Wheelock's Latin / Edition 6

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When Professor Frederic M. Wheelock's Latin first appeared in 1956, the reviews extolled its thoroughness, organization, and conciseness; at least one reviewer predicted that the book "might well become the standard text" for introducing students to elementary Latin. Now, five decades later, that prediction has certainly proved accurate.

The revised sixth edition of Wheelock's Latin has all the features that have made it the best-selling single-volume beginning Latin textbook, many of them improved and expanded: 40 chapters with grammatical explanations and readings based on ancient Roman authors, Self-tutorial exercises with an answer key for independent study, A newly enlarged English-Latin/Latin-English vocabulary, A rich selection of original Latin readings-unlike other textbooks, which contain primarily made-up Latin texts, Etymological aids.

Also included are maps of the Mediterranean, Italy, and the Aegean area, as well as numerous photographs illustrating aspects of classical culture, mythology, and historical and literary figures presented in the chapter readings.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Latin isn't really a dead language. It lives on in many professional and technical terms, and anyone who has tried to improve his or her vocabulary knows the value of Latin. This is the recognized standard text for learning Latin.
Anne H. Groton
Generations of students have learned Latin successfully from Wheelock's venerable text. LaFleur preserves the best features of the original book, while adapting it to meet twenty-first century demands.
Robert A. Kaster
This new edition makes a world of difference.
Cecil Wooten Hill
The sentences for translation have been tremendously improved. . . expansion of grammatical explanations and advice about how to study Latin [appear in] almost all the chapters.
James M. May
LaFleur has done a great service for the study of Latin: this revised edition ensures the survival of a textbook that has remained on the academic bestseller lists for more than forty years. The expanded grammatical explanations are particularly valuable for today's students and teachers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060783716
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/31/2005
  • Series: Wheelock's Latin Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 6
  • Pages: 560
  • Sales rank: 457,896
  • Lexile: 1190L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Frederic M. Wheelock (1902-1987) received the A.B., A.M., and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University. His long and distinguished teaching career included appointments at Haverford College, Harvard University, the College of the City of New York, Brooklyn College, Cazenovia Junior College (where he served as Dean), the Darrow School for Boys (New Lebanon, NY), the University of Toledo (from which he retired as full Professor in 1968), and a visiting professorship at Florida Presbyterian (now Eckert) College. He published a number of articles and reviews in the fields of textual criticism, palaeography, and the study of Latin; in addition to Wheelock's Latin (previously titled Latin: An Introductory Course Based on Ancient Authors), his books include Latin Literature: A Book of Readings and Quintilian as Educator (trans. H. E. Butler; introd. and notes by Prof. Wheelock). Professor Wheelock was a member of the American Classical League, the American Philological Association, and the Classical Association of the Atlantic States.

Richard A. LaFleur is Franklin Professor of Classics Emeritus and former Head of Classics at the University of Georgia; he has served as Editor of the Classical Outlook and President of the American Classical League, and is a recipient of the American Philological Association's national award for excellence in the teaching of Classics. Among his numerous books are Scribblers, Scvlptors, and Scribes and the revised editions of Wheelock's Latin, Workbook for Wheelock's Latin, and Wheelock's Latin Reader.

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Read an Excerpt

Why a new beginners' Latin book when so many are already available? The question may rightly be asked, and a justification is in order.

It is notorious that every year increasing numbers of students enter college without Latin; and consequently they have to begin the language in college, usually as an elective, if they are to have any Latin at all. Though some college beginners do manage to continue their study of Latin for two or three years, a surprising number have to be satisfied with only one year of the subject. Among these, three groups predominate: Romance language majors, English majors, and students who have been convinced of the cultural and the practical value of even a little Latin.Into the hands of such mature students (and many of them are actually Juniors and Seniors!) it is a pity and a lost opportunity to put textbooks which in pace and in thought are graded to high-school beginners. On the other hand, in the classical spirit of moderation, we should avoid the opposite extreme of a beginners' book so advanced and so severe that it is likely to break the spirit of even mature students in its attempt to cover practically everything in Latin.

Accordingly, the writer has striven to produce a beginners' book which is mature, humanistic, challenging, and instructive, and which, at the same time, is reasonable in its demands. Certainly it is not claimed that Latin can be made easy and effortless. However, the writer's experience with these chapters in mimeographed form over a number of years shows that Latin can be made interesting despite its difficulty; it can give pleasure and profit even to the first-year student and to the student who takes only oneyear; it can be so presented as to afford a sense of progress and literary accomplishment more nearly commensurate with that achieved, for instance, by the student of Romance languages. The goal, then, has been a book which provides both the roots and at least some literary fruits of a sound Latin experience for those who will have only one year of Latin in their entire educational career, and a book which at the same time provides adequate introduction and encouragement for those who plan to continue their studies in the field. The distinctive methods and devices employed in this book in order to attain this goal are here listed with commentary.

