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Salvete! I'm new!

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Salvete! I'm new!

Postby Slappo » Wed Feb 25, 2009 5:29 am

Salvete!

I'm a senior college student in my second year of Latin studies currently slowly and painfully working through Wheelock's Latin Reader. I'd love to become very good at Latin, but I'm at the make it or break it point I think. Translations are extremely difficult and it is hard to apply the grammar I learned, but if I can get through where I am I think I can progress quickly.
Semper ubi sub ubi!
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Re: Salvete! I'm new!

Postby paulusnb » Wed Feb 25, 2009 5:44 am

Salve et tu.

Slappo wrote:but I'm at the make it or break it point I think.


No such thing. Keep it up. :D

Slappo wrote:Translations are extremely difficult and it is hard to apply the grammar I learned, but if I can get through where I am I think I can progress quickly.


The grammar will come in time. It took years for my teacher's lessons to sink in. My mind completely shut down when Dr. Pontes first mentioned the Subjunctive. In fact, I briefly thought about throwing him from a window.

But as Vergil says, even the remembrance of these things will bring forth pleasure.

And if it helps, I spent years being the worst latinist in the room. For the first three years I was surrounded by kids who had taken two-four years of it in high school. The difference was that I liked it and kept at it. Many of those students are now in jobs where they comfortably numb their minds from everything they learned in school.
When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the dunces are in a confederacy against him. ~Swift
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Re: Salvete! I'm new!

Postby Jacobus » Wed Feb 25, 2009 12:14 pm

Slappo wrote:Salvete!

I'm a senior college student in my second year of Latin studies currently slowly and painfully working through Wheelock's Latin Reader


Salve!

My experience with language (albeit not really with Latin, more with French and German) tells me that the more you stick with it, presuming you actually like it, the better you will become. At some points in my language learning career I've one day thought that my struggle was getting no-where, and the next day something would just click, and I'd be fine again. So, if you're enjoying Wheelock, then carry on with it.

If you're not, however, I would recommend (and I'm sure many others here would, too) that you look into Ørberg's Lingua Latina. It is an immersion text written entirely in Latin and you get new words from context and margin illustrations. Perhaps asking on here about it a little more, or reading about it on the net, would help you decide whether it was right for you, though. You can order it and read about it on amazon or http://www.pullins.com - directly from the publishers. I found that amazon were very slow delivering it, though, so perhaps try the pullins website? Being in your second year, I don't know how good your Latin actually is, as I never did Latin in school, unfortunately. I think, though, that you would eventually come to a chapter in Familia Romana (the first main text) where you would feel challenged. If not, there's always Roma Aeterna, which is the second text.

I hope some of what I've said is useful to some degree. Good luck.

Jack
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Re: Salvete! I'm new!

Postby thesaurus » Wed Feb 25, 2009 7:46 pm

paulusnb wrote: And if it helps, I spent years being the worst latinist in the room. For the first three years I was surrounded by kids who had taken two-four years of it in high school. The difference was that I liked it and kept at it. Many of those students are now in jobs where they comfortably numb their minds from everything they learned in school.


This is the truth. The only thing that really counts in learning Latin is perseverance and hard work. Like paulusnb says, you'll feel like you can never catch up those years that weren't studying Latin with other people, but in reality if you're serious about it you will be much better than they can ever hope to be. I had similar beginnings, and any success I've attained has nothing to do with intelligence, and everything to do with hard work. The fact that I felt I was so terrible at Latin bred an earnest desire to "catch up" which fortunately has not subsided.

As for the pain you're experiencing, it's not "make or break" exactly, but you reach a plateau in your learning after you've grown comfortable with the many grammatical elements you're trying to remember. Then you can really kick it into high gear and spend your time immersed in texts, learning new words and constructions.
Horae quidem cedunt et dies et menses et anni, nec praeteritum tempus umquam revertitur nec quid sequatur sciri potest. Quod cuique temporis ad vivendum datur, eo debet esse contentus. --Cicero, De Senectute
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Re: Salvete! I'm new!

Postby grdSavant » Fri Feb 27, 2009 9:34 am

I'm just a pedestrian here (first weeks of greek), but I feel less distressed and braver reading all y'all's experienced words of encouragement.
words are such a poor representation of reality. please listen to what I mean, not what I say.
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