Latin Day



Cari magistrae magistrique,

Si valetis, valeo. On behalf of the Baylor University Classics Department I would like to invite you and your Latin students to our campus in Waco for Latin Day 2019, Friday, October 18, 2019, from 8:45 am to 3:15 pm.

As many of you know, we normally host Latin Day in the Spring, but this past Spring we hosted the Area C convention of JCL. We have also heard that the Spring is often so full of other Latin conventions, and that the Fall might work a little better for many of you. So that’s our new plan.

This year’s festivities will include:

  • a certamen tournament
  • a declamation contest
  • a probatio competition
  • a humorous adaptation of a play of Plautus
  • a graphic arts contest
  • a presentation on Roman history
  • lunch at campus cafeterias
  • a campus tour
  • t-shirts

The day will begin with a short and entertaining lecture on Roman history from one of our faculty. Following that we will hold our Graphic Arts contest. Students are invited to submit creative projects in the graphic arts, in line with the contest run by the Junior Classical League (a list of types can be found here: These projects should promote the study of Latin or some aspect of Classical culture. I am consistently impressed by what your students do, and I am looking forward to some great ideas again this year. We do ask that the projects require no more than 5 minutes to present. Each school may submit up to four projects. All entries should be briefly summarized or submitted electronically by October 14 to Entries can be submitted on Latin Day itself, but we ask that they be pre-screened by teachers. We will enjoy and judge the projects to begin the day.

            We will follow the project competition with the first rounds of certamen and our probatio competition. Probatio is a group-based competition using ­certamen-style questions. Those who are not involved with certamen will still have the chance to show off their knowledge and compete. Since we can only accommodate eight certamen teams, we encourage you to sign up quickly by sending your school name and the names of your four team members to The competition will last throughout the day with each team assured of participating in at least two rounds. As in recent years we have instituted a certamen style consistent with the JCL competitions.

            We will also hold a sight declamation contest. Participating students will have the opportunity to read and perform a Latin passage out loud in a competition format. They will be


judged on quality of pronunciation (using a traditional Classical pronunciation) and delivery. Unlike in previous years, the passage will not be available before Latin Day. Instead, students will receive the passage on Latin Day and be given a few minutes to prepare. The contest will be preceded by a short discussion of ancient rhetorical techniques and delivery strategies. Students who can incorporate any of these techniques, even just a little, will receive extra credit in the judging of the performances.

            As in years past we will have lunch in campus cafeterias and offer an optional campus tour, after which our own Dr. David White will direct some current Baylor students in an English performance of a Plautus comedy. Dr. White has extensive experience in theater, and always puts on a high-quality, highly-entertaining play. We will conclude the day with the final rounds of certamen, wrapping up with some awards at around 3:15 pm.

            Schools arriving on Thursday night can contact Mr. Koby Westbrook (254-710-1399 or for hotel recommendations and phone numbers. Our beloved Thelma Mathews retired last year, but we are very happy to have Koby on board. He has been a great addition to our department. Hotel costs are not included in the registration fee. The registration fee for all participants is $15/student, which should be postmarked by October 11, 2019. The fee covers lunch and a Latin Day t-shirt.

            We always enjoy the ride at Latin Day. Whether you’ve come before to Latin Day, or if you attended JCL last Spring, or if you’ve never been on campus, we hope you will join us for the fun on October 18.



Dan Hanchey

Associate Professor and Undergraduate Program Director of Classics, Baylor University


Steps to Prepare for Latin Day:

- submit registration form (with certamen team if applicable)

- prepare creative project

- bring release forms on Latin Day (provided upon registration)


Registration Form

Department of Classics

Morrison 333
One Bear Place #97352
Waco, TX 76798

(254) 710-1399