Ecce Romani

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Tuppence
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Ecce Romani

Post by Tuppence » Sun Feb 03, 2008 5:20 pm

Just interested to know if anyone started their Latin using the "Ecce Romani" series, and what they thought of them? I'm part-way through Book 1 at present.

Penny :)
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Hi

Post by Brent2009 » Sun Feb 03, 2008 5:28 pm

Hi there,
I happen to have used Ecce Romani in my latin classes at school, I'm currently about chapter 31 in book II. Personally, I dont care for it. Its kinda fun to read along with a story and learn tidbits of Roman culture while learning Latin, but if your interested in actually reading authentic latin texts, i would definately consider another book, BUT this book is pretty good at helping you understand the grammar used.

so, on a scale 1-10: I'd give it a 7.5 =]

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Post by Tuppence » Sun Feb 03, 2008 5:31 pm

Hello Brent. :)

I'm a complete beginner, at the age of 60. My American teacher uses it for beginners, going on to other things later. I believe her more advanced students are studying one of the classical authors.

What would you suggest for a beginner, or what did you find useful?

Penny
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vir litterarum
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Post by vir litterarum » Sun Feb 03, 2008 9:30 pm

I used Ecce Romani for the first two years of my Latin education in high school. I wouldn't say there are any glaring defects in it, but overall I think Wheelock is a better choice: albeit the passages in Ecce Romani are at times entertaining and informative, I still believe that introducing passages from actual Latin authors from the very beginning is preferable.

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Post by Tuppence » Mon Feb 04, 2008 8:30 am

I'll suggest "Wheelock" to my teacher. She did ask if there was any particular book I wanted to use. :) Thank you.

Penny
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Post by Chris Weimer » Mon Feb 04, 2008 2:25 pm

I'll second Wheelock's, though Ecce Romani wasn't terrible. I found it better than Latin for Americans. I hate tutoring students who use that book.

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Post by Tuppence » Mon Feb 04, 2008 4:33 pm

To following up the suggestion of using "Wheelocks", I did read some reports from previous users, who found it didn't explain grammar, endings, etc., clearly enough to use as a "self-teeching" book, and said a teacher would be needed when using it. They'd been quite confused by it.

Penny
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vir litterarum
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Post by vir litterarum » Mon Feb 04, 2008 5:39 pm

If you are teaching yourself, you are probably not going to want to use only one textbook anyway. It's better to learn the language from a variety of sources if you do not have a professor/teacher at your disposal. I would recommend using several textbooks in addition to a good reference grammar such as Bennett's or Allen & Greenough's. Wheelock's, however, contains better reading passages than Ecce Romani, so for that purpose I would stick to it as your primary source(most colleges and universities use it for 100-level Latin courses).

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Post by Tuppence » Mon Feb 04, 2008 6:49 pm

Thank you for your advice. I will get a copy of "Wheelock's".

Looking on Amazon UK, I see there is a "Wheelock's Latin" and a Wheelock's Latin Reader". Are they to be used together, or is the first enough to begin with?

Penny
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Post by Chris Weimer » Mon Feb 04, 2008 7:12 pm

It's enough to begin with.

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Post by Tuppence » Mon Feb 04, 2008 7:17 pm

OK. Thanks.
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Post by thesaurus » Mon Feb 04, 2008 8:41 pm

If you have the time, I'd recommend "38 Latin Stories" to accompany Wheelock. They are short Latin texts, including vocabulary, incrementally tailored to what you learn in Wheelock.

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Post by Tuppence » Mon Feb 04, 2008 8:52 pm

Thanks for the recommendation. :)

Penny
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Post by Brent2009 » Wed Feb 06, 2008 4:24 am

Sorry it took me so long to reply to this.
Like i said, Ecce Romani was totally terrible, but for other purposes, i found Wheelock to be very good and concise. Ecce Romani is good for halfway enjoying stories [the first 18 or so are rather dull "Flavia and Corenlia are Friends, they sit under a tree" type stuff and you really dont get out of the whole "see spot run" thing until much later. I mean, I with all being said, your better off with anything other than Ecce Romani. haha

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Post by Tuppence » Wed Feb 06, 2008 8:01 am

Thanks for your opinion, Brent. :)
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Post by Kyneto Valesio » Thu Feb 07, 2008 12:41 am

I have no opinion on Ecce Romani. But I am curious about remarks made by both Brent and Vir litterarum. Brent wrote,
but if your interested in actually reading authentic latin texts,
And Vir litterarum wrote something about "actual latin authors" or something like that. So who are the authentic and actual authors? What are the real latin texts? Isn't a "**** and Jane" book authentic English? What's not authentic about Ecce Romani? How about volume 1 of Lingua Latina? Is that somehow inauthentic ? Finally, how about ......

http://tinyurl.com/32pqkv

Best to all.

