Mr. Smith was my Latin teacher in high school for my Junior and Senior years. His emphasis on memorization of the basics provided me with the tools and confidence needed to tackle more difficult texts. This in turn made translation more straightforward as I was able to focus on and appreciate the art and literature of Latin authors like Catullus, Cicero, and Virgil. Additionally, Mr. Smith’s approach to Latin syntax and grammar was incredibly simple; I always found his approach easier to apply than methods taught in textbooks. In fact, a grammar guide he developed for his students was my most valued resource as a Latin major in college. Mr. Smith’s guidance in Latin (and beyond) was invaluable, and I will always be grateful for the opportunity to have had him as a teacher.
Carey’s command of Latin and his simple, honest, and humorous approach to teaching the language changed not only the way I learn Latin but how I learn in general: in order to attack a complex subject, you must master its essential components. English is a tough language— even for a native speaker; Latin is even harder. Knowing this, Carey devised his “List of Lists”, which reduces Latin grammar into two manageable parts, “usage” and “inflection,” in order to present the challenges of the language in a streamlined way. Carey’s approach to teaching Latin allowed me for the first time to understand the mechanics of the language and to begin to love its literature.
When I was looking for a Latin tutor for help interpreting three Horace odes for a calligraphy project, a trusted friend of mine recommended Carey. He very quickly synched up with my project goals and directed his considerable abilities and resources in support of my agenda. Thanks to his help, I’ve become much better at recognizing the clues that point to key words, noticing the effects of rhythm and word order, patiently considering the multiple meanings of words, and shifting from the details of translation to a broader searchlight focus. My appreciation of Horace has grown richer and deeper through our conversations, and I look forward to continuing to explore Latin poetry with Carey as my mentor and guide.