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Why Study Latin?

In studying the Latin language, you will be not only be learning how to accurately decipher a complex and rewarding language, you will also be unlocking the key to analysing and engaging with some of the best examples of Western literature. Furthermore, while some might say ‘you can’t go around speaking Latin’, the reality is that it is really useful in developing your analytical and logic skills. It has a direct connection with music and maths, as it tests and stretches the same area of the brain. In fact, students who are very good at Latin tend to also be very good at Maths as both require the extensive application of rules. 

Natasha Crook
Head of Classics

About the Course

Latin offers a unique opportunity to engage with the ancient literature upon which modern society is established.

The values, society and history of the Roman world will be unlocked by translating authentic Roman authors and analysing the language, context and impact of their creation. You will study the vitriolic attack on Mark Antony, analysing the rhetoric of Cicero in his Philippics, a staunch defence of democracy and the Republican system. A more peaceful but no less interesting piece of literature looks at the myth of the love between the god Cupid, and the mortal Psyche and their struggle against the disapproval of the gods. Finally, you will study some of the of the most acclaimed literature of all time, exploring Virgil’s Aeneid Book 11 and Ovid’s Amores, some of the cleverest and most playful love poetry of Latin literature. This course is a delight to study and complements A-level or university study of another language, Maths, History, Law, Politics or English literature. It provides an opportunity to develop analytical skills and engage in textual criticism. Latin encourages mental versatility by engaging in a range of disciplines through the Latin sources that have retained their popularity for millennia.

Examination Board

OCR (H443)

Course Structure

  • Unit 1 Unseen Translation
  • Unit 2 Prose Comprehension
  • Unit 3 Prose Literature – Cicero, Philippics; Apuleius, Metamorphoses
  • Unit 4 Verse Literature – Virgil, Aeneid Book XI; Ovid, Amores II