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Post by Kyneto Valesio » Thu Feb 07, 2008 12:47 am

that's funny I don't remember writing ***** in the name of the title of that classic children's book ...........hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm I mean "**** and Jane"

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Post by Brent2009 » Thu Feb 07, 2008 3:59 am

lol, well, im not sure how i am supposed to take that. but I'm that all things written in latin are not 'authentic" i meant "authentic" to the time of Ancient Rome's existence

Horace, Vergil, Caesar people of the past who WROTE in latin. Ecce Romani doesnt really touch much on vocabulary.

thats just more words you'll have to add to your vocab, my person reason for using that statement was to talk about wherehe was going with it, was it just for fun? did he plan to read prose, and literature? That sort of thing :P

Thats all I meant by it, was I wrong?

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Post by Kyneto Valesio » Thu Feb 07, 2008 10:15 am

Hi Bert! You wrote
i meant "authentic" to the time of Ancient Rome's existence
My intention is not polemical. I would like however to encourage you to have a more expansive view of what "authentic latin" is. Junya is studying medieval theologians. By your definition Thomas Aquinus is not a latin author. If not an authentic latin author, what then was he ? Here are some other names: Newton, Erasmus, Pascal, Sir Thomas Moore, Copernicus, Descartes, and many many others. Here is a link to a very amusing play from the renaissance:

http://www.philological.bham.ac.uk/forsett/

Personally, I think it is funnier than the Roman comedies of Terrence and Plautus which for some reason just don't strike me as very funny. Brent, I am not even touching the surface. The libraries of Europe are filled with books by latin authors that do not fill your definition.

There are some works in English that despite being written in very simplistic English are nevertheless considered works of literature. Similarly, simplistic works in latin from our own time can in theory rise to this standard .....of being of literary quality.

The question rises, who killed latin. In my opinion, the French "killed" it by foisting the lie that languages not spoken by anyone from birth are "dead" languages (sorry I don't have a reference). This just doesn't make sense! And the French only came out with this nonsensical assertion because they wanted French to supplant Latin as the universal language of the west. Then latin teachers helped kill it off by making latin tedious when they no longer taught students to speak latin.

A similar problem exists for sanskrit. No one has spoken classical sanskrit for 2000 years (I hope I am correct on this point) as a native language. Yet even up to the modern era works of great poetic beauty were produced in a supposedly dead language.

In any event, if you ever read the play in the link above, I think you will come to realize for yourself that the latin language used is real as real can be. And if you ever join the Grex, you may see that there are very excellent latin authors even today, writers who consider their chosen literary vehicle to be real and authentic. Thanks for your consideration of these thoughts!

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Post by Arvid » Thu Feb 07, 2008 5:11 pm

Kyneto Valesio wrote:A similar problem exists for sanskrit. No one has spoken classical sanskrit for 2000 years (I hope I am correct on this point) as a native language. Yet even up to the modern era works of great poetic beauty were produced in a supposedly dead language.
"Samskrta" means "finished, complete," (I think) and a lot of people would like to freeze Latin with a subset of Cicero's writings as being "finished." Of course, in English, the word "finished" has a double meaning, and I think this tendency is what has "finished" Latin as a vital part of our culture. If you have a command of Latin, and some readers who also have a command of Latin, then you have just as good (or just as poor) a chance of producing something of high literary quality as any user of any language anywhere. Unfortunately (or fortunately) this also means that the language will not stay frozen in the state it was in in the last days of the Republic.
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Post by Brent2009 » Thu Feb 07, 2008 10:47 pm

Yet again... Im not discrediting anyone as a'latin author'

I am just very interested in reading WORKS OF THE TIME OF Ancient Rome.

I can reword it however you like, but i still think you've got the wrong idea of what im trying to get across.

NO. I didnt say comtemporary peices or those after the Ancient world are not important, or less than remarkable. They are, and continue to be.

but to me, I'm more fond of seeing where it all began. What was culturally inspired and what was liked by the people.

anyway, I'm hoping this helps you understand my view.

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Post by Kyneto Valesio » Thu Feb 07, 2008 11:40 pm

That's fine, Brent. Perhaps I mistook your intent. Perhaps I just needed to vent. Hang in there! Ken

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Post by Kyneto Valesio » Fri Feb 08, 2008 12:05 am

Furthermore, having reviewed the thread, I see that although I started out stating that I did not wish to be polemical I immediately became rather polemical in arguing a particular point of view. Kindly overlook my misplaced zeal. Best.

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Post by Brent2009 » Fri Feb 08, 2008 3:51 am

Oh its fine, your points are very valid and where insightful, I think it was just a simple misunderstanding, mainly on my part, but thanks none the less. =]

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Post by Interaxus » Sat Feb 09, 2008 3:39 am

Tuppence:

Ecce Romani is fantastic, don’t believe anyone who says otherwise. In no time at all, you’ll find yourself reading WHOLE PAGES of Latin (what more can a beginner ask for?). Vocabulary is recycled like bubbles in a bottle of Coke. Start with Part 2, “Arrival at the Inn?, which is what I did.

The pace of storytelling is brisker than in Lingua Latina, which is weighted down much more by things like “Equus et asinus, leô et lupus, canis et ovis, bêstiae sunt? (The horse and the [word that the Asterisk Ex Machina of Textkit won't allow to be printed :oops: ], the lion and the wolf, the dog and the sheep are animals).

