Influent > General Discussions > Topic Details
Socrates Mar 20 @ 1:31pm
Latin
Pleasantly surprised to see a Latin language option, always been interested in picking that up. Anyone tried it so far?
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Lцсїап º¹ Mar 20 @ 2:34pm 
Klingon would be more relevant.
tmwfte Mar 20 @ 3:10pm 
I'm just slightly disappointed they decided to conjugate Latin as feminine, despite the adjective having three genders (latinus, -a, -um). While it is the lingua latina, the adjective requires the noun in order to receive its gender. While we just tend to use what had been an adjective as a noun for a language in English (instead of specifying "the English language"), other languages have different approaches.

While studying Latin, I had many professors who would rankle at someone calling the language simply "Latina". They considered it lazy and imprecise, much like leaving off articles, pronouns, and such when you're translating between different languages.
Last edited by tmwfte; Mar 20 @ 3:10pm
Socrates Mar 21 @ 11:12am 
Originally posted by Łцсїап º¹:
Klingon would be more relevant.

Yeah, it's only still in use in the largest religious organization on the planet, in the study of historical manuscripts and classics, and archaeology. So clearly a made-up science fiction language with no real life application is more relevant.
malacoda Mar 21 @ 12:14pm 
Originally posted by tmwfte:
they decided to conjugate Latin as feminine
Wait a second. What about other genders? I mean -us, -um, -a?
Kaspar Hauser Mar 21 @ 3:23pm 
need a review about Latin!
angel Mar 21 @ 10:17pm 
Classically, it would have been Latīnum if you meant to merely name the language. But I'm quite comfortable with dropping the 'lingua' from 'lingua Latīna' and letting Latīna stand substantively, and so are the editors of the Latin Wikipedia: http://la.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lingua_Latina

As for review:

I've only started with the program yesterday, so I can't give a comprehensive review, but I will say that it's a program that only deals with vocabulary, and so far only vocabulary you'd need to talk about household things. There is a growing body of opinion that we should stop treating Latin as some kind of slow, painful coding system but as a language in which you can shoot the breeze, so something that gives you a virtual environment to bustle in clicking on things to learn what they're called could be fantastic.

So far, it's disappointing. First of all, it gives only the singular nominative of nouns, or plural nominative where appropriate, such as with ūdōnēs -- slippers. It does not give the identification of the word, without which you have not really added it to your vocabulary. An experienced student of Latin may be able to guess that the singular nominative of ūdōnēs is ūdō, but it could easily turn out to be ūdōnis. They give you the gender of the word, but by not giving you the full identification they have essentially relegated to you the task of actually finding the word in a dictionary in order to know you're using it properly. This is especially hazzardous in the case of verbs, since they only give you the infinitive, which means you can't tell if the verb is 3rd or 3rd I-stem.

This essentially negates the benefit of picking up vocabulary through a casual stroll through a virtual environment. Furthermore, many of these words are by the nature of the modern-home scenario are going to be late- or neo-Latin words that will not be in the dictionaries most students have available. It's quite likely that the person who made the Latin module relied on David Morgan's lexicon (Google it, it collects Latin terms for modern things from several learned sources), and browsing that may be more edifying that the same amount of time spent in this game.

Secondly, notice how I use macrons above to indicate vowel length? This program does not. Furthermore, the person who reads the words out is haphazzard in pronunciation. Even the same word may be pronunced differently from one use to another (īnstrūmentum gets such treatment, for example). I'm not going to try to sell you here on the idea of maintaining reconstructed classical pronunciation. But if you want to do so, there are no audio aids to help you do so consistently. Like this program, they are pretty much all haphazzard and inconsistent even if they are sold as aids for classical pronunciation.

So here we get 'līber', free man, when we click on 'liber', a book. The mispronciation of the verb prōluere as prōluēre -- signaling that it is a 2nd conjugation verb, which it is not. The adjective used for 'deodorant' is dēodṓrāns. Notice where I've placed the accent mark. The speaker in this game pronounces it to with vowel quality and accent to match the English, dīṓdorāns. The game spells out a word trochiscii, even though I can't find a dictionary that lists it as an -ius noun. Not to worry, because the narrator pronounces the two i's as only one long i, as it should be, except... he puts the syllable stress on that final letter in this polysyllabic word, which is only ever done in Latin with a handful of words that have lost end-syllables.

