NJCL Convention Academic Tests and Sources

N.B. Items that are available from Teaching Materials and Resource Center of The American Classical League are linked directly to the online catalog.

A source is a reference used by the test writers, proofreaders, and the Academic Chair for judging the validity of questions and responses. Test writers, proofreaders, and the Academic Chair may also take into account modern scholarship as they see fit to determine the validity of responses.

The list of current NJCL Academic Test reference books and materials is as follows:


  • Seven sections, each with questions from mythology, Roman history and life, grammar, vocabulary, Latin derivatives, Greek derivatives and Reading Comprehension. See below for the sources. N. B. This contest is a good practice for lower level students for the decathlon, which is for upper level students.


  • There will be special awards for the persons making the highest scores in this contest. It will consist of 95 questions and five tiebreakers. Students who have completed fewer than two years of Latin at the high school level are NOT encouraged to enter this contest. Topics on the test are as follows: reading comprehension, grammar, vocabulary, Latin derivatives, Roman history, Roman life, Latin literature, mythology, Greek derivatives, and geography of the ancient world. See below for the sources. This will be a very rigorous contest. For further information contact Emily Lewis, Academic Contest Chair at academics@njcl.org




  • Amo, Amas, Amat and More, Eugene Ehrlich, Harper & Row, ISBN 0062720171

  • Latin for the Illiterati, Jon R. Stone, Routledge, B0122 from the TMRC

  • Latin Everywhere, Everyday, Elizabeth Heimbach

  • List of U.S. State Mottoes from Wikipedia


There is no single source for mythology. An answer should be verifiable in one of the

following books or in an original source. Questions based on a particular author's

variant version of a myth will be so stated: e.g., "according to Ovid" or "in


  • Classical Mythology (4th edition or later), Mark Morford and Robert Lenardon

  • Classical Mythology and More, Marianthe Colakis and Mary Joan Masello

  • Dictionary of Classical Mythology, Pierre Grimal

  • Dictionary of Classical Mythology, Jenny March

  • The Meridian Handbook of Classical Mythology, Edward Tripp


There is no single source for history. An answer should be verifiable in one of the

following books or in an original source. 

  • Chronicle of the Roman Republic, Matyszak, ISBN 0500051216

  • Chronicle of the Roman Emperors, Scarre, ISBN 0500050775

  • History of the Roman People, Heichelheim, Ward, & Yeo

  • A History of Rome, M. Cary and H. H. Scullard

  • A History of Rome, Sinnegen and Boak

  • The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2nd and 3rd editions

  • The Penguin Dictionary of Ancient History

  • Rome, An Archaeological Guide, Amanda Claridge, Oxford University Press, ISBN 0192880039


  • Most first and second year Latin texts, and historical atlases with maps of the Ancient Roman Empire and the Mediterranean world.

  • A Guide to the Ancient World, A Dictionary of Classical Place Names, Michael Grant, Wilson Company, ISBN 0824207424

  • A New Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome, L. Richardson, Jr., Johns Hopkins University Press, ISBN 0801843006

  • Rome, An Archaeological Guide, Amanda Claridge, Oxford University Press, ISBN 0192880039


LITERATURE (Advanced Level Only)

  • Crowell's Handbook of Classical Literature, Lillian Feder

  • The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2nd and 3rd editions

  • The Oxford Companion to Classical Literature, ISBN 0198661215

  • Latin Literature: A History, Gian Biagio Conte


  • The purpose of this contest is for students to gain an understanding of classical times through the art of the period.

  • The Art of Greece and Rome by Susan Woodford (ISBN 0521540372)

  • The Oxford History of Classical Art by John Boardman (ISBN 0192853376)


  • The test will consist of vocabulary, forms (identification, analogies etc), grammar (sentences, translations etc) and passage(s).

  • Suggested sources are:

  • Any elementary Greek textbook

  • Oxford Grammar of Classical Greek by J. Morwood (ISBN 0195218515)

  • Greek Grammar by H. Smyth (ISBN 0674362500)


  • No knowledge of the Greek alphabet is necessary

  • Greek-English Derivative Dictionary by R. Schaeffer (B103)

  • Dictionary of Latin & Greek Origins by Bob Moore and Maxine Moore (B113)

  • Latin and Greek in Current Use by Burriss and Casson (ISBN 0135249910)

  • James Greenwald has graciously allowed us to provide his Greek derivatives dictionaries for free: Greek Derivatives (PDF)


  • History of Greek Literature by Moses Hadas (ISBN 0231017677)

  • Oxford Companion to Classical Literature by M.C. Howatson (ISBN 0199548552)

  • Handbook to Life in Ancient Greece by Leslie Adkins and Roy Adkins (ISBN 0816031118)


  • From the Helladic Period up to the death of Alexander.

  • Ancient Greece from Prehistoric to Hellenistic Times by Thomas R. Martin (ISBN 0300084935)

  • Ancient Greece: A Political, Social and Cultural History by Sarah B. Pomeroy (ISBN 0195097424)

  • A History of Greece by J.B. Bury (ISBN 0333154932)


  • Latin 1/2, Latin I, Latin II, Advanced Prose (Levels III, IV, V, and VI)

  • Advanced Poetry (Levels III, IV, V, and VI)

  • Students of Levels III - VI may take ONE OR BOTH of the Reading Comprehension tests

  • On the Margin by M. Balme (ISBN 0199124000) is a good example for this competition.