Classics & Latin
Our Classics department has a history of excellence and we are proud to be one of the few remaining schools in Merseyside to still offer the full range of classical subjects: Latin, Greek, and Classical Civilisation.
In Sixth Form, Latin and Classical Civilisation are offered as A-Levels, both following the OCR specification.
Classical Civilisation teaching is shared with the Girls’ School; the co-educational learning experience fosters a diverse and varied range of opinions on topical issues when studying literary texts.
While those wishing to study Latin must have taken the subject at GCSE, there is no prerequisite knowledge required for Classical Civilisation, although a GCSE can be helpful.
Latin at A-Level follows the same broad pattern as it does at GCSE, with a mixture of language and literature.
The emphasis of the course is on reading, understanding and appreciating the literature of the Romans in its many forms and students read two set texts; poetry by Catullus and Cicero’s Pro Cluentio. There is no writing of Latin required in any part of the course.
The extensive study of literature of different genres allows students to develop sophisticated grammatical, historical and literary criticism skills, and to reach into the heart of the ancient world through sublime literature. It also fosters skills such as the ability to analyse, to defend an opinion, to argue, to present views, to write articulately and deal with complex primary sources.
Students are invited to take part in a number of competitions which run annually such as the CICERO international competition, the Latin and Greek reading competition and numerous essay competitions offered by the various colleges of Oxford and Cambridge. We also take advantage of lecture days hosted by Manchester and Liverpool Universities, Sovereign education days and theatrical productions of relevance in the local vicinity.
Latinists go on to read a range of courses at university from various classical combinations to Medicine, Law, Modern Languages, Philosophy, Land Economy, History and English Literature.
A-Level Classic Civilisation
Literature and ancient history are at the heart of the A-Level course.
Students study epic poetry (Homer’s Odyssey and Virgil’s Aeneid), philosophy and Greek art and architecture. Students will be expected to study, discuss, think about and form judgements on the works on the specification. An appetite for reading and for seminar-style exploration is welcome and we encourage lively debate.
Students acquire important transferable skills such as analysing sources and developing independent, critical and evaluative approaches.
There are also regular extramural activities including theatre trips, university lectures, competitions, museum trips and exposure to artefacts from the classical world.