Without full identification of words, without macrons and without consistently correct pronunciation, it's not a very good educational tool. If the game came with an editor and Steam Workshop support, I would be interested in helping fix its lazy implementation of Latin. As it is, I would recommend avoiding it even if it were free, which it is not.

You'd get a better deal buying the e-book of Vocābula Picta, a picture dictionary of modern Latin usage for half the cost of this program: http://ascaniusyci.org/store/vocabulapicta.htm
Socrates Mar 23 @ 3:05pm 
Well, that's too bad. I've always kind of wanted to try the Rosetta Stone Latin course or something. Would be great to have an effective language course on Steam for Latin that didn't cost an obscene amount of money.
Kaspar Hauser Mar 23 @ 3:24pm 
Grātiam agō for the review Angel. Idea about Steam Workshop is great.
Last edited by Kaspar Hauser; Mar 23 @ 3:27pm
jeltzz Mar 26 @ 6:34am 
Hi, I just wanted to respond to angel's review and say thanks for this critical review. I am the party responsible for the Latin segment of the program, and want to acknowledge there are indeed some errors that need revisiting.

Firstly I want to say that some of those issues arised from the conditions of putting together the recordings, which did not permit as much review as I would have liked.

The issue of macrons and full identifications of words is complicated by the structure of the program, in that it doesn't really allow listing of endings as you might want for lexical forms. Because of this I defaulted to implementing lexical forms of nominatives, and infinitives.

As for macrons, I fully concur on the need to get them correct for pronunciation. Whether they are written in a learning environment is a pedagogical question that is open.

If you are interested in corresponding directly with me we could certainly fix some of the pronunciation issues, which I would be more than happy to do. Some of the other issues may not be easily fixed in the constraints of the program as it is.

Other suggestions for improving Influent in general or the Latin implementation in particular are welcome.
angel Mar 29 @ 4:37am 
I don't see any way to send you a message directly. I'll try to add you as a friend and see if that gets it.

But basically, one particular way I can make myself useful here, besides stating legitimate complaints, is that if I had the full list of 400 words used I could grind through the lookups and provide macronized identifications. I have been doing this with the vocabularies used in recent Latin translations for years (Harrius Potter, etc.) for years, and now have a lot less trouble doing it than when I first started because of the physical reference materials I've gathered and a greater familiarity with the growing online rescourses.

Since this is just vocabulary teaching software, I can see how there's no room for applying inflected forms, but I think the line provided for each word would be better filled with identification than with the lexical forms. Something like the magazine Adulescens can simply use the word in context and leave the identification as an excercise for the reader, but that's because using the word in a sentence has a different power to make it stick in the mind than a mere naming.
Romulus (The New Dionysos) Apr 6 @ 3:22pm 
Just bought it havent tried it yet so i dont know if it is any good, but I have studied latin (self taught) for about three years. If anyone wants to chat in latina add me!

Romulus (The New Dionysos) Apr 6 @ 3:41pm 
Originally posted by angel:
Classically, it would have been Latīnum if you meant to merely name the language. But I'm quite comfortable with dropping the 'lingua' from 'lingua Latīna' and letting Latīna stand substantively, and so are the editors of the Latin Wikipedia: http://la.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lingua_Latina

As for review:

I've only started with the program yesterday, so I can't give a comprehensive review, but I will say that it's a program that only deals with vocabulary, and so far only vocabulary you'd need to talk about household things. There is a growing body of opinion that we should stop treating Latin as some kind of slow, painful coding system but as a language in which you can shoot the breeze, so something that gives you a virtual environment to bustle in clicking on things to learn what they're called could be fantastic.

So far, it's disappointing. First of all, it gives only the singular nominative of nouns, or plural nominative where appropriate, such as with ūdōnēs -- slippers. It does not give the identification of the word, without which you have not really added it to your vocabulary. An experienced student of Latin may be able to guess that the singular nominative of ūdōnēs is ūdō, but it could easily turn out to be ūdōnis. They give you the gender of the word, but by not giving you the full identification they have essentially relegated to you the task of actually finding the word in a dictionary in order to know you're using it properly. This is especially hazzardous in the case of verbs, since they only give you the infinitive, which means you can't tell if the verb is 3rd or 3rd I-stem.

This essentially negates the benefit of picking up vocabulary through a casual stroll through a virtual environment. Furthermore, many of these words are by the nature of the modern-home scenario are going to be late- or neo-Latin words that will not be in the dictionaries most students have available. It's quite likely that the person who made the Latin module relied on David Morgan's lexicon (Google it, it collects Latin terms for modern things from several learned sources), and browsing that may be more edifying that the same amount of time spent in this game.

