Calvert Claims 4th and 11th Place at 27-Team Harvard Certamen
Nine Calvert Eighth Graders recently participated in the 13th annual Harvard Certamen, a Latin quiz bowl in which teams compete to answer questions about Latin grammar and literature, classical culture, history, and mythology. The competition was deep, with perennial powerhouses from Boston Latin School, Harriton High School, Philips Exeter Academy, Milton Academy, Brookfield Academy, Roxbury Latin School, Avon Old Farms School, and Hunter College High School among the 27 teams represented.
When the students arrived in Boston on Friday afternoon, they explored delicious food in the North End and then wanted to get to their hotel room for a good night's sleep before the competition.
"Typical of this group, they spent the remaining hour or so quizzing each other," said Calvert's Latin teacher Jeff Snow.
The Harvard Certamen 2023 keynote speaker was Dr. Naomi Weiss, who talked about using art and literature to connect to the ancient Greek playwrights, demonstrating what the instruments and the chorus would have sounded like.
The Eighth Grade team of Esme I., Chiara B., Vivien W., Caroline M., Will C., and Graham G. sandwiched two second-place finishes around a victory over Boston Latin and Philips Exeter, earning them 260 points and a tie for 11th place, just 10 points behind 10th place Roxbury Latin, and 50 points from taking the ninth and final playoff spot. It was also the second-highest score earned by a Calvert team in a national Certamen. Their only losses came to semi-finalists Dover High School (9th place) and Boston Latin's A team (3rd place).
The team of Johanna P., Claire S., and Liam D. won all three of their rounds, earning first place in all three rounds while defeating Dover High School and Brookfield, who qualified for the final two semi-final spots. Their combined score of 510 points was the most recorded by a Calvert team since we began competing nationally three years ago. It was also good enough for fourth place behind only teams from Harriton, Philips Exeter, and Boston Latin, all four of whom often finish at or near the top in national events.
Calvert's combined total of 770 points for the two teams placed Calvert 5th behind only Harriton, Philips Exeter, Brookfield, and Boston Latin -- only Brookfield and Boston Latin compete with middle schoolers.
"The students made their presence felt and established Calvert as one of the more talented teams this academic year," said Snow.
The day concluded with a special outing to Fenway Park, where our hometown team, the Baltimore Orioles, opened up their season against the Boston Red Sox.
Snow said, "We cannot thank enough all of those who helped pull this together and supported this amazing group along the way. Next up, Maryland State Certamen!"