Free Resources Explained

As you can see, I’ve added a new page with some free resources, so I wanted to take the time just to run through them and explain a bit about each of them, and why I’ve decided to put them up.

So the list of free resources I' have up are these (I’ll update this post if I add more):

  1. Latin by the Natural Method, books 1-3 (the complete series). These books were written as a way to teach Latin in context, not too dissimilarly from the Decoding Latin approach. It also encourages natural use of Latin, and its emphasis on learning through reading, along with its detailed explanation of different points is quite helpful for the self-learner.

  2. The Direct Method Applied to Latin, a book on a similar vein, but a older and with an emphasis on spoken Latin. W. H. D. Rouse, the author, was well-known in the early twentieth century for his rather revolutionary immersive approach, or the ‘direct method’, as it was known in his day. He developed a full syllabus for teaching Latin in schools by this method, and the book is a gold-mine. I’ve uploaded the first book (it was a two-year course, then followed by guided reading), but I’ve misplaced my copy of the second book, so that’ll have to wait….

    1. Hamiltonian Interlinear Translations. I’ve uploaded one for Aesop’s fables, and one for Cornelius Nepos’s Lives. James Hamilton was a huge influence on me, and quite a radical languages teacher for is time (1820s). Very much an entrepreneur, Hamilton got into a number of fights with teachers and institutions who rejected his approach, but it’s very effective. It involved reading interlinear translations, in which the translated word is directly beneath the original Latin word - very similar to the Decoding Latin approach. You can also find modern-day versions in this style here. UPDATE 9 August 2019: I’ve now added Hamilton’s Historiae Sacrae, Ovid, Sallust,and someone else’s interlinear version of Livy.

  3. Wilby’s Guide to Latin Conversation. An old book with tons of phrases, and a lot of dialogues towards the end of the book. Well worth looking into (also a great source of material for Goldlisting)

  4. Principia. A Latin textbook built on the direct method (see above), a useful resource for reading on one’s own if you’re not confident using real texts from the start (which you should)

  5. An Indictive Latin Primer. This is a great book! It takes you through Caesar’s Gallic Wars line by line, slowly building up til you’re reading quite a bit. It uses a similar approach to the Decoding Method, though it keeps up more grammatical explanations and more exercises than I do at the early stage.

  6. Palaestra. This is an incredibly comprehensive book, definitely recommended. It's goal is to teach you complete Latin, including Latin speaking. The author was an Hungarian count later become American, who used to say he was the ‘last native speaker of Latin’. Definitely recommend.

There you have it - go check them out, and I hope they help! YOu can also use the principles I’ve laid out in Decoding Latin: A User’s Guide to go through these materials. For example, if I were teaching myself from the ‘natual method’ books, I would just skim the grammatical explanations, and probably wouldn’t do the exercises (at least, not until I was well ahead of them). But up to you!

Just a short one today, but I hope this helps!