Centre for Continuing Education

Latin Course: Tacitus, Agricola

Latin. Learn Latin with us.

This Latin course studies the biography by the leading Roman historian, Cornelius Tacitus, of his father-in-law, Julius Agricola, the governor of Britain in AD 77-84. Tacitus combines his biographical narrative with a vivid, literary account of social, military and geographical contexts in Roman Britain. The Agricola remains a key historical source for the Roman occupation of Britain and invasion of Scotland.


This course aims to develop your knowledge and appreciation of classical Latin through the intensive study of the Agricola in its social, historical and archaeological contexts.


By the end of this course, you should be able to:

  • read Latin at the required level with fluency and enjoyment
  • recognise your deepened knowledge of both the historical figure of Agricola and the broader contexts in Roman Britain
  • utlilise your developed understanding of the stylistic choices made by Tacitus in the Agricola.

Intended audience

Intended for advanced-level Latin readers wishing to develop their knowledge and appreciation of classical Latin through the intensive study of original literature. Enrolling students should have studied the Oxford Latin Course Books 1-3, or have undertaken equivalent Latin studies.

Delivery style

Delivered as interactive workshops where active participation is encouraged. The class will work through the prescribed text in class, reviewing the grammar and syntax, and discussing the text in its social, historical and archaeological context.

Notification of sections from the Agricola will be provided to you for your study prior to each class. To get the most learning and enjoyment out of this course, you should prepare the upcoming material before each class. This is an essential part of consolidating knowledge and understanding of the course content.

Prescribed text

Woodman, AJ and Kraus, CS (eds) 2015, Tacitus: Agricola, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
ISBN 9780521700290

Recommended reading

The following texts may also assist you:

Mattingly, H and Rives, J (eds) 2010, Tacitus: The Agricola and the Germania, Penguin Classics.
ISBN 9780140455403

Ogilive, RM and Richmond, IA (eds) 1967, Tacitus: Agricola, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
ISBN 9780521700290

Kennedy, BH 1965, Kennedy’s Revised Latin Primer, Pearson.
ISBN 9780582362406; or:

Morwood, J 2006, A Latin Grammar, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
ISBN 9780198601999

Please Note

Selected Language and Culture courses that teach spoken language may include use of language immersion (course instruction in the selected language) as part of the training strategy.


  • Expert trainer
  • Small class size (~20 max)

Language courses are offered in four terms each year, approximately in January, April, July and October.

What others say.

  • I very much enjoyed the opportunity to expand my knowledge and familiarity with Latin. One shining facet of the experience was the tutor's willingness to work with the students, valuing their responses and providing a positive experience for each member. A thoroughly worthwhile and enjoyable learning experience.
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