A-level Latin is a 2-year course which will build on your knowledge of the language from GCSE and enable you to read prose and verse texts at an advanced level. You will study the grammar and engage with genuine Latin texts to discover the peculiar ways individual Roman authors engaged with their language. We will study 2 texts in depth, one prose and one verse, analysing the literary style of the authors and examining the texts in their social, historical and cultural context to gain a deeper understanding of the lives of the Romans. There will also be opportunities to visit ancient sites in the UK to help bring the subject to life.
A good grade at GCSE Latin is required for this course.
We study advanced grammar and vocabulary to enhance your GCSE language abilities, preparing you to read unadapted Latin in the form of original prose and verse texts.
The set texts we study are Cicero’s Philippics (based on a series of speeches Cicero gave against Mark Antony), and the satirical verses of Horace.
All students are expected to take the AS exam in order to provide thorough preparation for the A2 examination series.
At AS, there is one language exam and one literature exam.
At A-level, there are two language exams, and two separate text exams for the prose and verse set texts.
Where does it lead?
Anywhere you want! Have you ever wondered why Harry Potter’s spells all sound like Latin? That’s because J.K. Rowling studied Classics at Exeter University, using her knowledge of Latin to formulate the language of magic in the Harry Potter books. Many actors, politicians and musicians also studied Latin before embarking on their careers.
A-level Latin can prepare you very well for an undergraduate degree in Latin or Classics. Universities also appreciate the non-language skills that a sophisticated language like Latin can give you. While few people actually speak Latin today, the ability to figure out complex Latin sentences is evidence of excellent analytical ability and problem-solving skills, while the study of Roman culture shows an ability to understand different civilisations and their customs. Excellent written communication is vital in almost every career you could imagine, and no subject will give you a greater understanding of the power of language than Latin.
We follow Taylor’s Latin Beyond GCSE to guide our study of Latin grammar, but a thorough knowledge and understanding of the language at GCSE level is essential. Taylor’s Essential Latin offers a succinct but thorough revision to all the key grammatical concepts, should you wish to refresh your skills before embarking on this course.