Department of Classical Studies

Francis Anthony Laine

F. Laine
Frank Laine
(Image from Pine Needles Yearbook 1962)
(Image from Pine Needles Yearbook 1969)


Francis Anthony Jerome Joseph Laine was born on December 21, 1916 in Memphis, TN, received a B.S. at Memphis State College in 1939, and taught in the public schools until 1942 when he joined the U. S. Army, serving for three years and spending 18 months as a translator and interpretor in England, France, and Germany.  After studying at the Sorbonne in 1946, he earned his PhD from Vanderbilt University in 1949, having written a dissertation on "The Angevin Formulae: a Translation with Linguistic Commentary."  He joined the faculty as an Assistant Professor and Head of the Department of Classical Civilization in 1949 and, in 1952, was one of 12 recipients of a General Education fellowship at Harvard University from the Carnegie Corporation.  In an interview the following year, he said "Through general education courses, the humanities, natural sciences and social sciences are grouped in an attempt to hit the high points and reduce them to what everyone should know along with their college education."  Frank Laine was a good cook who loved music and cabinet making but, above all, he is remembered as an inspiring teacher.  He stepped down as Department Head in 1978, but continued teaching until his death in January, 1980.