Welcome to Latin

Latin 1

Latin was introduced back into the curriculum in September 2013 to broaden the opportunities available in our thriving and successful language department.  Students say that studying the language, literature and history of ancient Rome gives them an awareness of our own history, an understanding of language and of the roots of many English words and a huge advantage in learning the grammar of the modern European languages they also study at school.  The analytical skills and intellectual flexibility demanded by the study of an inflected language are much valued by universities and employers.


Students have the opportunity to start Latin in Year 9, following a two-year course and taking GCSE in Year 10.  The course is intensive and demanding, involving the learning of the language to a high level and the study of prose and verse literature texts.

After the GCSE examinations, there are opportunities to explore the history and culture of the Romans, including an investigation of Roman York and trying out army manoeuvres in the playground.


Latin is taught as a full A Level course in the Sixth Form, with students taking AS Level in Year 12 and A Level in Year 13.  The language work and breadth of literary study at A Level make this a fascinating course with a wide relevance to students contemplating further study in modern languages, English, History, Medicine and Law. Students have gone on from our A Level course to study Classics at prestigious universities, including Cambridge, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Ancient Greek is offered as an enrichment course in Year 12, leading to the OCR Entry Level Certificate. Several students have gone on to study Greek further at the JACT Summer School at Bryanston, and there are opportunities to pursue their interest further with extra classes in Year 13.

Extra Curricular

We offer a trip to Rome and Pompeii every other year, with wonderful visits in 2015 and in 2017 and the next due to go in February 2019. We study the geography of ancient Rome in and underneath the modern city, visit the Forum and Colosseum, and explore, in the Vatican and in many of Rome’s wonderful churches, how Christianity has built on the foundation of ancient structures and ideas.  Students also enjoy exploring the sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum, which give a remarkably vivid picture of the extraordinary people who spoke the Latin we now study at school.