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concerns about how to learn, and a need for tips and tricks

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concerns about how to learn, and a need for tips and tricks

Postby Mick90 » Wed Jun 11, 2014 2:50 am

Hi, just starting to learn a little latin. I'm using Wheelock's and have gone through the first chapter. I think I've done pretty well. However, it has raised some questions.

When translating the text about Horace's invitation from Maecenus and Virgil, I first wrote down a fairly literal, word for word, translation. It came of sounding antiquated and also foreign sounding. I then took that and translated it into a more modern form whilst retaining the same meaning and (I dunno, essence or feel, maybe)?

Which raised the question, should I attempt a more modern translation from the beginning, continue with my three part translation, or simply drop attempting to make a more modern sentence?

I feel doing all three would probably help, sort of like reading, speaking, and writing a new word helps memorise it. However, I fear that if I continue to do this, I may end up struggling to progress to actually understanding latin, not merely translating it to english to gain an understanding.

I guess I'm seeking some help. I'm attempting this solo, so I guess I'm trying to work out how to study a new language. It's pretty new to me.

On a different note, my plan is to use Wheelock's to gain an understanding of the grammar and some key vocabulary and then move onto ecclesiastical latin. I understand that while the vocabulary is somewhat different, the grammar holds between the two, right?
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Re: concerns about how to learn, and a need for tips and tri

Postby Phil- » Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:09 am

Hello again, Mick. I'm pretty new to Latin also, but I went through Wheelock's when I first started and have since found other worthwhile things to study post-Wheelock, so here are my two cents.

I think I recommended Orberg's LLPSI to you in your introductory thread (not sure since my post hasn't been approved yet!). LLPSI is great for moving from translation to natural reading.

Composition also has helped me to start "thinking in Latin" while constantly reinforcing grammar rules. The first composition books I used were Bennett's First Latin Writer and Bradley's Latin Exercises (both with keys).

Reading ecclesiastical Latin is good too because ecclesiastical is simpler (and because the Vulgate is freely available). More generally, medieval Latin tends to be easier than classical, and there are some good anthologies out there.
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