Latin Verse Composition

Latin Verse Composition

*Please note that this course will run only if two or more students enroll.

Course Description: In this course you will learn and practice to write Latin verses yourself! We will concentrate on hexameters and elegiacs in the style of Ovid, starting with some theory about the architecture of the verse, followed by exercises on metrics and easier metrical translations from English that will lead you, in the end, to compose a whole hexameter poem or Elegiac couplets by yourself. During this course, you will be able to deepen your knowledge of metre when we will speak about different kinds of feet (“pedes” like “Molossus”, “Ionicus” etc.), stylistic features or differences in the style of Roman authors. As regular homework, there will be metre excercises and actual verse composition, but there is always a possibility to try to compose spontanously during lessons. Learning how to compose verses, through which you will achieve an active knowledge of metre, will help you to appreciate the artwork of Latin poetry more. This course may be taught in Latin and/or English, based on the knowledge of the participants!


Level: Required is an advanced knowledge of Latin (not on a speaking level, just good grammar & vocabulary), experience in reading Latin poetry and a good knowledge of metre (you should be able to scan an read Elegiacs) and prosodical rules. Do not worry if you have insecurities here and there or make mistakes, which is natural when having just a passive knowledge: while composing verses, we will repeat all the metrical and prosodical rules anyway, whenever they come up.

Textbook: Instructor will provide materials, but useful resources are “quod temptabam” by J.H.L. Lambart (for translation of English text into verses), and, of course, the authors themselves: the best preparation to writing verses is a good knowledge of the authors (especially memorizing verses!)

Sections capped at: 5 students. If the course is sold-out, please fill out this waiting-list form.

Wednesdays, 3:00p.m. U.S. Eastern Time


Course has already past.

Sign up to be notified about upcoming Telepaideia courses


Marina Garanin

Salvete omnes, my name is Marina Garanin. Graduated from Heidelberg (Germany) and Oxford, I am currently working on my PhD on Latin translations from Greek at the University of Heidelberg. I taught Latin courses for beginners at the University, also living Latin. I have been practising spoken Latin since the beginning of my studies, and I have been taking part in different Latin (and Greek) speaking events such as the German Septimana Latina, the Schola Aestiva Posnaniensis, the “CAELUM” in Madrid, Living Latin in New York City, “LILIUM” in Florence. Most recently (2022), I participated at the Latin speaking theater festival “Thalia” organized by the Schola Humanistica in Vicenza, Italy. There, I played the part of “Medea” in the tragedy “Medeae Daemones”, in Iambic Trimeters, written by Stefano Vittori, with whom I speak Latin in our every day life. I also write metrical poetry in Latin, some of which are published in the periodical “Vox Latina” from 2019 on; some are awarded with prizes (“Chancellor’s Latin Verse Prize” in Oxford 2017, Certamen Sarbievianum in 2019 and 2021, Certamen “Mimesis – Modernità in Metrica” 2021). In my free time, besides of writing poetry and acting, I like drawing, singing and writing music; also, being a huge dog lover (not having one on my own though), I like reading books about dog behaviour and education. Also, I have a Latin YouTube channel (Musa Pedestris) where you can find poetry recitations, latin vlogs, livestreams, and other videos on Latin.