Scanning Aloud

Allen and Greenough offer this tip for learning the rhythm of Latin poetry:

“‘Scanning aloud’ is sometimes useful in the early stages of the study of Latin meter. Scanning aloud ignores the natural stress of the Latin words, instead treating all long syllables as stressed, all short syllables as unstressed. In effect, this technique replaces a quantitative pattern with a stress pattern.” -§607n1

  • If they mean what I believe they mean, I don’t see where this would be effective
  • Personally, I found that learning Latin verse based on the stress of its meter, not its syllables, works well
  • Would a spondee be read with double stress in this method? What would that accomplish?

Here’s an earlier post I did on a site with some sample readings aloud.

Does anyone else have experience with / thoughts on how to read Greek and Latin aloud, and how to use this as a teaching tool?

I had the fortune of reading about 50 lines of Greek and 40 lines of Latin in front of the kids at the Center for Talented Youth this summer. They were very taken with it. This was during a camp talent show with a Harry Potter theme, so, to preface, I told them that Greek was the language of Hufflepuff (with all its aspirates), and Latin the language of Slytherin (which was at least true of Aeneid 6.1-41, the highly sibilant passage I read them).

The Essential AG: 607 n1

Latin for Addicts at 50+ Posts

This is my 55th post on the blog, and I’d like to pause for a moment to express (discuss) where it’s taken me.


The blog was designed as a learning-teaching tool for use with the students I would aid as a Teaching Assistant this summer in the Latin course at the Center of Talented Youth. Unfortunately, I had a sample of academic disappointment when I discovered that CTY demanded that I as return as a member of ResLife, and that they have given the position of TA to (naturally) a graduate student.

I carried forward with the project, for my own benefit, and saw certain results. To begin, the blog has become something of a diagnostic for my own personal ‘loose ends’ in Latin grammar. To that cause, it bears great aid. I’ve been studying Latin for less than two years (Greek for about four), and I’m already more confident about Latin grammar than I am about Greek.


My recent adventure, with Dative Verbs, suggests I should stray from ‘large projects’ in the future. Because of this project, I’ve been less than enthusiastic about the blog for the past two weeks or so, despite a recent surge in readership (thanks in whole to the Rogue Classicist).

Like most bloggers, I like to tinker with little thoughts. Mine happen to demand that I improve my precision with Latin grammar. I hope you’re pulling something ripe from this blog. I know I am.


I’ve been withholding humor from the blog, because (to being with) it was designed for young learners. Look for that to change.

Posting frequency will likely dip or for about a month. I am currently employed with the Center for Talented Youth as a Resident Assistant: a position which offers very little free time.


As a side project for this summer, I’m preparing material for graduate applications in the fall. I’m a rising fourth-year undergraduate, interested in ancient philosophy, with a particular zeal for Plato, his literature, and his reception. If anyone has some (clever/uncommon) advice, I’m all ears.