Spoken Latin via Skype

MagisterT

New Member
Just wondering if anyone has seen this on youtube. It's a guy from Italy named Robertus Carfagni teaching a young kid from Georgia how to speak Latin fluently via Google Hangouts. Totally amazing. He uses the Orberg texts: Lingua Latin per se illustrata and Roma Aeterna. Having read the majority of the chapters of these books, I was able to follow the conversation with some ease. It's a real eye opener for anyone interested in learning by speaking. I want to take lessons with Robertus, but it ain't cheap, unfortunately.
 

MagisterT

New Member
Learn by speaking.

Or are you asking me if I want to talk with you via Skype?
 

Laurentius

Man of Culture
I thought it was the sense of this thread, but maybe I didn't understand.
 

MagisterT

New Member
I'm saying that learning Latin by speaking it seems to me more and more to be the fastest way to achieve total fluency, as evidenced in this series of youtube vids. Take a look sometime.
 

Aurifex

Aedilis
Staff member
I'm saying that learning Latin by speaking it seems to me more and more to be the fastest way to achieve total fluency, as evidenced in this series of youtube vids.
It's impossible to achieve fluency in a language that has no native speakers.
 

MagisterT

New Member
It's impossible to achieve fluency in a language that has no native speakers.
Well, that's the interesting thing. There are more and more "native" speakers thanks to places like this. And people like this. And websites like this one maybe. I'm new here, so I haven't seen a lot of the streams yet. I'm not saying I anticipate a return of Latin as a spoken language on a large scale. I'm really just saying that it seems most effective to learn by speaking - the way we learned our native languages. Does this make no sense?
 

Aurifex

Aedilis
Staff member
I would never want to discourage anyone from learning Latin, however they choose to go about it, but perhaps the following will help you to understand the point I'm making.
If you were learning a modern language and you'd never heard a native speaker yourself, and the only exposure you had to it as a spoken language was with persons who'd never heard a native speaker either, and the pronunciation, choice of vocabulary, and use of syntax and idiom among these persons was drawn entirely from what they had managed to gather from written texts in that language and from other persons' interpretations of those written texts, would you expect, if you suddenly paid a visit to the country where the language you are learning is spoken natively, to perform and be regarded as a fluent speaker of that language?
 

Matthaeus

Vemortuicida strenuus
There were obviously thousands of fluent speakers in the mediaeval period and beyond. How would you describe that situation then, Aurifex?
 

Nikolaos

schmikolaos
Staff member
It would seem that Aurifex's argument is that unless, say, Cicero himself would have called you "fluent", then you are not truly fluent. I imagine that the best of us would probably sound stiff and bookish with regards to grammar and vocabulary to an actual native speaker, and that our accent would be difficult for the Roman ear to comprehend and their speech would be almost impenetrable to us. At first, anyway.
 

Symposion

Member
I do not need to be able to talk in Latin but be able to pronounce it and produce Latin text. Do you really need to actually talk in Latin?
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
No. If you don't feel like it there's no need.
 
The Israelites managed to revive Hebrew did they not?
I am of the opinion that there might well be value in converſational Latin as a learning tool. I would imagine in any caſe that Cicero, as new arrival in the Elyſian fields, would have found ſome degree of difficulty in converſing with Numa Pompillius.:)
 

Lucius Aelius

Linguistics Hippie
I do not need to be able to talk in Latin but be able to pronounce it and produce Latin text. Do you really need to actually talk in Latin?
One can just as easily say that there's no need to learn any amount of Latin at all in the first place. And yet here we all are.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I suppose it all depends on the definition of "fluent"...
 

Matthaeus

Vemortuicida strenuus
Well, I'm pretty sure he was the most fluent Latinist of the entire Renaissance, if not of all modern times.
 
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