Conversation Between Tallmo and FreelancePoliceman

2 Visitor Messages

  1. Hi, Tallmo. My interest leans slightly more to Greek, but you’re right; there is an enormous amount of literature in Latin. More of it survived than classical and Hellenistic Greek works, though of course the Greeks continued to write, and there’s plenty of Byzantine literature if you’re interested in that! And obviously Latin was the academic language of Europe until the twentieth century, which is great if you’re interested in anything academic or ecclesiastical. But yeah, it’s pretty cool to read, say, Julius Caesar’s account of the civil war from his own perspective.

    There are many benefits of learning ancient languages though, so go for it! Firstly, since they aren’t typically spoken anymore, you have to learn a very firm grasp of English grammar to understand what you’re reading — how can you translate a Latin participle or gerund when you have no idea what one is in English?? And then you learn history, of course; you can hardly avoid it! And this knowledge will give you a clearer view of the past, and of human nature: for all the cultural variances out there, people are pretty much the same everywhere you go. When you read the thoughts and feelings and hopes of people who lived 2,000 years ago in a vastly different culture, and realize that their experiences are universally relatable, your view of the world and of human nature really does become broadened. And, of course, in the case of Latin and Greek, it helps your vocabulary — when you see a new and unfamiliar English word (or even a word in other, Romance languages) you can often just figure it out from just your knowledge of those languages!
  2. Hi, Ok so you study Greek and Latin. Cool. Do you read a lot in Latin? Like just for fun? There must be an enormous literature in Latin. I've recently gotten more interested in ancient languages, it's something romantic and fascinating about them. I like that feeling of historical "depth" in the language, like something old and historical. A hint of a world long gone. I can basically read Old Norse quite well, so I could get into the Icelandic saga literature or pagan poetry with a little practice. I've never really had any use of it so far. Latin - I only know the basics, but enough to start reading very simple texts. These are just some things I've been thinking about recently so that's why I asked.
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