ohio Wesleyan Classics Professor Releases First Book In New Trilogy

February 18, 2016 – by Cole Hatcher


Lee Fratantuono, Ph.D., Begins Exploration of Roman Military History with ‘The Battle of Actium’

DELAWARE, Ohio – Ohio Wesleyan University professor Lee Fratantuono has published a new book on the Battle of Actium and its impact on the course of Roman imperial history. The book is the first in a new trilogy of Roman history volumes set for release by the prolific author.

“Actium was a battle that mattered,” said Fratantuono, Ph.D., Ohio Wesleyan’s director of Classics and the university’s William Francis Whitlock Professor of Latin.

The Battle of Actium was fought in 31 B.C. between the forces of Octavian and his admiral, Agrippa, on one side, and Mark Antony and his lover, Cleopatra of Egypt, on the other. It was the decisive engagement of a long campaign that ended in the complete victory of Octavian and a new course for Roman history.

Fratantuono’s book, “The Battle of Actium, 31 B.C.: War for the World,” offers a new examination of the battle, with close analysis of the many primary sources (both prose and poetry) that describe or reference the complicated course of events on that fateful September day in the waters off northwestern Greece.

“The Battle of Actium” is the first of three titles Fratantuono has contracted with Pen & Sword Books in the United Kingdom for the publisher’s series on Roman military conquests and Roman military biographies.

These books also will feature the work of Ohio Wesleyan graduate and freelance photographer Katie McGarr, Class of 2010.

“It is a great experience to travel in lands I first studied about in Professor Fratantuono’s Classics courses, and it has been a pleasure to blend my interests in Classics and field photography,” McGarr said. “I am looking forward to continue contributing photographic material for these exciting projects.”

Fratantuono, who joined the Ohio Wesleyan faculty in 2005, is a specialist in Latin epic poetry and imperial Roman history. His previous books include “A Reading of Lucretius’ De Rerum Natura” (2015), “Ovid, Metamorphoses X” (2014), “Madness Triumphant: A Reading of Lucan’s Pharsalia” (2012), “Madness: Transformed: A Reading of Ovid’s Metamorphoses” (2011), “A Commentary on Virgil, Aeneid XI” (2009), and “Madness Unchained: A Reading of Virgil’s Aeneid” (2007).

 Learn more about Fratantuono and Ohio Wesleyan’s Classics Program at

Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier liberal arts universities. Located in Delaware, Ohio, the private university offers 87 undergraduate majors and competes in 23 NCAA Division III varsity sports. Ohio Wesleyan combines a challenging, internationally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities to connect classroom theory with real-world experience. OWU’s 1,675 students represent 43 U.S. states and territories and 33 countries. Ohio Wesleyan is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” listed on the latest President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction, and included in the U.S. News & World Report and Princeton Review “best colleges” lists. Learn more at