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Prima Latina Pronuciation Inconsistencies


serinat
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Anyone else bothered by this? Leigh Lowe pronounces the words incorrectly both on the CD and the DVD. She introduces the vowels correctly, then goes on to say them wrong. Some examples:

 

-ambulo: she says "ahm-byoo-lo" (shouldn't it be "ahm-boo-lo?")

-laboro: she says "luh-bo-ro" (should be "lah-bo-ro")

-supero: she says "soo-pee-roo" (should be "soo-peh-ro")

 

She also is inconsistent on syllabic emphasis; is it SOO-peh-ro or soo-PEH-ro?

 

A lot of it is just American laziness in vowel pronunciation, which is fine in everyday speech, but not when modeling Latin pronunciation!

 

I've dropped using the CD and DVD, but now I feel like I have to master Latin pronunciation myself. My biggest issue is with syllabic emphasis; I don't know Latin very well (besides all the Latin I learned in singing) so I can't always remember/figure out where the emphasis goes.

 

Anyone else bothered by this? I'm leery of continuing with Memoria Press Latin programs at this point.

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I never used the DVDs, but the CDs are like that. MP doesn't get into proper syllabic emphasis until First Form, so we went through LP and LCI before we got any good lesson on it. And it is explained well in the FF videos. They also stress in LP and LC that latin isn't being learned for proper pronunciation. There are no native speakers anymore to correct you.

 

It has been fine for us anyway. If you want to hear pronunciation, do you have access to Mango? Our library has it, and we can hear latin there. The pronunciation is Classical, not Ecclesiastical, but you can hear the accents. It is very similar to Italian.

 

Oh you could go ahead and read the First Form text lessons on emphasis for now, that could help.

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It's good to hear that First Form Latin has good pronunciation. I feel stuck as to what to do this year, though. I am teaching a 2nd grader and 4th grader together, so I need to stay at the Prima Latina level.

 

It's frustrating because conceptually, it's a great little Latin program. But the pronunciation errors are a huge flaw that I'm not sure I can get over.

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Obviously my ear isn't greatly discerning because I haven't picked up on this.

 

There are free Latin grammars online that explain where accent "should" fall. Aside from that, most sources I've read say that getting hung up on pronunciation is unprofitable and so it's not something I'm inclined to be anal about.

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I never used the DVDs, but the CDs are like that. MP doesn't get into proper syllabic emphasis until First Form, so we went through LP and LCI before we got any good lesson on it. And it is explained well in the FF videos. They also stress in LP and LC that latin isn't being learned for proper pronunciation. There are no native speakers anymore to correct you.

 

It has been fine for us anyway. If you want to hear pronunciation, do you have access to Mango? Our library has it, and we can hear latin there. The pronunciation is Classical, not Ecclesiastical, but you can hear the accents. It is very similar to Italian.

 

Oh you could go ahead and read the First Form text lessons on emphasis for now, that could help.

:iagree: Latin is not a spoken language any more so you don't need to worry so much about the pronunciation (like you would with a modern language like Spanish). The grammar is the important part and what the student needs to be focused on. The spoken parts are for fun and for ease of memorization. Plus, you have to take in account accent...since no one has a Latin accent, their natural accent will come through slightly and change the pronunciation a little. This is bound to happen with any audio Latin program that you do since they are all being taught by native English speakers.

 

The spoken component of Latin is so minor that I believe upper level programs like Wheelock's and Henle only focus on the written component (someone correct me if I am wrong).

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We are doing Latina Christiana 1 (with the DVD), and I have noticed this as well...The vowel pronunciation is presented correctly up front, then words are pronounced in a different way...

 

I thought it was in my head, but it is good to see I am not the only one who notices this...

 

What are you going to do?...I like the program, but the off pronunciation does bother me...

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:iagree: Latin is not a spoken language any more so you don't need to worry so much about the pronunciation (like you would with a modern language like Spanish). The grammar is the important part and what the student needs to be focused on. The spoken parts are for fun and for ease of memorization. Plus, you have to take in account accent...since no one has a Latin accent, their natural accent will come through slightly and change the pronunciation a little. This is bound to happen with any audio Latin program that you do since they are all being taught by native English speakers.

 

The spoken component of Latin is so minor that I believe upper level programs like Wheelock's and Henle only focus on the written component (someone correct me if I am wrong).

 

While I agree with what is in bold, the problem I have is the consistency of the teaching...If being taught something from the same source, it should be consistent...

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This really annoyed me in Prima. The Southern accent was annoying, but the inconsistency in how she pronounced things was crazy!!

 

(I thought the CD for LC I was better. The DVD still had problems, IMO.)

 

We just pronounced things "our way" and went with it. I'm kicking myself a bit, though, because DD#1 "decides" how things should be pronounced in Spanish however she wants to because I was lax with Latin. It is taking me longer to convince her that it REALLY matters when in comes to Spanish and that YES, she needs to say things properly. (I understand why some colleges require a classroom environment for foreign language if they see people coming in like my dd who know the grammar & vocab, but can't speak it worth a darn! I may not agree with them, but I sure do understand it now.)

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We just pronounced things "our way" and went with it. I'm kicking myself a bit, though, because DD#1 "decides" how things should be pronounced in Spanish however she wants to because I was lax with Latin. It is taking me longer to convince her that it REALLY matters when in comes to Spanish and that YES, she needs to say things properly. (I understand why some colleges require a classroom environment for foreign language if they see people coming in like my dd who know the grammar & vocab, but can't speak it worth a darn! I may not agree with them, but I sure do understand it now.)

