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Unit information: Latin Language Level B1 in 2015/16

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Unit name Latin Language Level B1
Unit code CLASM0034
Credit points 20
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Professor. Shane Butler
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of Classics & Ancient History
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

The aim of this unit is to develop and reinforce students' skills in the independent critical reading of Latin literary texts. In the unit, you will read selections from Cicero’s Letters (covering 600 lines in Latin and the remainder in English translation). Grammatical and syntactical knowledge of Latin will be revised and reinforced. You will also develop a range of key skills for the reading and literary analysis of Latin texts.


To develop students’ knowledge of the Latin language through the reading of classical Latin prose; to introduce students to techniques of independent reading of Latin, such as use of dictionaries and commentaries; to introduce students to issues of translation and interpretation of Latin literature.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Students will have developed and consolidated their knowledge of the Latin language and will have developed their skills of advanced independent reading of Latin texts. They will have acquired knowledge in the use of dictionaries and commentaries, and will be able to relate this knowledge to their understanding and interpretation of a Latin text. In addition, second year students will be expected to have developed more sophisticated analytical skills, as demonstrated in their formal assessments and in their participation in seminar discussions.

Teaching Information


Assessment Information

Methods of Assessment:

Mode of assessment for First, Second, Third years and MAs will be as follows:

  • 1 assessment exercise in practical criticism on a chosen piece of text 35-40 lines in length, with guidance questions from unit director. 1,500 words. Weighted at 50%.
  • 1 class test (45 minutes) on grammatical/syntactical knowledge, on two pieces of text amounting to a total of 15 lines in length (50% of test mark each). Use of dictionary will be allowed in this test. Weighted at 25%.
  • 1 class test (45 minutes) on prepared text translation (10-12 lines, 40% of test mark) and context/interpretation knowledge (60% of test mark), with guidance questions from unit director, on one piece of text 20 lines in length. No reference texts will be allowed in this test. Weighted at 25%.

Reading and References

Every student must own the following books:

  • C.T. Lewis Elementary Latin Dictionary, Oxford University Press
  • Kennedy's Revised Latin Primer, Longman
  • Peter E. Knox Ovid, Heroides: Select Epistles, Cambridge University Press 1995

To be read in Latin:

  • Selections of Heroides (600 lines: exact selections to be confirmed at the start of the unit).
  • Student should also read all of the Heroides in English.