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Order a sound file of Quintus reading your Latin translation in the authentic pronunciation


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Latin Sound Files

We are very often asked to provide pronunciation guides for our translations into Latin, and in response we have now decided to offer our customers an optional sound file of Quintus reading their Latin translations in an authentically Roman accent and style. Quintus is a highly experienced and accomplished Latin reader and as a student won a number of prizes in the public Latin and Greek Reading Competitions organized by the Classical Association of Great Britain. He now regularly acts as a judge at these competitions.  Please note that this service extends only to our translations into Latin and that we do not offer recordings of our translations into English. As far as we are aware we are the only Latin Translation Service offering this additional service and in keeping with our overall charging policy the extra cost is modest. See our How to pay page for details.

We are sometimes asked how on earth we know how the Romans pronounced Latin 2000 years ago. This is a complicated question, but over the last 150 years a great deal of research has been devoted to the subject, culminating in scholarly works such as ‘Vox Latina’ (Latin Pronunciation) by Professor Sidney Allen of Cambridge. In general, as you might expect, Latin  probably sounded rather like modern Italian, with beautifully pure vowels.

Some features may surprise you. ‘v’ was pronounced like an English ’w’, for example, and ‘ae’ rhymes with English ‘eye’. I should mention here that the system of Latin pronunciation used by the Catholic Church, which is different in some important respects from authentically Classical Latin pronunciation, has no historical basis whatever. It is in fact Latin pronounced exactly as though it were Italian, and was only imposed on the church outside Italy in 1906. Before this date French Catholics pronounced Latin as though it were French, Germans as though it were German, and so on. However, if you prefer your Latin pronounced with an authentically ecclesiastical accent, Quintus will be pleased to oblige!


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