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Classical Versus Christian Latin

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    Classical Versus Christian Latin

    I am unclear about the difference between Classical and Christian Latin. Will the knowledge of Christian Latin allow us to read Classical Latin? Since I am also not a Christian, would this be confusing to my children? I want them to be open to understanding and accepting people of all faiths, so I thought it would enhance the whole experience. I listened to the hymn samples online and they are so beautiful. They are such a vital part of our world history...I would love to have my children learn and understand them.

    The difference is only in the pronunciation

    The difference between classical and Christian Latin refers only to different pronunciations, not different ways of writing or reading Latin. You can easily switch between the two with only a few minor changes.

    The reason we like Christian pronunciation is because it allows you to use all of the beautiful songs and prayers created by the Church. In classical pronunciation, all of the hymns and prayers sound funny.

    Christian pronunciation is also closer to English, so it is easier for new students to learn. An example of the differences between pronunciations is found in the famous saying, "I came. I saw. I conquered."

    Christian Pronunciation (like it sounds)
    Veni. Vidi. Vici.

    Classical Pronunciation (v pronounced like a w)
    Weni. Widi. Wici.

    Eben Dale, a retired attorney in Hawaii wrote a great article on the pros and cons of each pronunciation.

    There are other great articles by Dorothy Sayers and Charles Bennett about the pronunciations.

    Dorothy Sayers began her Latin Education when she heard the words: "I think, my dear, that you are now old enough to begin to learn Latin."

    Brian Lowe