What did Greek speakers in the Roman empire do when they wanted to learn Latin? They used Latin-learning materials containing authentic, enjoyable vignettes about daily life in the ancient world – shopping, banking, going to the baths, having fights, being scolded, making excuses – very much like the dialogues in some of today’s foreign-language textbooks.
These stories provide priceless insight into daily life in the Roman empire, as well as into how Latin was learned at that period, and they were all written by Romans in Latin that was designed to be easy for beginners to understand. Learners also used special beginners’ versions of great Latin authors including Virgil and Cicero, and dictionaries, grammars, texts in Greek transliteration, etc.
All these materials are now available for the first time to today’s students, in a book designed to complement modern textbooks and enrich the Latin-learning experience.