I received this question a few days ago:


I got the Bible.is app. I’ve memorized part of John 1 with Classical Conversations. The version you like has a few differences in pronunciation. We say ‘prin-kip-io”. The app says “prin-chip-io” 

We say “lu-ket” and the app says “lu-chet”.

Is that the difference between classical and eccliastical pronunciation? Can you recommend a version with the type of pronunciation I’ve been learning? I am starting your Visual latin 1 soon… 

Thank you!

Here is my reply:

I recommend Ecclesiastical pronunciation for sure.  But, honestly, there is little difference between the two pronunciations.  I created a video on this topic some time ago.  Here it is: https://youtu.be/Wh-QorH3Fi4

Ecclesiastical Latin

  • V is pronounced like our v.
  • Ae sounds like ay in hay.
  • C and g make hard sounds before a, e, and u.
  • C and g before e, i, ae, and oe sound like ch in church.

Restored classical pronunciation

  • V is pronounced like our w.
  • Ae sounds like eye.
  • C and g always make hard sounds

I’ve also written extensively about this topic in my ebook, Via: Latin for the Lost.

The Restored Classical Pronunciation was restored by British scholars in the late 1800s.

I learned the restored “classical” pronunciation when I was teaching myself Latin.  As soon as I discovered the audio Bible in Latin  I switched to Ecclesiastical pronunciation and have never looked back.

As for a version of the Bible in the restored “classical” pronunciation, I’ve not been able to find one.  In fact, I can find almost no free recordings of any books in the restored pronunciation.  Another wonderful reason to abandon that pronunciation, in my opinion.

In Visual Latin, I use a Latin pronunciation known as “Ecclesiastical” Latin.  It also goes by the names Italian, Church, or Medieval.  This pronunciation goes back to Dante, who was born in the late 1200s. This pronunciation has changed little in 800 years.  It is still used by the Catholic church and by Italians learning Latin.

Incidentally, learning Latin with the Italian (Ecclesiastical) pronunciation will help students greatly if they decide to study Italian later.  In my opinion, the restored classical pronunciation will slow them down dramatically.


If you are learning Latin, I have written a book with all of my best tips and strategies.  It’s available as a free download here: https://dwanethomas.com/via/

If you are interested in learning Latin, you can go through the classes on my site 24/7.  I recommend the book Lingua Latina by Hans Ørberg.  If you tackle the book and find yourself bogged down, you may find the classes on my site helpful.  To join, just click here: https://dwanethomas.com/join/

If you want a more professionally filmed experience, check out the best-selling DVD series: Visual Latin.

Or, if you want to skip Latin, and just jump right into learning English words from Latin and Greek roots, you may enjoy the series Word Up!  Warning.   Word Up! is a bit wacky.  You will learn a lot… but, you may find yourself rolling your eyes, too.

By the way, some of the links in this post are affiliate links. Not trying to pull a fast one on you. I only promote what I believe in.