A Horace Workbook
By David J. Murphy, Ronnie Ancona
A Horace Workbook, written to offer students additional practice with the poems on the AP* syllabus. The Latin text (twenty odes and one satire) that is required reading for the AP* Latin Literature Exam is included along with exercises that will help students practice for the AP* examination on Horace.
The Teacher's Manual contains the complete Student Text with answers supplied and scoring/grading guidelines.
- The Latin text that coordinates with the text from Ancona's Horace: Odes and Satire I.9 but can be used with any Horace Latin text
- Short Answer questions on the grammar and syntax of each poem
- Multiple Choice questions on textual comprehension and literary analysis
- Translation of selected lines from each poem
- Short analysis questions of the type found on the Horace AP* examination and important for mastery of Horace's text
- An appendix of multiple choice questions on previously unseen passages
- Complete vocabulary
- Complete answers to exercises that provide a supply of the types of questions commonly found on the AP* Exam such as: Multiple Choice, Essays, Short Analysis, Translation, Scansion
- Answers for scoring translations via the “chunking” method
- Comprehensive, customized grading guidelines for each essay
- Essay grading rubrics based on the AP* model
- Three review tests modeled on the exercises provided for each poem
- Two appendices with sample student essays and scoring guidelines
David Murphy earned his Ph.D. in Classics from Columbia University. Since 1982 he has been teaching Latin and Greek at the secondary school level, including courses that prepare students for both the Vergil and the Latin Literature AP exams. He served as an AP reader for eight years, the last as a table leader, and was trained to give AP workshops for teachers. He has taught Classics since 1993 at The Nightingale-Bamford School where he is now Head of the Upper School. He has given papers at meetings of the American Philological Association, the Classical Association of the Atlantic States, and other conferences and has published on paleology, textual criticism, and ancient philosophy. Publications include “The Basis of The Text of Plato’s Charmides” in Mnemosyne 55, 2002 and “Doctors of Zalmoxis and Immortality in the Charmides” in Proceedings of the V Symposium Platonicum (2000), and co-author, A Horace Workbook (2005).
Ronnie Ancona is the author of Time and the Erotic in Horace's Odes (1994), Writing Passion: A Catullus Reader (2004), Horace: Selected Odes and Satire 1.9 (1999, 2nd edition, 2005), co-editor of Gendered Dynamics in Latin Love Poetry (2005), co-author A Horace Workbook (2005), and editor of Latin Scholarship/Latin Pedagogy (forthcoming). Her research interests include Latin lyric poetry, women in Greece and Rome, and Latin pedagogy. She is currently Professor of Classics at Hunter College and The Graduate Center (CUNY), and Director of Hunter's MA in the Teaching of Latin. She has been an AP Latin Exam Reader and has conducted College Board AP Latin workshops for teachers.
Comments and Reviews
After fading from the general consciousness and disappearing from the standard curriculum, Latin is starting to make a comeback. However, for Latin to catch up, it's not enough to brush off the old grammar-translation textbooks from the days of old. At the same time, T(otal) P(hysical) R(esponse) is probably not going to become the mainstay of Latin instruction either. What will?
For introductory prose, there is some fairly good stuff on the market, notably the Oxford and Cambridge series. And if you're just looking for fun with Latin, the adventures of Paulus and Lucia in Teach Yourself Beginner's Latin are a delight. But...
The place where Latin has always gotten difficult is the poetry. Horace, Ovid and Vergil thought with declensions and even they, we presume, sometimes must have wondered where the phrase they were working on was going to end and whether it would fit together. With its theoretically flexible word order, Latin allowed the Roman poet to do wondrous things to pair concepts and make it work with the meter. But for the non-Roman Latin student, this makes life very difficult. Until now.
A Horace Workbook is exactly the sort of book I wish I had had when I was first starting to decipher Latin poetry. And again, when I was reading Horace in graduate school seminars. In the middle? I found the whole thing rather difficult and stuck to Catullus and Ovid's Metamorphoses, which are at least a little more transparent to the modern American reader. A Horace Workbook, however, has just about the right touch: it uses grammar and other exercises to help you understand the poem, not to test your mastery of minutiae.
