Are doctoral dissertations still permitted to be spoken in Latin at any of the Pontifical Universities in or around Rome?

  • 3
    This is about the customs for when and where Latin is spoken, so I believe it's on topic.
    – Ben Kovitz
    Commented Jun 13, 2016 at 2:29
  • 1
    Erkki Palmén's dissertation De adverbiis pronominalibus localibus Latinis studia semantica et syntactica about Latin was defended in Latin on November 28, 1998, at the University of Jyväskylä. As far as I know, this was the last Latin dissertation in Finland and the first one for almost 70 years. I believe Latin is still allowed in dissertations in Finland if there are people to do it. There are not pontifical universities in Finland.
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    Commented Jun 13, 2016 at 4:51
  • Do you mean dissertation or disputation?
    – fdb
    Commented Jun 16, 2016 at 23:24
  • @fdb I am interested in the dissertation or thesis at the academic level and not the disputation of the thesis involved, although that would be an interesting point to know also!
    – Ken Graham
    Commented Jun 17, 2016 at 0:24
  • A "dissertation" is a written thesis. A "disputation" is the oral defense of the thesis. In Britain we call it a "viva".
    – fdb
    Commented Jun 17, 2016 at 9:00

1 Answer 1


Vatican Latinist Fr. Daniel Gallagher, whom I met several years ago at event sponsored by SALVI, told me then that he was working on a dissertation in Latin. This dissertation was for a doctorate in philosophy at the Pontifical Gregorian University. So apparently at least one of the Pontifical Universities still accepts Latin dissertations.

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