Begining Latin

lfial1180  2018-2019  Louvain-la-Neuve

Begining Latin
5 credits
30.0 h + 30.0 h
Meurant Alain;
Main themes
This course will deal with the following topics :
1. Nominal morphology : the 5 declensions of Latin nouns, as well as those for two classes of adjectives, the relative pronoun, the main demonstrative adjective pronouns and indefinite adjective pronouns ;
2. Verbal morphology : the 5 Latin conjugations, in addition to deponents and irregular verbs in all the tenses, moods and voices ;
3. The main syntactic structures in Latin ;
4. Translation of elementary level Latin texts ;
5. A basic vocabulary of around 800 words.

At the end of this learning unit, the student is able to :


By the end of this course, students will have acquired the essential concepts in the language (lexis, morphology and syntax), required to read Latin authors. They will be able to understand and translate simple texts. Students who take this course will afterwards be able to take a course in textual analysis.


The contribution of this Teaching Unit to the development and command of the skills and learning outcomes of the programme(s) can be accessed at the end of this sheet, in the section entitled “Programmes/courses offering this Teaching Unit”.
This course is designed for complete beginners whose knowledge of Latin is not enough to take the multi-purpose part of the course  Latin : language and texts  (LFIAL 1780 and 1781).
The gradual process of integrating concepts in morphology with Latin syntax, in addition to acquiring an efficient method for translation, is done by using texts based on two main topic areas : the early history of Rome and the legend of Theseus. There will be some additional material to complement these core texts. .
Teaching methods
This course has two interlinked, joint strands :
  • teaching of regular morphology (nominal and verbal) and the main structures in Latin ;
  • applying this theoretical teaching to a corpus of Latin phrases and a detailed examination of short extracts from classic authors.
A plan of the course is given out with further details at the beginning of the academic year.
This course involves :
1. lectures (30 hours) : theoretical and progressive presentation of the grammatical structures in Latin.
2. activities in small groups (practical) (30 hours) : analysis and translation of a  corpus of phrases and texts using appropriate tools. Computer-assisted learning programmes (Itinera electronica) provide students with interactive supervision. The groups will be carefully selected to ensure they are of a similar standard.
3. a significant amount of individual work (40 hours) : regular acquisition of different material, organisation of class notes and preparation required by the teaching team.
Evaluation methods
There is continuous assessment of this course : progress in acquiring the basic knowledge is checked through regular assessments (every 2 weeks). From the outset, these will be based on students' acquisition of basic lexis and morphology.  
As time goes on, they will include active comprehension of the language through the translation of phrases, moving on to simple texts.  
This assessment may be in written form, but may also be based on participation in the activities in the practical sessions (40 % of the assessment) ; it will be discussed at regular intervals by members of the teaching team. An overall written assessment (final synthesis) will be held at the end of the semester (60% of the assessment).
For the second registration,  written assessment  on the whole teaching.
Other information
  • A. MEURANT-A.-M. BOXUS, « Ad honorem per ardorem ». Manuel de latin à l'usage des grands débutants, Bruxelles, 20122, 272 p. (Langues et cultures anciennes, 18).
  • A. MEURANT-A.-M. BOXUS, « Ad honorem per ardorem ». Exercices de latin à l'usage des grands débutants, Bruxelles, 20122, 256 p. (Langues et cultures anciennes, 19).
  • M. LAVENCY-A.-M. BOXUS, Clavis. Grammaire latine pour la lecture des auteurs, Bruxelles, 20074, 254 p. (Collection Lavency).
  • C. MEYERSON-DETHOOR-G. SCHOUPPE, Manuel de vocabulaire et dictionnaire latin, Bruxelles, 19974, 236 p. (Collection Lavency).
Faculty or entity

Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Title of the programme
Bachelor in History

Bachelor in Ancient Languages and Literatures : Classics

Bachelor in History of Art and Archaeology : General

Bachelor in Ancient and Modern Languages and Literatures

Bachelor in religious studies

Bachelor in History of Art and Archaeology : Musicology

Bachelor in French and Romance Languages and Literatures : General

Minor in Medieval Studies