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Course Description

Academic Year 2024-2025 • Grade 9 and above • Latin Sequence

Latin IV (Caesar and Vergil)

This course lets students confront continuous Latin writings in their original form — extensive prose passages from Caesar’s stirring (and sometimes disturbing) De Bello Gallico and the unsurpassed poetry of Vergil’s Aeneid. We deal with the technical issues of the Latin language, but also with its subtler nuances and the literary features of both works, taken together with their cultural and political contexts. We begin with fairly moderate readings; as students improve in fluency and stamina, they work up to reading about 120 lines of Vergil a week.

The course follows the College Board’s 2012 revised curriculum for AP Latin (Caesar and Vergil). It cannot be called AP Latin, since I am not seeking official approval from the College Board, but our students routinely go on to take the exam and to do well in it. Taking the AP Exam is not required but a student who completes the course successfully should be well prepared for it.

Course Website: Latin IV (Caesar and Vergil)

Sections and Teachers

Section 1:

Instructor: Bruce McMenomy

Starts: September 5, 2024
Ends: May 29, 2025

Monday 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM ET • Thursday 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM ET

Tuition: $750.00


Latin III or equivalent. Serious preparation in Latin prose and history. Students not entering through Latin III should contact the instructor: the course begins at an easy pace, but accelerates continuously throughout the year.

Recommended background

A strong foundation in Latin grammar and vocabulary for reading is of course necessary, however that has been acquired.

Within our program, Western Literature to Dante is highly recommended, but by no means required; familiarity with the Homeric epics is recommended as well, but the material will be covered.

Teacher's notes:

Students in the past have routinely scored well on the Latin AP Exam, but the AP Exam is not required. The goal here is to get strong reading competence in both prose and poetry.

Textbooks and Materials

This item is required:

Caesar: Selections from his Commentarii De Bello Gallico , Authors: Hans-Friedrich Mueller, G. Julius Caesar

ISBN: 0865167524

Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore

Other information: Prices on this have fluctuated severely over the last few years. It should be around $45. If it goes skyrocketing from there, let me know via email and we'll come up with some alternative solution. If Amazon is tweaking the prices unreasonably, check into the option directly from the publisher here:

This item is required:

Syntactical Mechanics [Edition or Version: 1], Authors: Bruce A. McMenomy

ISBN: 0806144947

Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore

Other information: This book is also required for Latin III, so continuing students will already have a copy.

This item is required:

The Landmark Julius Caesar: The Complete Works: Gallic War, Civil War, Alexandrian War, African War, and Spanish War [Edition or Version: 1], Authors: C. Julius Caesar, Kurt A. Raaflalaub (ed.), Robert B. Strassler (series editor)

ISBN: 0307377865

Publisher's website: The Landmark Julius Caesar: The Complete Works: Gallic War, Civil War, Alexandrian War, African War, and Spanish War

Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore

Other information: This is a magnificent book and a bargain for what it contains. If it's prohibitive, please let me know. I would permit another translation of Caesar's text, but this edition supplies a great deal of supporting information that will make the shape of Caesar's campaigns vastly more accessible. In either case I will be assigning readings from the accompanying web document (which is available freely to all) — which contains about 325 pages of material that wouldn't fit into the book itself.

This item is required:

Vergil's Aeneid: Expanded Collection , Authors: P. Vergilius Maro, Barbara W. Boyd

ISBN: 0865167893

Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore

This item is required:

Why Vergil?: A Collection of Interpretations , Authors: Stephanie Quinn

ISBN: 0865164185

Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore

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