1. Sententiae Antiquae And Loci Antiqui

It can hardly be disputed that the most profitable and the most inspiring approach to ancient Latin is through original Latin sentences and passages derived from the ancient authors themselves. With this conviction the writer perused a number of likely ancient works, excerpting sentences and passages which could constitute material for the envisioned beginners' book. A prime desideratum was that the material be interesting per se and not chosen merely because it illustrated forms and syntax. These extensive excerpts provided a good cross section of Latin literature on which to base the choice of the forms, the syntax, and the vocabulary to be presented in the book. All the sentences which constitute the regular reading exercise in each chapter under the heading of Sententiae Antiquae are derived from this body of original Latin, as is demonstrated by the citing of the ancient author's name after each sentence. The same holds for the connected passages which appear both in the chapters and in the section entitled Loci Antiqui. Experience has shown that the work of the formal chapters can be covered in about three-quarters of an academic year, and that the remaining quarter can be had free and clear for the crowning experience of the year—the experience of reading additional real Latin passages from ancient authors, passages which cover a wide range of interesting topics such as love, biography, philosophy, religion, morality, friendship, philanthropy, games, laws of war, anecdotes, wit, satirical comment. These basic exercises, then, are derived from Latin literature; they are not "made" or "synthetic" Latin. In fact, by the nature of their content they constitute something of an introduction to Roman experience and thought; they are not mere inane collections of words put together simply to illustrate vocabulary, forms, and rules-though they are intended to do this too.

2. Vocabularies And Vocabulary Devices

Every chapter has a regular vocabulary list of new Latin words to be thoroughly learned. Each entry includes: the Latin word with one or more forms (e.g., with all principal parts, in the case of verbs); essential grammatical information (e.g., the gender of nouns, case governed by prepositions); English meanings (usually with the basic meaning first); and, in parentheses, representative English derivatives. The full vocabulary entry must be memorized for each item; in progressing from chapter to chapter, students will find it helpful to keep a running vocabulary list in their notebooks or a computer file, or to use vocabulary cards (with the Latin on one side, and the rest of the entry on the other). With an eye to the proverb repetito mater memoriae, words in the chapter vocabularies are generally repeated in the sentences and reading passages of the immediately following chapters, as well as elsewhere in the book.

In order to avoid overloading the regular chapter vocabularies, words that are less common in Latin generally or which occur infrequently (sometimes only once) in this book are glossed in parentheses following the Sententiae Antiquae and the reading passages. These glosses are generally less complete than the regular vocabulary entries and are even more abbreviated in the later chapters than in the earlier ones, but they should provide sufficient information for translating the text at hand; for words whose meanings can be easily deduced from English derivatives, the English is usually not provided. The instructor's requirements regarding these vocabulary items may vary, but in general students should be expected to have at least a "passive" mastery of the words, i.e., they should be able to recognize the words if encountered in a similar context, in a later chapter, for example, or on a test; full entries for most of these "recognition" items will also be found in the end Vocabulary.

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Table of Contents

Foreword ix
Preface xiii
The Revised Edition xxi
Introduction xxvii
The Position of the Latin Language in Linguistic History xxvii
A Brief Survey of Latin Literature xxxii
The Alphabet and Pronunciation xxxix
Maps xlv
1 Verbs; First and Second Conjugations: Present Infinitive, Indicative, and Imperative Active; Translating 1
2 Nouns and Cases; First Declension; Agreement of Adjectives; Syntax 9
3 Second Declension: Masculine Nouns and Adjectives; Apposition; Word Order 17
4 Second Declension Neuters; Adjectives; Present Indicative of Sum; Predicate Nouns and Adjectives; Substantive Adjectives 24
5 First and Second Conjugations: Future and Imperfect; Adjectives in -er 31
6 Sum: Future and Imperfect Indicative; Possum: Present, Future, and Imperfect Indicative; Complementary Infinitive 37
7 Third Declension Nouns 43
8 Third Conjugation: Present Infinitive, Present, Future, and Imperfect Indicative, Imperative 49
9 Demonstratives Hic, Ille, Iste; Special -ius Adjectives 55
10 Fourth Conjugation and -io Verbs of the Third 62
11 Personal Pronouns Ego, Tu, and Is; Demonstratives Is and Idem 67
12 Perfect Active System of All Verbs 75
13 Reflexive Pronouns and Possessives; Intensive Pronoun 82
14 I-Stem Nouns of the Third Declension; Ablatives of Means, Accompaniment, and Manner 89
15 Numerals; Genitive of the Whole; Genitive and Ablative with Cardinal Numerals; Ablative of Time 97
16 Third Declension Adjectives 104
17 The Relative Pronoun 110
18 First and Second Conjugations: Passive Voice of the Present System; Ablative of Agent 116
19 Perfect Passive System of All Verbs; Interrogative Pronouns and Adjectives 122
20 Fourth Declension; Ablatives of Place from Which and Separation 129
21 Third and Fourth Conjugations: Passive Voice of the Present System 135
22 Fifth Declension; Ablative of Place Where; Summary of Ablative Uses 141
23 Participles 147
24 Ablative Absolute; Passive Periphrastic; Dative of Agent 155
25 Infinitives; Indirect Statement 162
26 Comparison of Adjectives; Declension of Comparatives; Ablative of Comparison 171
27 Special and Irregular Comparison of Adjectives 179
28 Subjunctive Mood; Present Subjunctive; Jussive and Purpose Clauses 186
29 Imperfect Subjunctive; Present and Imperfect Subjunctive of Sum and Possum; Result Clauses 194
30 Perfect and Pluperfect Subjunctive; Indirect Questions; Sequence of Tenses 202
31 Cum Clauses; Fero 211
32 Formation and Comparison of Adverbs; Volo, Malo, Nolo; Proviso Clauses 219
33 Conditions 228
34 Deponent Verbs; Ablative with Special Deponents 234
35 Dative with Adjectives; Dative with Special Verbs; Dative with Compounds 245
36 Jussive Noun Clauses; Fio 253
37 Conjugation of Eo; Constructions of Place and Time 260
38 Relative Clauses of Characteristic; Dative of Reference; Supines 269
39 Gerund and Gerundive 276
40 -Ne, Num, and Nonne in Direct Questions; Fear Clauses; Genitive and Ablative of Description 284
Loci Antiqui 292
Loci Immutati 304
Optional Self-Tutorial Exercises 356
Key to Exercises 396
Appendix 435
Some Etymological Aids 435
Supplementary Syntax 442
Summary of Forms 446
English-Latin Vocabulary 461
Latin-English Vocabulary 470
Abbreviations 491
Index 495
Location of the Sententiae Antiquae 508
About the Authors 511
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Customer Reviews

