136

A classmate of mine who got his Ph.D. in natural-language processing and now works at Google told me the following. It might be out of date and I might be remembering it wrong. But I just did a little, er, googling, and this seems to be passably well corroborated by other sources. How it works Google Translate is completely statistical. It has no model of ...


29

I recommend Hans Ørberg's Lingua Latīna per sē illustrāta series. Its main books are volume I, Familia Rōmāna, at the end of which the careful reader has a pretty fair grasp of Latin grammar, and volume II, Rōma Æterna, which takes readers from "textbook Latin" to "real Latin." These two texts also have associated workbooks and teachers' guides. Ørberg uses ...


25

The best free, online Latin-English dictionary is undoubtedly Lewis and Short. There are several ways to access it, too, and they are given in separate answers. Most people seem to go straight to Tufts' Perseus website, which has the Lewis and Short in its entirety. As it provides a direct link to each word, this is a great way to link someone to a ...


25

To answer the question ("What is Latin Google Translate good for?") as stated: Absolutely nothing. At least reliably.


17

It is always difficult to make this kind of charts. I think that the best thing that has been done on Latin over the last decades was to start studying it from a more linguistic point of view. By linguistic approach I mean, among other things, the following: Studying Latin within its linguistic environment, i.e. that of the Old Italic languages (Faliscan, ...


14

I've found I quite enjoy reading Ovid—his work is poetry, not prose, which adds a bit of difficulty, but the mythological subjects are pretty familiar, which makes it easier to deal with unknown words from context. And his style feels more transparent to me than e.g. Vergil's. I usually translate with The Latin Library open in one window and Perseus's word ...


13

For more thorough comparisons with different Latin dictionaries, including the Latin-Dutch dictionary LaNe, one can use Chicago's Logeion. You can type in either Latin or Greek (transliterated or unicode) and it will bring up a drop down menu for you to select the word (good for seeing a bunch of potentially related words very quickly). Besides LaNe and ...


13

I have used Duolingo for other languages, and I've now briefly tested it for Latin. There are two major issues: It goes way too fast. If the course has to be short for practical reasons, I would much rather have it stop early than go fast. The system is too inflexible at accepting translations in both directions. I am not sure if you can even reasonably ...


12

If you're looking for an English-to-Latin dictionary, I recommend A Copious and Critical English-Latin Dictionary, by William Smith and Theophilus (!) Hall. The most recent edition was published in 1871, so there are lots of ways in which it's not really suitable for today: many English words have changed their meanings since then, and many more have changed ...


12

You can find the abbreviations for Lewis & Short in the Latin Lexicon 'Numen' online: http://latinlexicon.org/LNS_abbreviations.php First you will find the abbreviations of ancient authors and their works; then those of commonly used words and signs; last a catalogue of modern authors and their works referred to in the dictionary. Here are the ...


12

While Google Translate may be useless to an advanced Latin speaker, a beginner such as me finds it helpful for gaining quick insights. I use it in combination with little tricks, such as splitting the sentence into separate clauses and/or adding punctuation and converting the syntax to the Subject–Verb–Object word order which makes Latin more “palpable” to ...


11

Collatinus I highly recommand Collatinus. There are a web version and a desktop version, and it's a free software (CC BY-NC). Functionalities search for lemma in several Latin dictionaries (Gaffiot, Calonghi, Lewis & Short, du Cange, Georges, Valbuena) flex a lemma scan a Latin text lemmatize a Latin text (with 7 target languages) perform its ...


11

I would suggest the PHI corpus search. To try out your example, I searched for numquam, facile, and mori close to each other, and the whole phrase by Seneca turns up — among a couple of false positives. The syntax is quite flexible, allowing you to force word boundaries (so that searching for mori doesn't return memoria), decide whether words are ...


10

Oh, God, the prudish lengths to which dictionaries go to avoid translating profanity correctly! I feel your pain—I too feel cheated and betrayed when this happens. It's like, aren't you supposed to tell me what this word means? Well, "to practice unnatural vice" is not what this word means. I don't know of any dictionaries that do their jobs properly in ...


10

The online version of William Whitaker's Words (originally an MS-DOS program, see Wikipedia) is very useful: http://archives.nd.edu/words.html It is very useful, especially translate from English to Latin or Latin English words. It can identify an inflected or derived form of a Latin words based on tables of conjugations and declensions it contains. Some ...


