I used to study Latin at my old high school. I was pretty good, and finished 2 years, enough to take the SAT II Latin test, if I so wished.

However, I then switched to a high school that doesn't offer Latin. I've been wanting to take Latin up again, but I'm not sure how. We finished Wheelock at my old school. Does anyone know any good textbooks or strategies for restarting a study of Latin?

  • Hi ChemSniper, and welcome! This is a good question, but it's pretty broad for this format. A huge number of resources could be used to accomplish what you are looking for, and providing and maintaining a comprehensive list is quite difficult. This was previously discussed here: How to list resources? May 30, 2016 at 3:31
  • To all: If there is a "big resource list question" like this that you want to ask, please do not ask right away. Instead, post your suggestion in this meta thread or upvote existing ones. Most popular suggestions will be implemented. Only one such question has been asked so far.
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    May 30, 2016 at 8:04
  • Welcome to the site, @ChemSniper! As the other comments have noted, we've been talking about putting up a general question of this kind, and your question has led us to action! Take a look at latin.stackexchange.com/questions/957/… . There's one answer there so far, but I'm confident others will join it soon. Good luck in your search! May 30, 2016 at 16:22

2 Answers 2


It's great that you are trying to pursue Latin on your own: I too studied in high school but only started getting decent when I started reading and studying on my own time.

The answer to this question really depends on what your goals and skill level are. @Hugh offers a good suggestion if you are interested in studying medieval Latin. Here are three suggestions, in no particular order, that might put you on the right track.

  1. Review your previous textbook: Two years can be an eternity if you don't practice in between: the familiarity of the lessons, exercises, and vocabulary might give you a leg up if you are trying to get back into the swing of things.

  2. Have a look at Orberg's Lingua Latina: Orberg uses the natural method to slowly increase in difficulty: by the time you finish the second book, you will be reading fairly advanced Latin. If my own experience is any indication, I think that the natural method pairs excellently with a prior foundation in the rote learning techniques of more traditional books like Wheelock's.

  3. Read on your own! There are innumerable ways to get Latin texts online, for almost any skill level. If you are interested in a particular topic (Philosophy, History, Theology, etc.), it is likely that you can find a Latin work that you would be able to go through, albeit painfully at first. The bridge from curated textbook Latin to real Latin can be a difficult one to cross, but once you do...you realize why Latin is awesome to know.

  • Good suggestions. For 3, the Loeb Classical Library is especially useful -- it gives original Latin texts with a facing-page English translation, which considerably lessens the pain level.
    – TKR
    May 29, 2016 at 19:57
  • 2
    I second the suggestion of Lingua Latina, which I used to return to Latin after several years away. Depending on how much you've retained, you may get through the first book rather quickly, but the second book is all about taking the reader from an understanding of textbook Latin to an understanding of actual Latin. May 30, 2016 at 0:17

More Latin, and possibly more interesting Latin, was written and studied after the classical period than you might expect.

If you would consider learning medieval Latin, there is a course on the UK National Archive site. The course uses handwriting from manuscripts.

This would give you access to such treasures as the early geographical material from the University of Ghent, and the Yale Beinecke early manuscript Library; and an account of The White Ship Tragedy;

  • Thanks for your contribution! I think the OP is asking about the best strategy for getting back into Latin after a hiatus, so it might not be an appropriate answer to point him to the study of medieval Latin (which I love, btw).
    – brianpck
    May 29, 2016 at 19:10
  • @ChemSniper, I hope you find the process as rewarding as I have
    – Hugh
    May 29, 2016 at 20:36

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