Secondly, notice how I use macrons above to indicate vowel length? This program does not. Furthermore, the person who reads the words out is haphazzard in pronunciation. Even the same word may be pronunced differently from one use to another (īnstrūmentum gets such treatment, for example). I'm not going to try to sell you here on the idea of maintaining reconstructed classical pronunciation. But if you want to do so, there are no audio aids to help you do so consistently. Like this program, they are pretty much all haphazzard and inconsistent even if they are sold as aids for classical pronunciation.

So here we get 'līber', free man, when we click on 'liber', a book. The mispronciation of the verb prōluere as prōluēre -- signaling that it is a 2nd conjugation verb, which it is not. The adjective used for 'deodorant' is dēodṓrāns. Notice where I've placed the accent mark. The speaker in this game pronounces it to with vowel quality and accent to match the English, dīṓdorāns. The game spells out a word trochiscii, even though I can't find a dictionary that lists it as an -ius noun. Not to worry, because the narrator pronounces the two i's as only one long i, as it should be, except... he puts the syllable stress on that final letter in this polysyllabic word, which is only ever done in Latin with a handful of words that have lost end-syllables.

Without full identification of words, without macrons and without consistently correct pronunciation, it's not a very good educational tool. If the game came with an editor and Steam Workshop support, I would be interested in helping fix its lazy implementation of Latin. As it is, I would recommend avoiding it even if it were free, which it is not.

You'd get a better deal buying the e-book of Vocābula Picta, a picture dictionary of modern Latin usage for half the cost of this program: http://ascaniusyci.org/store/vocabulapicta.htm

Salve, nota meam latinam non puram aut pristinam quod numquam antea usus sum linguam ad conlloquendum alteris solum ad legendum libros. Igitur si eruditior es in hac lingua mihi da veniam.

Etiamsi latina in hoc ludo est ex latina nova aut ex tempore prope terminem imperii Romani videtur mihi ut utilis sit. Semper quod mihi difficile, ad discendum linguae, erat vocabularium accipiendum rerum domesticarum et cotidianorum* (scio hoc verbum conruptum forte esse, sed suspecto te intellegere id quod significaveram).

Hunc meliorem esse quam nihil sentio.

Last edited by Romulus (The New Dionysos); Apr 6 @ 8:44pm
ORDNUNG MUSS SEIN Apr 6 @ 9:07pm 
Latin grammar makes my head hurt! :(
angel Apr 7 @ 11:02pm 
Rōmulus, meā sententiā, multum tibi verba cotīdiāna discere prōdest propter cōnsuētūdinis ūtilitātem. Hoc programma ūsum habet īnstar pōnendī scidulās adhaesīvās ubicumque in domō. Auxilium nunc dō in verbīs identificandīs, ut nōn necesse est omnibus quaerere in librōs. Etiam deinde multum prōderit nōnnūllōs fontēs habēre, quī sunt:

Whittaker's Words (reperī per Gūglem)
David Morgan's Lexicon
Conversational Latin for Oral Proficiency - John Traupman
Bantam New College Latin-English Dictionary - etiam Traupman, et optimum indicem Anglicō-Latīnum habet sī nōn Smith's Copious and Critical English-Latin Dictionary habēs.
Latein Deutsch Visuelles Worterbuch - http://www.amazon.com/Visuelles-W%C3%B6rterbuch-Latein-Deutsch-Coventgarden-Verlag/dp/3831090912/

Et aliī.
Romulus (The New Dionysos) Apr 7 @ 11:45pm 
Angel, illam sententiam meam primam dedi antea ludum lusissem. Nunc video ludum inutilem esse. Ceterum tristis sum quia ludum emi. Gratias ago tibi pro his rebus ad vocabularium augendum amice.

Maximum certamen mihi (et quod credo pluribus alteris esse) est in utendo linguam cotidiana. Vero in legendo libros magnam disperitatem esse quam in scribendo sententias mei ac alteras res, quae ultra materiam antiquae romae pertinant, video. Et haec certamen mihi remanet.

Ceterum, spero ut dies veniat quando lingua haec bellissima posita in plures ludos erit. Credo tantam rem augere posse apud iuveniores cupiditatem discendi latinam.

At me gaudet invenire alterum qui linguam scit!


Having played some of the game I agree with the previous statements that as far as latin goes this is next to useless.
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