10

Each new paragraph shows a new generation (g means 'great'). Enclosures within (brackets) indicate the maternal side : tritavus = tritavia g.g.g.g.grandfather, mother atavus=atavia g.g.g.grandfather, mother patruus maximus g.grand uncle — amita maxima aunt — abavus *grandfather(=abavia — avunculus maximus g.grand uncle — matertera maxima aunt) patruus ...


10

I think the examples given in the question and in the answers are grammatically non-trivial and thus prone to translation mistakes, even by a human learning a language (two substantives, two verbs, etc). That Google makes mistakes might not be so surprising, and we could even argue that the tests were too stringent. Perhaps a much more revealing test is to ...


10

One slightly offbeat option would be Asterix. It's not quite classic literature, but it's well written and fun.


10

Try "Completely Parsed Cicero" by Maclardy. It´s on Amazon. There is: "Caeser Completely Parsed" by James B. Finch. Back in May, I couldn't find this though knew it existed. Price fluctuates between £30-94--beware. Alternatively, it's on the net, for free: "archive.org/details/CommentariesOnTheGallicWarCaeserCompletelyParsedBook1" There is: "Translating ...


10

Fortunately, almost all Classical Latin texts are in the public domain, since almost all Classical Latin authors have been dead for about two thousand years. Translations and commentaries are a different matter, but to the best of my knowledge, the exact words of Cicero and Vergil as transcribed from a manuscript are not under copyright anywhere in the world....


9

Pollux: Archimedes Project Dictionary Access Here you can search Lewis & Short, Liddell Scott Jones, and a few other dictionaries. The layout is not as good as on Perseus, but it loads much faster, so it is what I use. You can add a bookmark with keyword in Firefox in order to search from the address bar. You can then simply type e.g. le meretrix in ...


9

One possibility is to use Webxicon. It translates between several languages, including Latin and English. You can even leave the target or source language blank to get answers for all possible languages. It is sometimes useful to translate a Latin word to several languages at once and to see many translations options in all languages at one glance. If you ...


9

One option is Philolog.us which not only allows for quick looking up of entries in Lewis and Short, but also the Greek dictionaries Liddel and Scott's and Slater's Lexicon to Pindar. The big bonus for Philologus is its iPhone app. Sorry Android users, no Philologus yet, though one is in the works. But now there is: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?...


9

One option to consider is the online Latin-English Dictionary. It is essentially an online version of William Whitaker's words, and uses the exact same word list. (Full disclosure: this is a shameless self-plug for a side-project I worked on while teaching myself Python / Django.) Pros 35,000+ words Can accept and parse inflected words. (Searching for ...


9

Professor Wilifried Stroh's lectures on the history of Latin literature and on other subjects are incredibly entertaining, learned, and eloquent. I don't know when he made them, but since he was born in 1950 I doubt it was before 1960, unfortunately. Still, they're very worth listening to.


9

The PHI Classical Latin Texts Database http://latin.packhum.org The Packard Humanities Institute provides free access to Latin Litterature texts from the beginning to ~200 AD. There are currently two functions for searching through the database. It can be involved by using some keywords : You can refine a search with logical operators. & and | or ...


9

Erasmus has a complete list of vocabula affinitatum ("words for in-laws") in his Colloquia. This is post-classical, but Erasmus's Latin rivals that of Cicero. This definitely has some overlap with the previous answer: Maritus: husband Uxor: wife Socer: father-in-law (wife's father) Socrus: mother-in-law (wife's mother) Gener: son-in-law (daughter'...


9

The point of Google Translate (and this is not just for Latin) is that it only serves a purpose if you are able to judge the quality of its output, and understand that it's not a faithful account of the source text in any case. This means, of course, that it must only be used to translate a text in a language you don't know into a language you do. But if ...


9

One resource for learning Latin pronunciation is Nuntii Latini, the Finnish Latin news broadcast. The pronunciation is very clear and the news items are also available as plain text, making it easy compare the written and spoken word. When the show is not on a winter or summer break, it produces 5 minutes of news every week. It is not presented as study ...


9

Vox Latina by W. Sidney Allen (2nd edition, 1978) is the standard book for pronouncing not just Classical Latin, but noted variants, as well. The book is a companion to Vox Graeca, and is a reconstruction of how it would be pronounced according to a variety of sources. While it's a work of scholarship, it's easily accessible to undergraduates and other ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible