Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Level of Latin – Which is Right for You?

Interested in improving your Latin, but not sure which is the correct course for you out of the three courses we are offering this year? The following aims to give guidance only, but please feel free to contact the relevant course tutor if you need to discuss this further.


The Intensive Beginners course is suitable for those with no or a very little Latin (perhaps a year or two at school).


The intermediate level is suitable for those who have studied Latin and read some authentic Latin. As a general indication:

· GCSE or A level (however long ago) in the UK

· three or four years at high school/gymnasium

· one year/two semesters at college/university level

In general terms, you should have (in the past, if not currently):

· a basic vocabulary of 500+ words

· covered basic accidence (endings) for the five noun declensions and the verb conjugations (including subjunctives)

· covered syntax (uses of the subjunctive, conditional clauses, indirect statements/discourse: if these terms mean nothing to you in Latin, you should be on the beginner course)

Which intermediate class is for me?

One obvious difference is the timing of the classes. This may be your deciding factor.

The Intermediate level weekly classes are a more gentle reintroduction to what you have already learned, and offer time to work between sessions to focus on your own weaker areas based on what you have read in each session and consolidate the language. The approach is one of the teacher leading the reading of passages, modelling and explaining the Latin, and giving explanations of grammar as the need emerges. All work between sessions is rereading and consolidating the passage. We advise setting aside around 30 minutes to one hour each day to get the most out of the course. The classes start in October and again in January. You can join in January without attending the October classes.

The Intermediate level short course is for those who are slightly more confident and who can benefit from an intense burst of concentrated focus to turbo-charge their reading for the next few months. We have timed the courses so you can do both the January short course and go on to the weekly classes, which start the following week.

Diagnostic sentences

The following sentences help you to check your level. Can you translate the following? Or, if not, can you see how the translation came about once you have seen the answers?

1. puellam puer salutat.

2. fideles necaverunt leones.

3. in foro videberis?

4. rex militibus imperavit ut sacerdotem caperent.

5. censeo omnes linguam Latinam discere debere.

6. linguam Graecam quoque legere possem!

Answers to the above questions can be found here: