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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Learning Latin, 3rd Edition (Complete Idiot's Guide to) [Paperback]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   378
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 7" Height: 8.75"
Weight:   1.3 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 1, 2006
Publisher   Alpha
ISBN  159257534X  
EAN  9781592575343  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
An updated guide to the language of the Roman Empire.

Whether interested in learning Latin or just seeking a deeper understanding of English, readers will find a fun alternative to the standard dusty tomes usually associated with Latin. Included in this revised edition are updated vocabulary lists relevant to today's world, expanded pronunciation guides, Latin-to-English and English-to-Latin translations, and a workbook of exercises, reading passages, and tools for greater comprehension of the language.

* In 2002, the number of high school students taking Latin tests for college credit had risen 95% since 1993
* According to CNN, educators are increasingly turning toward Latin to improve student performance in reading, math, and science
* Perfect reference tool for law school, medical school, music school, and other graduate school students faced with getting through a Latin course as a requirement

Buy The Complete Idiot's Guide to Learning Latin, 3rd Edition (Complete Idiot's Guide to) by Natalie Harwood from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9781592575343 & 159257534X

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More About Natalie Harwood

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Harwood has a masters degree in secondary curriculum and has been teaching high school Latin, English and French for 40 years.

Natalie Harwood currently resides in Oxford, in the state of Ohio.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Hated It  Jul 23, 2008
I've been working off and on trying to teach myself Latin for several months now. I've used the "Teach Yourself" book, and "Wheelock." Each has its good points and its flaws. I then took this one out of the library, hoping it would clarify some of the more complex points.

I'm glad I didn't buy it.

Bluntly, it may have been written BY an idiot, but it's far from being a clear or simple method of learning Latin. (Even recognizing that NO language is 'simple', and Latin is more complex than some.) It starts with long lists of unrelated vocabulary words (related only by their declension) -- most of which are NOT the sort of words you're going to find in classic literature, or use on a daily basis. (Oyster? Caveman? Tightrope walker?) The 'English words' derived from latin that are intended to help the learner remember the Latin are usually so obscure that most readers will have never heard of them. You are introduced to all the noun declensions before you ever meet a verb. Which means of course, that you are simply memorizing words and phrases by rote for the first several chapters, rather than reading stories, or even full sentences. Practice exercises are minimal, and explanations inadequate.

This is THE most tedius way to learn a language, and all the cute humor and jokes that she throws in don't help matters a bit.

This one went back to the library.
Librus non finitus est  Mar 25, 2008
I'm not going to pretend to have finished this marvelous volume, but its first chapters have given me great hope that at long last I will be able to understand this wonderful language. What's great about this Complete Idiot's Guide (CIG) and what sets it apart from other Latin guides I have seen, is that it really does make an effort to explain the basics of Latin that have become the insuperable obstacles that have stopped my learning before it began. For instance, once a book of Latin starts talking about declensions (usually very early in the going) I get lost. CIG makes it clear that the first declension is a more-or less arbitrary collection of feminine words that end in "-a" and second declension words are usually male words end in "-o". CIG starts us off easy with other tidbits of the language -- that verbs often appear at the end of sentences (non dignus est) and that word endings (not articles and pronouns) define gender and tense. Pronunciation is introduced very early -- "V" pronounced as "W", and "C" having a hard sound like "K," etc. Before you know it, you are able to read simple sentences involving the nominative and genitive cases, such as "Senator non est elephatus" -- "The senator is not an elephant."

Then the fun begins as CIG throws readers into the shallow end of the pool, introducing Latin words that are familiar to English speakers and cleverly inserting other words that are less familiar. CIG intends us to learn the language as children do -- not through books and formal charts, but by experiencing words in a rather haphazard order -- familiar terms first, and specialized terms later.

Don't expect to breeze through "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Learning Latin" in a weekend or a month. The concepts, even when presented in a friendly way, are not easy. And you will need to memorize word endings and definitions, then practice pronunciations. Luckily, the book contains enough practice exercises (including fun words like "hippopotamus" and the aforementioned "elephantus") that are enjoyable. With this book firmly in hand, I look forward to the day when I can say (in regards to Latin) "Veni Vidi Vici" -- I *came* to the language, I *saw* it and I *conquered* it.
A needed update  Oct 13, 2006
For a "dead" language you may ask why an update on such a book is needed? The second edition had a promised section in the answer key for chapter one, which was missing. Such an omission can be a discouragement to a beginner in just about anything, particularly languages. I remember a guidebook to the Delphi programming language, from Sams Publishing, which had a mistake in the very first coding exercise.

Well done Ms Harwood. It's a great book, well set out and with plenty of humour in the "Complete Idiot's" tradition, whilst still not being over the top. The paradigms at the back of the book are useful and digestible.

Supplementary to any Latin course, including this book, I'd purchase vis-ed (see vis-eddotcom) flashcards. Their Latin flashcards are great. I don't work for the company, honestly, I live on the other side of the planet.

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