Wednesday, May 18, 2005

ARMAVIRUMQUE: Whose side are they on? ARMAVIRUMQUE: Whose side are they on?

ARMAVIRUMQUE: THE NEW CRITERION'S WEBLOG - whose side are they on?

Having taken four years of Latin in high school and a couple of years more in college, I couldn't help but check out an article from a site titled armavirumque.

This is one of those things that those of the younger generation will, for the most part, miss. In high school in the 1960s, I was at the end of a long line of those who took Latin. Yes, it is a dead language, except for, of course, its use in the Roman Catholic Church, but they don't pronounce it correctly, plus, I am not RC.

I don't know why I took Latin. Partly, because my parents suggested it, and my mother had taken it. And maybe partly because I always thought that I might want to go to law school - which I ultimately did, many years later. It is dead, and the literature that we read was mostly about two millenia old.

Maybe it is because much of what you read in Latin is poetry, or maybe because it teaches some sort of structure to life, but I don't regret having taken it one bit. Sure, everyone else took a practical, spoken, language instead. But, mostly those were Russian, German, or French, all pretty much useless. A lot took Spanish, but not as many, as it was somehow considered plebian.

In any case, the title to the blog hit a chord with me. Fourth year Latin typically was spent reading Virgil's Aenid. And this is the start: "Arma virumque cano". I sing of arms and men.

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