Hans Henning Ørberg

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How to learn Latin: ‘unum facere et aliud non omittere’ (pars altera)


[This is the second part of the article; the first part can be read here.] The purpose of such a study is not—and I say this again so as not to be misunderstood—to go shopping in Latin or to use Latin as a living language, as one might English (which many people learn in order to take a plane or book a hotel, and not to read Shakespeare), but to reclaim for Latin its nature as a language, as described above, which has been denied to it for so long in favour of a written approach to language [...]

How to learn Latin: ‘unum facere et aliud non omittere’ (pars altera)2023-12-03T19:47:20+01:00

How to learn Latin: ‘unum facere et aliud non omittere’ (pars prior)


If we were to ask students and teachers the question, “What is Latin?” we would hear a multitude of adjectives related to the word: alive or (almost always) dead; useful or (mostly) useless; beautiful and ugly; ancient; interesting; boring; hard; not to mention Catholic; classist; Fascist. These are only a few adjectives, but they demonstrate how hard it is to provide a firm and impartial definition of what Latin is. Moreover, any attempt to choose an appropriate adjective often draws attention away from the main point—the quid, as Cicero would say—, namely the subject itself: Latin. In short, [...]

How to learn Latin: ‘unum facere et aliud non omittere’ (pars prior)2023-12-03T19:48:16+01:00

Hans Henning Ørberg


A century ago Hans Henning Ørberg, the well-known Danish teacher and scholar, was born. His textbook, Lingua Latina per se illustrata, has made Latin accessible to many tens of thousands of young people, and has been used by many successive generations of students and other learners. From the 1950s to the last days of his life he tirelessly worked to improve Lingua Latina, both by writing some ancillary books and devising other teaching aids, and by reviewing and polishing the two volumes with the care and diligence of a monk. Today, on the anniversary of his birth, we present you an interview [...]

Hans Henning Ørberg2023-12-03T19:51:07+01:00
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