A Beginner-to-Intermediate Latin Exercise Book (in the Works)

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I'm writing a beginner-to-intermediate Latin exercise book (possibly to be followed by an intermediate-to-advanced one, but don't expect this too soon since, obviously, the beginner-to-intermediate one will already take some time to complete). This is not a grammar book or a textbook, but a book with lots of exercises to complement any textbook or course you're using. When learning a language, I've sometimes felt like I wasn't being given enough exercises, so I figured I probably wasn't the only one and such a Latin exercise book would find an audience.

While I'm in the process of composing the book, every now and then I'll be sharing a free excerpt (one exercise + answer key) on my Facebook page, so follow it if you're interested. I've already shared two, rather basic ones since I'm still at the beginning of the book, more on the "beginner" than on the "intermediate" side. Dear beginners on LatinD, have a go at them!
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
So, after deliberating, I've decided the book will probably be called simply "A Latin Exercise Book", without the words "Beginner-to-Intermediate". That is because it will include some stuff that some people, it turns out, would consider more "advanced" than "intermediate". "Beginner", "intermediate" and "advanced" are such subjective terms that it's probably best to remove them from the title since, as they mean different things to different people, they're likely to mislead some, if not a good number of, potential readers, rather than give them a fair idea of the content as I initially intended.
 

Terry S.

Quaestor
Staff member
Will there still be two volumes? This is the kind of thing that I would have loved as a total beginner. Just now I'm doing a thorough refresher course from scratch using the copious exercises of 'Learn to Read Latin'. I look forward to working through your book as well when it becomes available!
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Will there still be two volumes?
I don't know yet.
This is the kind of thing that I would have loved as a total beginner.
Me too. That's why I thought others might.
I look forward to working through your book as well when it becomes available!
Thank you. Part of the book really is total beginners' stuff, and probably won't be useful to you. But stuff a little bit further in might be of interest. I can't affirm anything since I don't really know what level you're at, but it's quite possible. If you want to get an idea before you buy you can keep an eye on the excerpts I share on FB.
 

Big Horn

Active Member
I hope that you will provide plenty of material on conditions in indirect discourse. Do you plan to do this? Whom do you prefer as a model? I'd pick Cicero.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I hope that you will provide plenty of material on conditions in indirect discourse.
I've been hesitating. That's rather advanced stuff, but now that I've gotten rid of the "beginner-to-intermediate" label I guess I could go for it.
Whom do you prefer as a model? I'd pick Cicero.
I don't really have any favorite. Cicero's very good, of course, but I'm not a hardcore Ciceronianist in that if something was good enough for Livy, Tacitus or Suetonius, say, it's good enough for me.
 

Ybytyruna

Civis Illustris
Optime quidem facis!

Spero fore ut mox foras detur. Macte diligentia eſto!
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Gratias tibi. Certe aliquot menses in opere consumendi sunt.
 

Godmy

Sīmia Illustris
Cool! Good luck!

Is it translation based? (like a composition exercise book) I sometimes think of fitting "trick"/educative questions for Latin learners, for example you could use this as well:

Translate: Which hand do you prefer?
Utram manum mavīs?

^ the "trick" here was the usage of uter, tra, trum. In my experience, unless the original sentence gives more clues, like when it words the two options "left or right?" or words it outright intuitively "which of the two", the Latinist usually falls for it and will use "quī, quae, quod" <- not like it's wrong, but it's suboptimal, when we've got the working remnant of some dual, right :p)

Anyway, sorry for abducting the thread. But you can use that example in your book in any case!
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Is it translation based?
Yes, mostly, though there are also some other exercises like picking the right words out of parentheses or the right form of a lemma to complete a sentence, answering some questions, identifying mistakes in deliberately wrong sentences, and also a few reading sections from actual literature with helping notes.
I sometimes think of fitting "trick"/educative questions for Latin learners
Yes, I do that every once in a while. Not too often so as not to depress students, but those types of questions are very useful for making a point, and hopefully making it stick in students' minds.
Translate: Which hand do you prefer?
I haven't introduced that word yet, but it is in my plans to do so at some point.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I hope that you will provide plenty of material on conditions in indirect discourse.
I've been hesitating. That's rather advanced stuff, but now that I've gotten rid of the "beginner-to-intermediate" label I guess I could go for it.
I will include one or two chapters on that (well, on subordinate clauses in indirect speech in general, including but not limited to conditionals).
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Here is one of the sentences on subordinate clauses in indirect speech, if someone wants to try it (yes, it is relatively advanced stuff):

  • The general told the ambassadors that if the hostages had not been returned on the next day, he would not spare the king’s wife and children.
  • Imperātor lēgātīs dīxit sē, nisi obsidēs postrīdiē redditī essent, uxōrī līberīsque rēgis nōn parsūrum.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I've finished writing the book. That is, the first draft is done, but now I must go over it all again at least a couple of times and revise, fix the typos that are sure to be there, improve various things that I'm sure to notice could be done better, etc. I feel daunted and anxious.
 
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