Full Course Descriptions Jan-Feb 2022

Mosaic featuring Ouranos standing in a gold zodiac wheel between two trees. On the earth Gaia reclines with four small figures

Fabulae Mythicae: Introductory Latin A

This course introduces students to the basics of reading Latin. We will begin with the geography of the world as the Romans understood it before moving on to reading short myths about the creation of the world and the first gods. We will use communicative approaches to Latin much of the time, often engaging in scaffolded conversations and listening activities. This course is for students of all ages who would like to begin learning Latin with engaging stories and an approach informed by research in second language acquisition from an experienced instructor. It is also ideal for students with some experience with Latin who would like to dip a toe into communicative Latin as well as those wanting a thorough review.

Tuesdays 7:00-8:00 PM EST

4 sessions beginning January 11, 2022 Cost: $100.00

A Latin manuscript on parchment. The end board visible around the margins of the page block is red with a gold decorative design on it.

Intermediate Extensive Reading: Historia Apollonii Regis Tyri

This course is for those who would like to practice reading extensively with an engaging, medium length prose narrative in straightforward accessible Latin. We will read roughly 1500 words per week of the Historia Apollonii Regis Tyri, a Late Antique Latin novella that underlies Shakespeare’s Pericles, Prince of Tyre. The story features extremes of good and bad parenting, mistaken identities, murder, false death, unexpected reunions, and riddles, We will read approximately 1500 words per week between classes and discuss the text in English and/or Latin. Lack of experience speaking Latin should not discourage anyone from signing up. Some content advisoryies are in order for this text. The story opens with an act of incestuous rape, which, despite launching the plot, is not mentioned in the story. There is also a death in childbirth and a short, non-explicit section of the novel set in a brothel. Anyone wanting to skip these sections is free to.

Tuesdays 8:30-9:30 PM EST

8 sessions beginning January 11, 2022 Cost: $200.00

A collage featuring an antique map of Egypt. At the to right, a bust of the Roman emperor Augustus is turned at a 90 degree angle and partially concealed by an Egyptian postage stamp featuring a stylized image of a bust of Nefertiti. At the bottom left a portrait sculpture of a Kushite Queen. has been superimposed over the map. To the right of this is a black and white photograph of Kushite pyramids against the sky with numerous people on camels in the foreground.

Extensive Reading: The Aethiopica books 1-5

This is an ambitious reading course for those wanting to improve their Latin through extensive reading of a long (approximately 25000 words) Latin text. In part 1 of the course we will read books 1-5 of the1590 Latin epitome by Martinus Crusius of Heliodorus’ novel Aethiopica. Most of the reading will be done outside of class and class time will be devoted to discussing the text in Latin and/or English. A Lack of experience speaking Latin should not discourage anyone from signing up. In part 2 we will read books 6-10. The Aethiopica is a sprawling novel with an intriguing narrative structure. In the opening scene, bandits at the mouth of the Canopic branch of the Nile Delta come across the remains of a banquet that turned into a massacre. Among the dead and dying are a beautiful young woman, armed for battle and holding a gravely wounded (and equally beautiful) young man. They speak but the bandits do not understand their language. We, as readers, have barely more information than the bandits do. Who they are and how they have come to be in this situation are revealed gradually through a series of inset tales told by narrators of varying reliability, letters in scripts not all the characters can read, which we only learn at the end of book 5. While the main timeline of the story in books 1-5 takes place in Persian-ruled Egypt, the inset narratives and backstories take the reader to Athens, Delphi, and Nubia. Although the ethnographical details of non-Greek peoples are unreliable, the novel demonstrated how connected the Greek-speaking world was to cultures far beyond the mediterranean basin and that there was complex and extensive connection between those cultures as well.

Thursdays 7:00-8:00 PM EST

8 sessions beginning January 13, 2022 Cost: $200.00

An acetate transfer enhanced by inked lines of a medieval illumination. In the image five men are in a sail boat on top of an enormous fish while another man adds fuel to a fire built on the fishes back. Next to the fire are two flowering plants. Underneath the image is inscribed "Qui habet nomen Jasconius" (which has the name Jasconius), describing the fish.

Intermediate Readings in Late Antique and Medieval Latin

In this class we will look at several Latin texts that reflect the dynamic relationship of the polytheist Roman past (from Late Antiquity to the “High” Middle Ages) to Christianity as the latter evolved from merely-tolerated to the majority religion in Latin speaking Europe. Where appropriate we will spend some time looking at the rules of poetic meter and practice reading metrically. Discussion may take place in English or Latin, but a lack of experience speaking Latin should not deter anyone from signing up!

The Song of the Sibyl
The Seven Sleepers of Ephesus from Legenda Aurea
excerpts from Mirabilia Urbis Romae, a medieval guidebook to Rome
The Conflictus Veris and Hiemis (formerly atributed to Alcuin of York)
a selection of secular (“Goliard”) poetry
the Confession of the Archpoet

Thursdays 8:30-9:30 PM EST

8 sessions beginning January 13, 2022 Cost: $200.00

An etched print of the titan Saturn devouring one of his children in a niche on whose wall his scythe is resting. Captioned in Italian "In Roma 1771 a Spose di Carlo Losi" and in Latin "Divorum Genitor Summi Saturnus Olympi" ("Saturn, progenitor of the gods of highest Olympus")

Fabulae Mythicae: Introductory Latin B

In this follow-up to Fabulae Mythicae A, we continue to build reading skill in Latin through an introduction to the Olympian gods. We will continue to employ communicative approaches, engaging in scaffolded conversations and listening activities. For students who have completed the A course and would like to continue or for those who feel comfortable with the very basics of Latin (drop a line on the contact page if you would like more information).

Tuesdays 7:00-8:00 PM EST

4 sessions beginning February 8, 2022 Cost: $100.00

Classes will meet on Zoom. All materials will be provided unless specified in the course description. Additional materials may be recommended, but not required. Coursework is ungraded. You will need a good internet connection, a microphone, a quiet place from which to join class, and possibly headphones. If you miss a class, please let me know so I can point you to any activities that might help you catch up on material you missed. In certain cases, such as observance of a religious holiday or family emergency, I will be able to schedule a make-up session.


Up to 2 days before the start of the class: 100% (minus any fees incurred through payment platforms)

After 2 days before the start of the course: Credit to use on another course at Piscina Mirabilis

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