"The Intelligent Person's Guide to Latin " is now available as a 235 page printed book in 8 x 11 format, laid out for clear reading with Arial 12 pt font, comb bound. Cost is $27.00 plus $3 shipping, US contiguous. For other postage reach me back by email.

To order, please confirm your name and address with this EMAIL and send check or PO money order $30.00 to:

William Harris
262 Duffany Road
Shoreham VT 05770

The "Intelligent Person's Guide to Latin" was on the web for two years, where it attracted a good amount of notice, brought many favorable emails on its usefulness, and noticeably increased the traffic to my website to the present count of over 42,000. It went off the Web in December 00, when I started to revise it and make considerable additions to the text, with authentic examples from Latin authors for virtually every section of the revised Grammar. But even more important is the current part on Sentence Construction or traditional "Syntax", which I feltneeded a completely new approach.

Reading a long document or book on screen is not only hard on the eyes, it is intellectually problematical, because the Web by its nature invites the reader to scan text, rather than read icarefully. Browsers still exercise their own judgment on text, but in this book it will appear exactly as I have laid it out, typography and format with the stability of a traditional printed book. Portability, adding marginal notes and actual "bookmarking" are additional reasons for paper, but nothing is as important as sheer "readability", which is after all the basic reason for having books in the first place. The Web has its purposes but we are by no means finished with the printed paper book yet.

This treatment of Latin Grammar is decidedly "user-friendly", it discusses reasons for things working as they do, and it mentions hard spots to watch out for. But above all, it uses hundreds of examples drawn from interesting and authentic Latin usage to shows the use and function of the "Rules", which are nothing more than general statements about what the examples show. In a sense this grammar with its myriad examples, is also a Review Reader. Traditional Latin grammars have always been "Prescriptive", they tell you how to write grammatically correct Latin. But for a Reading Knowledge of Latin you need a very different approach,. This book has been designed as a "Descriptive" treatise, aiming at helping you toward a working Reading Ability in the Latin language..

There is a considerable difference between the way English and Latin sentences unfold, and the greatest stumbling block to reading Latin is always the structure of our intuitive sense of English, which makes Latin prose often seem obscure and idiosyncratic. I have paid close attention to English as a preface to reading Latin, with the hope that more linguistic sense of the structure of English, as well as suspension of parallel translation when reading, will aid in reaching toward a Reading Knowledge of Latin. A full study on this is available on the web, and I suggest this as a sensible piece of "required reading" as a preface, before plunging into this Latin Grammar.

English Grammar as Prolegomena to Latin

William Harris
Prof. Emeritus Classics
Middlebury College

William Harris
Prof. Em. Middlebury College