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High Schoolers Working With Latin Manuscripts

Thomas Whitley

Young scholars research ancient text: At Charlotte Country Day School, the dead language of Latin is coming alive. A small group of high-achieving junior and senior Latin students are spending their free time huddled around a computer screen with images of a ninth-century manuscript that before only scholars had dealt with.

The text is the oldest known Latin manuscript of Romano-Jewish historian Josephus's "De Bello Judaico," which chronicles the Jewish wars.

I went to high school in Charlotte and never got an opportunity like this, but I sure am glad that these students are getting to do this.

The students' findings will be published in an academic database generations of future scholars will use and analyze.

The project is voluntary, not for a grade, so the students make time before and after school, over lunch or during free periods.

"It's an incredible feeling to make a mark in the classics world," said junior Elizabeth Hunter, 17.

First, what a great testament to the work ethic of some young people today. Second, what a great way to turn students onto the study of history, texts, and classics. Sam would be proud.