Georgetown Prep is closed today due to inclement weather. The Live the 4th Senior Retreat scheduled for today (January 27-28) will be rescheduled for dates TBA. However, the January 28-29, and January 29-30 retreats will go on as scheduled.
Prep upholds a proud tradition in the Classics; the department has faculty members prepared to offer a variety of courses in Latin. All students at Prep are required to take at least two years of Latin, courses usually completed during the student’s first two years of study. Additional courses after Latin II are chosen as electives.
This course is primarily devoted to the study of Latin grammar and syntax: students will learn all five noun declensions, all five verb conjugations, numerous grammatical constructions and the correct use of tense, voice, and mood. All the while students will translate sentences from Latin to English to prepare themselves for the reading that they will do in Latin II.
In Latin II, students reinforce their knowledge of grammar and syntax before beginning to dabble in Roman authors, to wit adapted mythology and doctored Caesar. This year exposes students both to the complexity of mythology and to the stylistic tropes of Julius Caesar, subtle tactician on both the battlefield and the papyrus.
Like Latin II, Latin III begins with a comprehensive review of grammar and syntax. Once all students are thoroughly reacquainted with the language, we begin reading selections of actual Latin texts, namely Cicero’s Pro Caelio (prose) for the first semester and selections of Catullus (poetry) for the second. By springtime we expect to be reading about ten lines per class meeting, a rate comparable to that of the beginning of Latin IV. All Latin III students will be encouraged to take the SAT II Latin subject test at the end of the year. Those students who excel in classroom performance and maintain an average of 90 or above will be invited to join the National Latin Honor society, whose members will take part in an induction ceremony and have the opportunity to tutor level Latin students at Prep. Finally, successful Latin III students are strongly encouraged to sign up for Latin IV.
After once again reviewing all Latin grammar and syntax (albeit at a pace far quicker than that of review in Latin III), we begin reading the AP selections from Virgil’s Aeneid. In order to finish all ca. 1900 of these lines we must eventually maintain a pace of about 15 lines per class meeting. Those students who have not maintained a 90 or above average for the first three quarters may be prevented from taking the AP test by the instructor. Students who became members of the National Honor Society will continue to meet at social society functions and tutor lower level Prep Latin students.
Students who have either advanced to Latin II as a freshman by passing the placement exam or who have been able to advance two levels by completing successfully one of Prep’s summer Latin programs may have the option of taking this course. As in Latin III and IV, the course begins with an intensive review of inflection and usage followed by a broad reading of prose and poetry ranging from the age of Livy and Virgil to that of Tacitus and Seneca.
Students will learn the rudimentary inflection, vocabulary, and syntax of Attic Greek. The segregation of forms and usage mimics that of Prep’s introductory Latin courses, and thereby reinforces Latin skills. All Greek-English sentences of each chapter in the textbook will be translated.