In a typical A Horace Workbook presentation, you are given the poem, followed by leading questions that make it easier to see how it fits together, as well as prompting the occasional a-ha where you might have otherwise missed what was going on. The whole thing is very user-friendly, taking you by the hand and leading you through the things you ought to notice before you start getting quizzed on them.
After the first exercise for each poem, there are a few activities meant to dovetail with what students need to be able to do for the AP exam or, in real life, to more fully appreciate Latin poetry at a time when the knowledge is there but the feeling isn't.
Finally, there is a section on scansion (for each poem) where the student can work on developing a Latin ear to go with the Latin brain. This may seem tedious to some, but we could rearrange word order to the language of choice for reading these poems if we were indifferent to the sound, to the voice, that brought them alive for their first readers and hearers. Scanning the poems lays the groundwork for bringing them alive and for understanding just what it is that makes the intricate part come together in sound, however jumbled it may look when diagrammed or parsed.
There are, of course, great books for capturing all the subtleties, all the nuances, that went with the glory that was Roman poetry. But they're above most of our heads. Unless you spend a lot of time wondering if there weren't more exciting ways to employ the ablative absolute or deeper, darker unheard implications in the use of future passive participles. In A Horace Workbook, we have a Latin poetry reader for the rest of us, helping to bring the Latin alive in an understandable and meaningful form. Anyone struggling in AP Latin, and, indeed, anybody who has struggled through Latin verse and wished they'd gotten more out of it, should give this workbook a look.
A Book Review
Horace is a difficult author for most Latin students to master. Therefore, any assistance that a teacher can get to help his/her students to understand better Horace's use of language is greatly appreciated. A Horace Workbook is a very nice resource which should be helpful to both students and teachers alike. The workbook, part of the Latin Literature Workbook Series produced by Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, is intended for AP and college use. However, since it includes only the odes and satire that currently make up the Horace syllabus for the AP Latin Literature exam, it is probably best suited for secondary AP classes. Although it could very easily be used with any Horace text, it is a very nice complement to Ancona's Horace: Selected Odes and Satire 1.9 (Wauconda IL: Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, 1999; second edition, 2005).
The workbook provides six different exercises for each ode and the satire: (1) short answer questions, (2) multiple-choice questions, (3) translations, (4) short analysis questions, (5) short essays, and (6) scansion.
The short answer questions are designed to direct the students through a parsing of one or two key words per line. Case and use of a word are the most frequent items called for, but occasional questions about figures of speech and agreement occur.
The multiple-choice questions are quite varied in content, hit on the key areas of the passages, and rarely overlap with the short answer questions on the same lines. These questions are an excellent asset for teachers who want to give their students extensive practice with this type of AP question. Even though there are no multiple-choice questions on Horace on the AP Latin Literature exam, students could easily benefit from additional practice with this type of question.
The workbook provides passages for students to translate and scan, but provides no more than the space and paper to do the work. The workbook contains no information about rules of scansion or the meters that Horace uses. There also is no information about figures of speech.
The short analysis questions are intended to help the student prepare for the "spot" question (LL9) on Horace on the AP exam. The questions are helpful and almost always include a question about the scansion of a line or a figure of speech. Since the workbook provides little or no guidance on how to answer these questions, teachers must familiarize themselves with the current AP standards for this question and be sure that their students are answering these questions fully and with enough properly cited Latin.
The essay questions are geared to give the students practice in writing the short 20-minute essay on Horace on the AP exam. Questions have been phrased in "AP style" directing the student to cite Latin references from throughout the passage and to avoid just summarizing the passage.
Since this workbook is specific and limited in scope, it is a very useful resource for the AP Horace teacher and student. It includes a Latin-English vocabulary section and a useful appendix with four practice sight passages with multiple-choice questions to give the student additional practice for first part of the AP exam.
— Thomas Stewart, Casady School
The Classical Outlook, 83.1