Reading Latins - MT889

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2019-20
Canterbury Spring
View Timetable
7 30 (15)


Europe's lingua franca: an introduction to Latin





This module builds on the knowledge of Latin developed in the core module. Its intention is to develop that skill to a level expected of doctoral students in the first years of their programme. It does this by augmenting the knowledge of grammar and vocabulary. In the process, it refines your appreciation of the variety of Latin in time and place — medieval and early modern shared 'Latins' rather than one unchanging style of expression. The importance attached to Latin may seem alien from our own society and an element of this module is also to consider how one makes the riches of the post-classical language accessible to audiences beyond medievalists and early modernists for whom it is a sine qua non.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

Total contact hours: 33

Method of assessment

In-class presentation on a selected text (20%)
Exam (grammar and vocabulary), 2 hour (30%)
Public engagement project (10%)
Essay on a relevant topic or text, c. 3,000 words (40%)

Indicative reading

The study will centre on primary texts taken in part from readers — eg K. Sidwell, Reading Medieval Latin (Cambridge, 1995) — and editions, including, for instance, those in the I Tatti Renaissance Library.
Secondary reading will include:
F. A. C. Mantello and A. F. Rigg ed., Medieval Latin: an introduction and bibliographical guide (Washington DC, 1996)
E. R. Curtius, European Literature and the Latin Middle Ages [trans. from German] (London, 1953 and subsequent editions)
R. Ashdowne and C. White ed., Latin in Medieval Britain (Oxford, 2017)
C. Celenza, The Lost Italian Renaissance (Baltimore, 2007)
S. Tilg and S. Knight ed., The Oxford Handbook of Neo-Latin (Oxford, 2015)
V. Moul ed., A Guide to Neo-Latin Literature (Cambridge, 2017)

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

1. Demonstrate a level of competence in Latin as would be required from a student beginning a doctorate
2.. Demonstrate an advanced appreciation of the peculiarities of the various medieval and early modern styles of Latin
3. Show a nuanced understanding of the changing status of Latin texts in medieval and early modern Europe
4, Reflect on the challenges and the potential of making medieval and early modern Latin accessible to wider audiences

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