However, LL has retained its original simple layout over the years, whereas Ecce Romani has been successively disfigured by the obligatory new-edition face-lifts required by publishers.

As for Wheelock, use it as a reference by all means, but you won’t learn to read Latin from it.

Cheers,
Int

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Post by edonnelly » Sat Feb 09, 2008 1:50 pm

Kyneto Valesio wrote:So who are the authentic and actual authors? What are the real latin texts?
This question is an interesting one. I think that for a Latin work to be authentic, it must have two qualities:

1. The author is a native speaker or is fluent in the language [debating what fluent means can be put aside for a separate thread].

2. The intended audience of the work is also native speakers or fluent in the language.

I think a definition like this is useful, and probably pretty close to what most people think of when they talk about "authentic latin." It includes those works where Latin is being used as means of communication, but excludes works written solely for the purpose of teaching the language to those whose native language is something else. If we had an ancient Roman children's book, however, it would be considered "authentic," because its audience would be native speakers, even though it might have been written to help them learn their native language.

This idea is more me thinking out loud than it is any particular dogma that I would vehemently defend, but I do think there is a difference between an authentic Latin work and one where aspects of the grammar are artificially emphasized or excluded based upon which rules have or have not yet been taught.

Thoughts?
The lists:
G'Oogle and the Internet Pharrchive - 1100 or so free Latin and Greek books.
DownLOEBables - Free books from the Loeb Classical Library

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Post by adrianus » Sun Feb 10, 2008 8:24 pm

Personally, I really like your definition, Ed. However, does it have a weakness? Does it allow for an ancient Roman speaking in authentic Latin with anyone who was neither a native speaker nor wholly fluent in Latin (for example, an unprofessional foreign legate). Well yes, it does, because the speaker's intention is what matters in your definition, not the actual audience's ability. I really like your definition.

I qualify that a little, however, because I disagree with excluding works "written solely for the purpose of teaching the language to those whose native language is something else". Lingua Latina Per Se Illustra is to me authentic precisely because written "as if" for a Roman child. I would expand "intended audience" in your definition to "intended or theoretically potential".

Verò, Ed/Eduarde, definitio tua mihi valdè placet. Habetne autem unum vitium? Admittitne Romanum antiquum quocunque neque dictori latinae indigeno neque latinè adusque facundo genuinâ latinâ loquari posse (exempli gratiâ, legato barbaro et imperito)? Etiam, admittit. Quoniam de intentione auctoris agitur, et non de facultate ausculatoris vel lectoris. Definitio tua mihi valdè placet.

Me illud paulò temperare volo, quià non amo ut opera excludas "written solely for the purpose of teaching the language to those whose native language is something else". Librum Lingua Latina Per Se Illustra genuinum duco ut sicut pro puero Romano scriptum. Definitionem tuam ampliem ut "intended or theoretically potential" includatur.
Last edited by adrianus on Sun Feb 10, 2008 10:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by adrianus » Sun Feb 10, 2008 9:16 pm

Actually, I've changed my mind. Outside of historiographical concerns, I think talking about "authenticity" is a red herring and very loaded. It is preferable to judge a work on its own merits as good or bad, or useful or not, and argue about that.

Verò de sententiâ deductus sum. Nunc de authenticitate dicendum fallacem et movendum esse habeo (ultrà res historiographicas). Melius operis cuiusdam meritum judicare ut bonum vel malum, utile vel inutile, et sic disputare.

(Apud Robertum Ainsworth, "halec salita et fumo durata" = "red herring".) -- I meant to include "Ecce Romani" in the last post as an "authentic work" for the reason stated.

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Post by Kyneto Valesio » Mon Feb 11, 2008 1:06 am

Thanks to E Donnelly for his thoughts and to Adrianus as well. In my opinion, works that are purely pedagogical may have literary merit and thus be considered "authentic". I am very impressed by the editions of the Oxford Latin Course, the drawings as well as the embellished story of Horace's life. It is really very charming.

The various scholastic colloquia also come to mind. Traupman's efforts stem from this tradition but I don't think he is as amusing as Erasmus!

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Post by Brent2009 » Mon Feb 11, 2008 1:46 pm

Hmm... just curious, has anyone taken into consideration that maybe whats the best 'tutor' for latin is determined on a persons best inept ability for learning?


I'm very must what is known as a 'mastery' type learner, you tell me how to do it, I understand, I read how to do it, i understand. I do not need much more outside this box.

some are very interpersonal learners, they learn best through hands on, seeing it, visualizing it, etc.

some have to always ask why? HOW does this happen, WHY does this happen?

Maybe the best way to approach this is to see which way YOU learn best, and pick something appropriate thereof.

for example, My Latin II class is through a company known as KET and its their 'distance learning' program

and because of learning style, it works quite well for me.

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Re: Ecce Romani

Post by ThatLanguageGuy » Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:58 pm

What is the difference between the Ecce Romani III 4th edition and their 2nd and 3rd edition? Does anyone know?

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