mbaker at rapp.com
Wed Oct 23 13:10:00 PDT 1996
If I may offer a variation to Gunnora's excellent advice concerning the
learning of Latin, I would note two or three items.
First, for a reading acquaintance with Latin it helps immensely if one first
learns the ROOT-level meanings of English-language words which have derived
from any of the "Romance" (i.e. Latin-derivative) languages. (I've been
tested at 40%-plus reading comprehension of French, Italian, and Portugese
based upon my English vocabulary...) Comprehension by this method is
reduced for colloquialisms, but even there a little common sense -- and
awareness of context -- help immensely.
Second, when haunting the used-book stores, keep your eyes out for high
school Latin textbooks published pre-WW II. I have a knowledge of
self-taught Latin using a text that my great-aunt acquired in 1918...
Thirdly, it sometimes helps to have a choral background as well -- many of
the Latin songs include both English lyrics and translations.
Fourthly, learn heraldic terminology. Hey, yet another benefit of
associating with the SCA at more depth than the "costumed party" level!
As in learning many languages, learning at least a basic level of Latin *is*
easier when you know your own native (European) language at a deeper level.
Conversely, learning Latin will also increase your comprehension of English.
A genuine positive feedback loop!
Amr ibn Majid al-Bakri al-Amra
Mike C. Baker mbaker at rapp.com
Any opinions expressed are obviously my own unless explicitly stated
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