Yes, I am with you. I am concerned about this, as well.

 

I agree with all of you above who say that it doesn't really matter how you pronounce it - to a certain extent. I'm not talking about the difference between classical and ecclesiastical Latin. There are standards within each pronunciation that are fairly easy to follow, if you know the rules; I'm just wishing Leigh Lowe followed the rules that she taught. My kids actually caught it before I did. Children are very sharp when they are presented one set of rules and then hear a variation.

 

I will probably just look for a book that can guide my pronunciation as I teach the kids. I just didn't expect to have to do that after buying the DVD and the CD.

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If you know how to pronounce the Latin, do you need the CD's? You can just do oral drills yourself. This does worry me since we are using PL next year. I have been going through FF1 and Henle 1 on my own so I am pretty confident with pronunciation so I probably won't use the CD's. I can tell you that FFL has perfect pronunciation. You can buy a pronunciation CD from Seton homeschool for Henle that is great.

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Given how quickly people dismiss the importance of consistent pronunciation, I am constantly vexed at the shoddiness of audio aids. Learners are easily intimidated by pronunciation, but a good CD or DVD could build familiarity directly through experience. But nobody needs help pronouncing Latin haphazardly, and I am galled that so many programs are actually charging money for the service.

 

The Tunbergs went through a lot of trouble carrying over the poetic voices of Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein into Latin. But if you can't pronounce the language, you can't hear the poetry. That's not even to mention a long history of Latin poetry that throughout multiple dialects and evolving traditions has managed to make its rhythms heard across centuries, only to find our modern age so eager to dispense with it because even people who adventure to study Latin these days don't see the value in preserving its voice at the cost of a bit of extra effort.

 

But, as I say, a good audio aid of consistent pronunciation would go a long way toward easing the frustration of learners trying to master pronunciation. I'm making a note here to start a list of which programs are known to be slip-shod in pronunciation. I will say that the recordings that are part of Lingua Latīna per sē Illūstrāta is nicely consistent, with some quirks that are more interesting than confounding. I have a program called Latin Memory Songs which I found of variable consistency. Anyone have another candidate?

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I will keep that in mind about the flash cards. I don't have the DVD, just the CD and 7 lessons in neither I nor DS have noticed differences yet but if I did notice differences in an audio aid I had paid for, no doubt that would frustrate me also. If I begin to notice problems, I will jut go sans CD and refer to the pronunciation and accent from the Latin Grammar I use in my own learning when needed.

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We are doing Prima Latina, and you are absolutely right. I also have Latina Christiana, and I am using the flashcards from LC that correspond with Prima Latina. Those cards have the accents, so that has helped me with the pronunciation.

Yes! I just noticed this. For those using Prima Latina, definitely get the Latina Christiana flashcards. There are more than you need, but all the PL words are in the LC cards somewhere. You just have to find them. And the accents are all written on the card. My girls have been using the flashcards themselves, so I hadn't even seen them until we did review yesterday. Good point.

 

I'm very encouraged to hear positive reviews on First Form Latin, because I planned on using it.

 

I want to re-iterate that Prima Latina is a great, gentle introduction to Latin, IF you can learn the pronunciation yourself AND get your hands on the Latina Christiana flashcards.

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Given how quickly people dismiss the importance of consistent pronunciation, I am constantly vexed at the shoddiness of audio aids. Learners are easily intimidated by pronunciation, but a good CD or DVD could build familiarity directly through experience. But nobody needs help pronouncing Latin haphazardly, and I am galled that so many programs are actually charging money for the service.

Agreed.

 

The Tunbergs went through a lot of trouble carrying over the poetic voices of Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein into Latin. But if you can't pronounce the language, you can't hear the poetry. That's not even to mention a long history of Latin poetry that throughout multiple dialects and evolving traditions has managed to make its rhythms heard across centuries, only to find our modern age so eager to dispense with it because even people who adventure to study Latin these days don't see the value in preserving its voice at the cost of a bit of extra effort.

I need to read these!

 

But, as I say, a good audio aid of consistent pronunciation would go a long way toward easing the frustration of learners trying to master pronunciation. I'm making a note here to start a list of which programs are known to be slip-shod in pronunciation. I will say that the recordings that are part of Lingua Latīna per sē Illūstrāta is nicely consistent, with some quirks that are more interesting than confounding. I have a program called Latin Memory Songs which I found of variable consistency. Anyone have another candidate?

Please keep me posted on the status of this list. I think it would be beneficial to many.

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This has confused my son as well, which is why I'm no longer going to use the DVD's. It also has the added benefit that we can go through the material much more quickly without the DVD's. My son seems to be enjoying Latin much more without them.

Absolutely - I love that Latin is going waaaay faster now. But for some reason, my girls loved the DVD, so they're disappointed that we're not using it now.

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I want to re-iterate that Prima Latina is a great, gentle introduction to Latin, IF you can learn the pronunciation yourself AND get your hands on the Latina Christiana flashcards.

 

:iagree:

 

I went with Prima Latina because I didn't see anything else out there for early elementary that continued on through later elementary and junior high. I love the gentleness of Prima Latina and that Latina Christiana will review all of Prima Latina and build on it.

 

But I am irked about the pronunciation. Having a background in Spanish, I can see that the pronunciation is very similar. I consider Latin a foundation for other Latin-based languages, so for me pronunciation is very important.

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