At least once a month, someone will contact me with this question:
“What do I order if I want to start reading Lingua Latina by Hans Ørberg?”
This is a good question.
After all, Lingua Latina is completely in Latin. If you try to order it, there is a very good chance you are going to get confused.
That said, here is what I recommend:
Order Lingua Latina. This is the book you should order. You could stop here. Hans Ørberg designed the perfect self-taught Latin manual. Just start reading. Read it again, and again, and again. Read it until you master it. This is the cheapest way to teach yourself Latin. You do not need everything else that I am about to recommend.
Many of my students complain that no English explanation exists in Lingua Latina. This is, in part, why I created Visual Latin. Visual Latin explains, in English, the grammar behind Lingua Latina. If you want video explanations of Latin grammar, order Visual Latin. It is the most comprehensive Latin video course available today. There are 60 lessons. Since each lesson contains 3 videos, that’s 180 videos! You can order Visual Latin here.
If you want a written explanation of Lingua Latina, order the explanation Hans Ørberg wrote himself. Order Latine Disco, by Hans Ørberg. Unfortunately, the print is small, making the book difficult to read at points, but, the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. You are basically reading the author’s notes, in English.
I recommend the exercise book with hesitation. If you are a novice, this book will overwhelm you. Not only that, you really do not need it. At the end of every chapter in Lingua Latina, you will find a homework section. You will find three homework assignments: Pensum A, Pensum B, and Pensum C. (Pensum is a Latin word. It means task or homework.) Complete these. The exercise book is more of the same. It is like adding Pensum D, C, E, F, and G. Helpful, for sure. But, not necessary.
Since Lingua Latina is an international book, for international audiences, there is no Latin-to-English glossary. Personally, I think that is a good thing. It forces you to begin thinking in the language. You could order a Latin-to-English dictionary, but you really do not need to. There are several free ways to learn the vocabulary. You could just go to Quizlet and enter Lingua Latina. You will end up with flashcards for the entire book. Go here: https://quizlet.com/subject/lingua-latina/. You could also learn to use the site Whitaker’s Words. Plug in any Latin word and you will get the definition right away.
Of course, if you just do not want to go it alone, I have taught Lingua Latina classes online for years. Those classes are still up on my site and are available 24/7. You can find out more about what I offer here: https://dwanethomas.com/join/
Lingua Latina is the best Latin book out there. I have read them all. There is nothing like this book. You can learn Latin. You can read this book. If you get stuck, I am happy to help!
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/downloads/via-latin-lost/
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.