October 9, 2008

Latin revival

Enrollment in Latin classes here in this Westchester County suburb has increased by nearly one-third since 2006, to 187 of the district's 10,500 students
Alas, still a tiny number in total.
The resurgence of a language once rejected as outdated and irrelevant is reflected across the country as Latin is embraced by a new generation of students . . .

The number of students in the United States taking the National Latin Exam has risen steadily to more than 134,000 students in each of the past two years, from 124,000 in 2003 and 101,000 in 1998, with large increases in remote parts of the country like New Mexico, Alaska and Vermont.

"Remote parts"?! Oh, that metropolitan bias, showing through once again.
The number of students taking the Advanced Placement test in Latin, meanwhile, has nearly doubled over the past 10 years, to 8,654 in 2007.
From the NY Times.

Posted by David on October 9, 2008 9:31 AM



Is a general site with links for Latin study online with the Wheelock's Latin textbook. There are sites dealing with practice exercises and pronunciation that are helpful.

I have had great success taking the courses run by volunteers for the Wheelock's Latin textbook:

For adults who are not able to get to classes or pay for distance education (which in previous years were almost non-existent for Latin), these are a great alternative, and have been operating since 1995.

I still have my Wheelock's Latin book as well as the following books, readily available for purchase from Amazon, that are also studied on the above mailing lists:

- Latin via Ovid : A First Course by Norma Goldman and Jacob E. Nyenhuis
- Thirty-Eight Latin Stories : Designed to Accompany Wheelock's Latin by Anne H. Groton and James M. May
- A Comprehensive Guide to Wheelock's Latin by Dale A. Grote

I also bought a very handy book that was recommended to me called "English Grammar for Students of Latin : The Study Guide for Those Learning Latin" by Norma W. Goldman.

Most languages have roots in Latin, including English, so I have found Latin a great path to learning in general. I recently bought an Italian dictionary and have been translating two Italian card decks I purchased, and finding the wonder of Latin realized in Italian.

It's interesting that there is a resurgence in respect and study of the language, perhaps because it's fairly easy to learn and with so many people travelling these days, they appreciate the history and semantics of Latin more?

Posted by: Judith Johnston on October 11, 2008 10:12 AM

It would be great if Parishes would offer Latin studies for the Mass, not to learn the entire language but Latin that is particular to the Mass and Sacraments.. It would promote a closer connection with our history as Catholics and at the same time not feel overwhelming to those of us who do not want to study an entire language. Then perhaps a few would seek a deeper study of the language itself... Seeing it and haring it in use in out parishes would give more reason for in depth learning. Maybe that is the place to start.

Posted by: Mitchell on November 22, 2008 3:30 PM
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