What is "fake latin"?

Hello,

When looking for recommendations about various manuals on this forum, I came across several postings criticizing the "fake latin" that many textbooks use as illustrative texts.

I'm guessing that so-called fake latin refers to the latin used by contemporary textbook authors as opposed to authentic period authors.

But what I wonder is, how different are those kinds of latin? do texts written by contemporary teachers really leap out at you as sounding un-latin, "fake latin"? If so, what is it tha makes them sound so different?

Thanks.
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
But what I wonder is, how different are those kinds of latin? do texts written by contemporary teachers really leap out at you as sounding un-latin, "fake latin"? If so, what is it tha makes them sound so different?
Textbook-Latin is no more and no less unnatural than any other source you find in contemporary textbooks of any language ... which I'm basically fine with as long as the texts stay clear of grammatical errors ... Most textbook authors seem to be able to do that, though :p

It's probably not the language spoken in the streets every day ... but as I said, as long as it's grammatically correct, I'm fine with that.
 
Textbook-Latin is no more and no less unnatural than any other source you find in contemporary textbooks of any language ... which I'm basically fine with as long as the texts stay clear of grammatical errors ... Most textbook authors seem to be able to do that, though :p

It's probably not the language spoken in the streets every day ... but as I said, as long as it's grammatically correct, I'm fine with that.
I didn't really check whether the phrase "fake latin" came from just one person or several on this forum, but it did come up quite often, especially on the LLPSI and Athenaze-related topics. The person(s*) was/were describing such texts as a complete waste of time. So I was really curious to know why.

On another forum I read almost the same notion from a latin teacher, who kept talking about "fabricated latin".
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
I don't know, I haven't read LLPSI ... but from what I've heard (and from the few excerpts I have read) I wouldn't think it's the worst Latin ever produced. Feel free to link to concrete evidence of people on this forum criticising LLPSI.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
The LLPSI method has been criticized on this forum (I myself am skeptical of it) but I don't know if the Latin itself has been. It could be that the author went wrong or used a questionable construction at some point, but from what I've personally read of it, I would say it's written in very good and, as far as possible in a textbook, natural Latin. Of course, the more basic texts aren't exactly "natural", since they're highly simplified, but, as Bitmap said, that's what's done in beginners' textbooks in all languages, and it's a perfectly normal thing — you must start by learning the simple things.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Now, regarding textbook Latin in general, you can of course find various quality levels. Some textbooks will have big mistakes; others won't have big mistakes but will have rather unidiomatic/unnatural things; others will be rather natural (as far as the necessary simplification in the earlier stages allows).

As for what "fake Latin" means, I guess it means different things to different people. For me, I think it would mean either incorrect or unidiomatic Latin. But it's true that the ultimate authorities should be Roman authors, not textbook writers.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Callaina, for example. There must have been others but I don't remember who.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I would say "fake Latin" is just a loose term for any wrong, unidiomatic, or unnatural Latin, but different people may have slightly different opinions of what constitutes this. You probably shouldn't overthink it or try to get a precise scientific definition of the phrase. :p
 
I would say "fake Latin" is just a loose term for any wrong, unidiomatic, or unnatural Latin, but different people may have slightly different opinions of what constitutes this. You probably shouldn't overthink it or try to get a precise scientific definition of the phrase. :p
Oh ok so it's basically another word for bad latin, then.

I was starting to wonder if anything not written by a classical author could automatically be considered "fake latin", as one of the authors in the links I posted (who seems quite proficient) seemed to imply, i.e. if, no matter how long you study latin, you will never truly be able to write something undistinguishable from the kind of latin you find in classical works.
 

Issacus Divus

ᛋᚢᚾᚢ ᚱᛖᛟᚱᛞᚲᚤᚾᛁᚾᚷᚨᛋ
So in turn...everything that an extremist writes latine is a joke.
 
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