Pompeiian wall painting, 1st c. AD
Cave canem!

CL110 Elementary Latin
MW 10.10-11.05 TuTh 9.40-11.00

Prof. Michael Arnush Ladd 209 x5462
marnush@skidmore.edu Hours: W 9.00 Th 8.30 F 2.30

Web Resources
Classics Department
Skidmore College
If you find yourself struggling with any aspect of learning Latin - vocabulary, forms, syntax, sentences, etc. - you should consider consulting our Latin tutor, who will hold tutorial hours weekly. Just contact me and let me know you need some assistance.
The textbook by Moreland & Fleischer is divided into 18 units (or chapters). We will complete 10 or 11 units this semester, and so will devote approximately one week to each unit.

Our work in each unit will usually unfold in the same way:

Day In-class Topics Homework assignment
1 Introduction of new morphologies, grammatical concepts and vocabulary Morphology/vocabulary review w. LatinVocab & Flash; translation of phrases and simple sentences

Introduction of remaining grammatical concepts
n-class vocabulary quiz

Translation of more complex sentences
3 Review of translations
Literary and historical context
Translation of end-of-chapter passage (see table below)
4 Review of passage translation
Discussion of cultural material
Read following chapter

Roman civilization has been extinct for 1500 years, and so we tend to access it through academic, intellectual means and rarely via any life experiences. In this course, you will have the opportunity to have more direct experience with the life of ancient Romans. As you come to this course as a foreigner, an "other," so you will adopt the role of an "other" for this course - the role of a slave (servus-masc., serva-fem., servi-plural). As a servus or serva, you will see how the Roman world was perceived by outsiders drawn into Roman lifestyles, both through the language & literature, but as well by studying cultural issues in which the language and literature are/were embedded. The following table identifies the cultural topics that we will address for each chapter, keyed to the passage (left-hand column) at the end of each chapter. These cultural topics include religion, death, Rome' relationship to Greece, the tumultuous first century BCE, love, slavery, family, oratory and values.



M&F ch./psg. Literary context Historical context Activities for servi Electronic tools
Introduction: Roman Culture
1. Nauta/regina Bio. of Vergil Augustan age Receive names & biographies Images of Dido & Aeneas; mss.
Roman Religion
2. Dido/Aeneas Vergil Aen. 4 Roman religion Prayer and worship Images of temples, altars, gods
Roman Notions of Death
3. Aeneas ŕ Orcus Vergil Aen. 6 Sibyl and Cumae Foreign gods:Bacchus, Baal; syncretism Images of Pluto, Dis, Proserpina; d.m. inscrr.
Rome’s Debt to Greece
4. Trojan War Vergil Aen. 1 Bronze Age Troy Aeneas in Troy Images of Trojan War
Augustan Age
5. End of Aeneid Vergil Aen. 12 Pax Augustana Life in Rome Ara Pacis Augustae
Republic and Revolution
6. Cic. In Cat. 1 Career of Cicero Catilinarian revolt Slaves & rebellion: farm- vs. city-life Cicero webpage
Images of Cic/Cat
Roman Notions of Love
7. Martial/ Catullus Biographies of Martial & Catullus Patronage and poetry Expressions of love Graffiti
Slaves and Freedmen
8. Petr. Satyricon Trimalchio excerpts Lives of slaves & freedmen Manumission Manumission decrees
Roman Family: Marriage and Children
9. Pliny:Fundanus’ daughter Roman family readings Roman daily life Tombstone
Marriage contract
Tombstones; marriage contract
Roman Oratory
10.Seneca: clemency & tyranny Examples of declamationes Oratory in schools, etc. Orations Basilicas, abecedaria
Conclusion: Roman Values
11.Cic./Mart./Verg. Readings on pietas, fides, dignitas Proper roles for men & women, slave/free Values to a freedman/woman Sculpture & wall paintings

Under "Activities for Servi" are the topics you will write about briefly in Latin in an electronic bulletin board, the Forum. Over the course of the semester, you will create and maintain in the Forum a journal of the life of a slave. Your entries will include

  • sentences composed weekly by you as a slave on the chapter-cultural themes, drawing upon the morphological forms and vocabularies from the current and previous chapters
  • biographical data: original name and place of origin, slave name, details of homeland, new sights and sounds in Rome
  • daily life of a slave
    • work on the farms
    • work in the domus or villa
    • education
    • visits to the arena, circus, baths
    • dining

You will each maintain a thread in the Forum where all of your persona's material will reside. In addition, you will want to maintain a separate written journal of morphological forms (declensions and conjugations: paradigms and other like nouns, adjectives and verbs) and grammatical concepts that you can utilize weekly for study and review.