I am looking for recommended editions of the Aeneid and the Gallic Wars, suitable for (highly motivated) high school students. (I will be working on the AP Latin curriculum with my sons, but I'm not looking for a specific AP-focused resource—in particular I am not looking for test prep books.) My first preference would be an edition with inline vocabulary assistance, but I am open to correction on that point.

  • I have seen Pharr recommended for the Aeneid, but it only seems to have books I-VI.
  • Page looks like it has helpful commentary for the Aeneid, but doesn't have vocabulary helps.
  • 1
    I actually just got a copy of Pharr! I haven't read it yet, but I definitely recommend it as a fellow student. I had the same concern about only including books I-VI, though (and this is totally subjective) the first six are the better part of the story.
    – Adam
    Commented Mar 31, 2022 at 12:47

1 Answer 1


Pharr is definitely a common high school Vergil textbook. I'm sympathetic to it, and not just because we used it as well. Since getting through all of Vergil and Caesar in one year is unlikely, limiting it to the first six books isn't unreasonable. You get many of the best lines and scenes in those books, including:

  • the famous first lines and the plot background;
  • the Trojan horse and the burning of Troy in book II;
  • Aeneas' and Dido's interactions;
  • the underworld scene.

I personally found the first six books more exciting than the latter six, but if you really need all twelve, R. Deryck Williams' editions might be worth investigating. It's in two volumes, and is currently published by Bristol Classical Press. Instead of running notes at the bottom, it uses end notes, but it was designed with students in mind, so you will get plenty of glosses.

You could also adopt a double approach - first six books with Pharr, after which they can "graduate" to Williams.

As far as Caesar goes, I don't love the layout, but Giles Laurén's edition might be suitable. It's incomplete, but there's also the Dickinson College Commentary on books 1, 4, 5, 6.

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