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( 22 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 27, 2002

    Comphrensive and friendly

    This is my second time trying to learn Latin, and I'm having a much better time at it thanks to this edition of Wheelock's Latin (which is, by the way, the 'standard textbook' for Latin language courses). Latin isn't effortless or simple, but it's very rewarding! My only wish is that there was more midieval or ecclesiastical Latin in the lessons, but this text focuses almost exclusively on classical Latin, from ancient Rome. It's worth studying, especially for students of law, medicine, language, literature, history, politics, philosophy . . .

    11 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2005

    Still great in spite of LaFleur's changes

    I learned Latin with the previous edition and I now teach Latin out of this edition. This book is great, but LaFleur's changes have made it somewhat less so. If you're trying to learn Latin on your own, this book is probably your best bet. You don't need the corresponding workbook because the text includes all the exercises you'll need within the lessons as well as some supplementary ones at the end.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 23, 2012

    Nook version ruins a great textbook

    Buy this text in real paper form while you can. The Nook edition is a bad joke full of typos, especially in the Latin where they wreck the authority of the text. All the grammatical tables are unscalable images in unreadably tiny fonts. A disastrous failure in publishing.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 5, 2010

    Brushing up with Wheelock

    In high school, we always joked that my Latin teacher was old enough to have spoken it. I struggled through the second year, barely retaining enough to construct a meaningful sentence. Now faced with travel in Europe and spending a few days in France, I felt it time to learn a bit of the native tongue. While listening to the audio for basic French, I found that even after all these years the tiny bit of Latin I recalled came in handy. I was spurred to head to Barnes & Noble to find a book which would help me rediscover my scarce knowledge. After picking up several tomes, I found Wheelock's. I flipped through it and immediately liked his approach to the language. His brief but interesting history of languages in Europe, the influences of other cultures on Latin were particularly fascinating. Had this approach been taken in my high school years, perhaps my interest would have been much stronger. I am only in the first few pages but am very thrilled to have found this wonderful book. It is great to feel the author's enthusiasm for Latin and hopefully it will continue to rub off on me.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 17, 2002

    Wonderful material

    This book is well organized and very informative. I enjoy the fact that you start reading small passages in the first chapter.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2014

    Ya wanna know a derivative of os ( mouth) ?

    CheeriOS because they go in your MOUTH

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2014

    Learn latin press here

    Buy minimus in paper not nook kay

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2013

    Welcome to Stormclan

    Hello . Im Weatherbrook and i created Stormclan . A clan that follows the warrior code . A clan that is justiceful and the cats devide not the leader . We will vote for Leader deputy and med cat . Canidates have intill tommorrow . Voter can join and canidites cannot vote for themselves but voting resaults will be in a week . To join yes you have to vote . If you cant let me know and well figure something out . We welcone everycat . Just this time you have to vote so we get clear answers . Example vote . Canidites for leader Swanneck and Dinoball . I vote for Dinoball . Deputy Geyserheart and Gorgedrop . I vote for Geyserheart . Spotpack and Dogbush for med cat . I choose Spotpack . All cats must meet all requirements . Leaders but have full limbs and no disabiltys or powers. Older then 12 moons . Smart agile and witty selfless and are required . Deputy older then ten moons . Selfless careful and somewhat smart requried . Med cat somewhat smart . Loyal . Hope you join . Festus

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 19, 2013

    Help with latin

    I always wanted to speak a different language before.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2012

    Can i learn latin

    Vampygal send that fyi

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2012

    I wanna learn latin

    I wanna learn latin!

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2011

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    Posted October 19, 2009

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    Posted July 24, 2011

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    Posted May 19, 2010

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    Posted July 16, 2009

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    Posted August 23, 2011

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    Posted January 4, 2011

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    Posted October 25, 2013

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