What Exactly Is Latin?
In This Chapter
◆ An examination of Indo-European roots
◆ The rise and fall of Rome in one paragraph
◆ A look at Late Latin
◆ You already know some Latin!
Latin has its roots in the Proto-Indo-European language spoken by the inhabitants of Latium (the central part of what is now Italy) from at least the eighth century B.C.E.
Latin became the language of Roman literature, which started with translations from the Greek and swiftly became the vehicle of original Roman poetry, prose, and drama. Livius Andronicus was the first to translate the Odyssey into Latin, around 200 B.C.E. Plautus was an early playwright, famous for Aulularia, The Pot of Gold, and other comedies. Cicero has left us many speeches, letters, and ...