The Latin Situation

I take Latin as one of my subjects (no, that doesn’t make me particularly intelligent, just because I took it doesn’t mean I can do it) and as a rule I work with the girl next to me, who I am allowed to insult because we are friends. Honestly, it’s fine. Anyway, we tend to translate a lot of things incorrectly, causing my teacher much amusement, but I shall tell you of my favourite times.

Because the text-book is set in Ancient Roman times, there are a lot of references to the Emperor and craftsmen etc. which we tend to get confused by, especially when it comes to the many, many God’s that they had. It is a seemingly endless list. But we also manage to get mixed up with some simple words, for example one time, instead of writing “the skilled craftsmen”, I translated it to mean “the dead craftsman”. It wasn’t particularly out of place, the chapter beforehand there had been some huge massacre and half the town was wiped out, but still. In context, it looked even worse.

The second time was probably my favourite. This was down to both a word order, person ending and general vocabulary problem.

What the actual translation was (sort of, I forget what it was): The King was led up to the alter.

What we managed to get: The Kingdom was led into the changing rooms.


And finally, time number three, which happened but a day ago. For this one, you will need to know that a ‘litter’ is a type of carriage, the one where important people are lifted up by a bunch of peasants way back when.

What the sentence was supposed to say: People were also carried in litters through the market place.

What we thought: People were also picking up litter.

I hope you now see exactly how hopeless I am in this lesson. I did rather wonder about the logistics of getting an entire kingdom in a changing room, but their ‘baths’ was just a blooming great swimming pool so who knows what else they got up to?


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