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Which Latin Grammar

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Which Latin Grammar

Postby jadebono » Tue May 13, 2008 7:06 pm

Hi people,

I am looking for a Latin grammar as comprehensive and exhaustive as Smyth's. I’ve got all the usual references (Kennedy, Hillard & Botting, North & Hillard, Colebourne, Woodcock & Bradley’s Arnold). However, I lack an all-encompassing work of the stature of Smyth’s Greek grammar. I have been taught by means of the old English public school-Oxbridge system so I am unfamiliar with these American grammars that I see cited all over the place. Since acquiring Smyth and getting used to its complexity, I’ve developed a healthy respect for American textbooks and I suspect an American-authored Latin grammar is exactly what I’m looking for. Which of the alternatives would you recommend?

Many thanks
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Postby Rufus Gulielmus » Tue May 13, 2008 9:59 pm

Salve,

I've been referencing Allen & Greenough's New Latin Grammar from the College Classical Series (http://caratzas.com/index.cfm?category=19). So far, I don't have any real complaints. I opted for this one over the apparently more "user-friendly" Bennett grammar mostly for aesthetic reasons. Bennett uses Js instead of Is in some of his tables/example sentences. For some reason, this really bothers me. Also, I think the Bennett grammar is advertised as being concise--this didn't appeal to me, and I don't think it will appeal to you.

Gildersleeve also has a good one from what I hear, but I don't have any personal experience with it.

a link to Bennett: http://www.amazon.com/New-Latin-Grammar ... 767&sr=8-1

a link to Gildersleeve:
http://www.amazon.com/Gildersleeves-Lat ... 818&sr=1-1

Another factor that played into my decision is that Allen & Greenough's grammar was available at my school's bookstore. It was simply convenient.

Rufus

PS.
I'm sure you could find Allen & Greenough on amazon.com
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Postby jadebono » Tue May 13, 2008 11:02 pm

Hmm, I checked out the Gildersleeve and the Allen & Greenough and they seem almost exactly like the Kennedy to me - and that feels very lightweight compared with the Smyth. Perhaps it's due to the fact that Latin is not as complex as Greek and therefore does not require to be written up in the kind of massive reference work that Smyth is. Perhaps Kennedy and Bradley's Arnold really suffice for everything related to Latin. Many thanks...
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Postby benissimus » Tue May 13, 2008 11:04 pm

As a recent convert from Allen & Greenough's text, I recommend Gildersleeve's. It seems to me to be more thorough, to contain more examples, and to preserve the Latin quotes more faithfully than other texts which I have encountered. It is somewhat lacking compared to A&G with respect to its asides into historical linguistics, but there are other books specifically for that topic that overshadow both grammars.
flebile nescio quid queritur lyra, flebile lingua murmurat exanimis, respondent flebile ripae
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Postby Cato » Thu May 15, 2008 4:27 am

Ditto that recommendation for the Gildersleeve. The Latin citations are excellent, and I have yet to find a reference as detailed regarding versification and the stylistic trends in the various Latin poetic forms. I am unaware of a grammar that does for Latin what Smyth does for Greek.
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Postby Rufus Gulielmus » Thu May 15, 2008 6:47 am

I agree with the comparative complexity of Greek calling for something as exhaustive and thorough as Smyth.

Based on the other recommendations above, it looks like I might have to get my hands on a Gildersleeve. After all, one can't have too many references.

Rufus
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Postby jadebono » Thu May 15, 2008 7:16 pm

Rufus Gulielmus wrote:I agree with the comparative complexity of Greek calling for something as exhaustive and thorough as Smyth.

Based on the other recommendations above, it looks like I might have to get my hands on a Gildersleeve. After all, one can't have too many references.

Rufus


rem acu tetigisti. Bags me a copy of gildersleeve as well. Thanks to everyone for your help.
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