At school, my favourite subject was Latin. If the Classics teacher hadn’t got pregnant I’d have gone on to study Greek, too, and I suspect my life would have been quite different. Instead, over the years I’ve dabbled in maths, economics, English, Spanish, IT, poetry…
Not having a proper classical education has been one of my few regrets, so when I saw this on a poster at the university campus recently I thought perhaps I was going to have a chance to redress the situation:
Much as I feel passionately about language I was a bit taken aback by the next words on the poster:
Reading further, it sounded as if cookery was to be the subject of the classes rather than classics:
It was the university context that really confused me: if I’d come across the same poster in the High Street, I don’t suppose I’d have got my hopes up.
At school we learned from a text book called Latin for Today (does anyone else remember the classes that always started with Discipuli picturam spectate – “pupils look at the picture”?).
The poster is simply a reminder that “today” is very different now from what it was then, and that the 2013 apparently needs a different kind of Latin. What can I say?
O tempora o mores.
Edit: Corrigendum: as I pressed the ‘publish’ button I realised the title should read o me miseram. Eheu! I really do need those Latin classes.