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Latin Roots: Teacher

by Aaron Fisher
(Los Angeles, CA)

Dear Latin Teacher,

How would I say "teacher" in Latin?


Dear Aaron,

The Latin word magister is used for the captain of a ship or the leader of a classroom. So it is often a good translation for school master.

Roman boys studied rhetoric under a doctor, meaning one who has been taught and now teaches. So the Latin root doctor means teacher, too.

A teacher in a grammar school for boys was called the grammaticus. He taught poetry, language, etc.

A praeceptor was one who taught by rule or system. We have the English derivative 'precepts', i.e. words to live (and learn) by.

Lastly, a professor is a public teacher, one who speaks to a crowd of students.

Hope this helps, and thanks for asking a Latin teacher.



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