Learning Classics is a bit like putting on a magic pair of 3-D glasses. Once you start delving into the language and the culture, you'll start to see it all around you. This blog is a record of the club's journey through the worlds and language of ancient Rome and Greece... and through modern times, too, searching for the influence of classics all around us. You'll also be able to find vocab, home tasks, links and generally enlightening info here, too.

06 June 2015

Lesson 25 - Epic work...

Underline those verbs if it helps
Back to our old friends Felix, Caecilius and Clemens this week, and a heart-warming story of thwarted kid-napping. We're getting a little faster at unseen translation, but we'll get even faster if we always remember the golden rules, most importantly to ignore what your English-speaking brain is telling you. Don't go for the subject first. Find the VERB as it has loads of important clues about what is happening, when it's happening, who and how many people govern the verb. Parse the verb first, and then look for a subject (nominative) and then any object (accusative). Make a rough translation, then look for any other bits & bobs floating around (e.g. adverbials). Put them in, then polish up your translation. If you want to have another look at the translation, you can find an interactive version here.

Then a real treat. A twenty minute overview of The Iliad and why it's such an amazing piece of work.

1. It's very, very old and very, very long. Pretty impressive if you think that it was originally not written down but passed on through an oral tradition.

2. Some of the language is stunning, including the innovative use of similes and metaphors, setting images of war and peace in contrast to comment on the savagery (and futility?) of war.

3. It set the gold standard for both the war poetry and horror genres for the next few thousands of years.

4. It provided the inspiration for Troy, a film based on the Trojan War. Brad Pitt as Achilles - oh yes!

And, because we didn't have time to watch it in class, here's how the Trojan War ended (courtesy of Odysseus' brains, not Achilles' muscles)...
For your home task, start revising from that crib sheet you got in the lesson. The test date is 19th June.