Daniel Pettersson is a teacher, author, speaker, and co-founder of Latinitium. He is currently researching 16th-century language pedagogy and has taught Latin at Stockholm University, Sweden. He speaks Latin daily.
MY LATIN STORY
I HAD BEEN studying Latin for two years at university when I realized that I was not really reading Latin, I was struggling to translate and decode it. I was not understanding the Latin as Latin.
(This would change)
I was unsure if I should continue. So I decided I had to try something else–anything else. I spent months ordering books and trying every possible method I could find, ranging from 16th-century methods to modern ones. Using a wide combination of exercises and books I developed a strategy for myself to teach myself to learn to read and understand Latin as Latin–without translating or decoding it.
I learned how to read, write, and speak Latin, and it was a pleasure.
I got my Master’s degree and later was accepted to do a doctorate in Latin. In 2016, I was teaching at a Latin summer course in the US, and students and colleagues suggested I created a website to share my experience with learning Latin differently. I hesitated for a long time. Then in the late summer of 2016, together with my girlfriend Amelie Rosengren, I started planning the site.
In October of 2016, we launched it. It’s been an exciting journey! Every month 15’000–20’000 people visit Latinitium.
Having taught Latin in schools both in the US and Europe, in 2018, I gave the first-ever spoken Latin course at a Swedish university. That’s a sign that the interest in Latin is far from dead–it was just resting.
I have always been passionate about old languages and language learning from a young age! I remember with fondness when I was 13 and got very interested in earlier forms of English and later Latin, which has been a constant obsession and passion. I love learning new things, the last few years I’ve learned French, and am working on German—and also on my singing.
Language learning and teaching in the 16th century, with a primary focus on the activities and exercises, used to teach and learn Latin. Another key area of research interest is travel diaries in Latin written between 1500 and 1700.
- Master of Arts, Latin
- University teacher of Latin (Stockholm University)
- Board member of the Swedish Classical Society (est. 1935)
- Member of the Academia Latinitatis Fovendae
- Teacher, first spoken Latin university course in Sweden
- Speaker, Collegium, Latinitatis, Univeristy of Valencia
- Speaker, GrecoLatinoVivo International conference
- Speaker, Conventus ALF (Kentucky, USA)
Teacher, Rusticatio, SALVI, (USA)
- Teacher, Conventiculum Bostoniense (USA)
- Textbook Author (Pugio Bruti – A Crime Story in Easy Latin)
University course in Spoken Latin
Stockholm University, Sweden
During the summer of 2018, I planned and taught the first-ever university course in spoken Latin in Sweden. I was honored that the faculty wanted to adopt such a new method. It was a success!
University of Valencia
In September 2019, Daniel Pettersson gave a talk at the University of Valencia in sunny Spain. The subject of the talk was the strange 4th-century work on the Trojan war, supposedly written by “eyewitness” and author Dictys Cretensis. He also taught a class in Latin on Petronius.
Paideia Institute, New York
In 2017, Daniel brought the Swedish humanist author Olaus Magnus across the ocean to the international Living Latin Conference in New York. During the talk, I presented his life and peculiar work Historia de septentrionalibus gentibus.