The study of Latin and Ancient Greek is introduced at Year 6 and rapidly becomes one of the most popular subjects of the curriculum. As they discover the secrets of how these intriguing languages work, the boys grow increasingly fascinated by the intricacies of conjugations and declensions, tenses and cases, voices, moods and hidden subjects.


Latin is taught using Who Said Latin's Dead, a unique course written by the Head of Department. The workbooks are based on the adventures of Guy and Olivia, two British school children lost in Ancient Rome, whose journey through the Ludus Magnus conveniently leads them through the Common Entrance Level 1 syllabus! The workbooks include puzzles and interactive activities as well as translations and practice sentences designed to engage the boys more effectively with the grammar.

In Year 8, the boys aim to master the vocabulary, grammar and syntax required for the exams ahead.The scholars bravely take on the ultimate challenge: prose composition! Using Practice Exercises by Bob Bass, the boys master much of the complex grammatical material that comprises the GCSE Latin syllabus. With plenty of hard work, they become skilled translators and tackle excerpts adapted from authors such as Livy, Pliny, Cicero and many more.

Literature and Classical Civilisation

Alongside their linguistic studies, all year groups explore Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey in translation. Knowledge of these key texts is required at Common Entrance and the boys love listening to and recreating scenes from these epic poems. There are also opportunities to learn about:

  • Roman daily life
  • Life in the Roman army
  • The history of Roman Britain
  • Other Greek myths, for example Theseus and the Minotaur

Ancient Greek

Ancient Greek is offered as a Commoners activity to boys in Years 6, 7 and 8. We begin by learning the alphabet and progress to reading and translating stories. Working at their own pace, some boys will tackle Ancient Greek scholarship papers in Year 8, others might attempt the Ancient Greek Common Entrance paper at Level 1 or Level 2. However, more often than not, boys opt to learn Ancient Greek purely for the joy of learning.

gaudium discendi - the joy of learning.