Suburani is a new Latin course that looks at the ancient world with fresh eyes. Beginning in AD 64, it follows the stories of a diverse cast of characters from the Subura in Rome and their travels through the Empire. Suburani has been created to suit the curriculum of teachers internationally. In 32 chapters spread across two books it covers Latin I and Latin II (US) and prepares students for Latin GCSE (UK).

Each chapter of Suburani includes Latin stories, language notes and exercises, civilization text, and a history or mythology page. Each book can be taught in one to two years, depending on teaching time and students’ age. The book has been designed to be highly adaptable to a variety of pedagogies, age ranges and teaching times (see Pedagogy for more information).

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Visit the Textbook section to find out more about the content of the books, or find a full overview at the Curriculum maps. For full information on materials and pricing, head to the Order pages.

The characters and world of Suburani

At the heart of the course are the Latin stories, which follow the lives of a core cast of characters from the Subura: Sabina, a teenage girl who lives with her father Faustus and her aunt Rufina (a landlord in an apartment block and the owner of a bar, respectively) and the people enslaved in their household (Lucrio, Quartilla, and Quartilla’s young son Currax). Throughout the two books, people from across the Empire are met, of all ages and backgrounds, and from all levels of society to represent the diversity of the population and make the study of the ancient world relevant and engaging to students.


A teenage girl growing up in the Subura


Sabina's father, the landlord of an insula


Sabina's aunt who runs a bar in the Subura


A Roman veteran from North Africa and his British wife and child


A man from Moesia enslaved in the household of Faustus


Mother and son, enslaved in the household of Faustus


A wealthy young Roman


An elderly beggar on the streets of Rome


A perfume-maker and property owner in Pompeii


An escaped gladiator in Carthage


A widowed teacher from Egypt, living in Carthage

Digital learning

Extensive digital resources support the course, including a digital version of the book (the Activebook) which contains story explorers with clickable Latin displaying vocabulary and parsing (where desired), autograded translation activities, and an individualized vocabulary trainer, recording student performance for teachers to track. You can try out the first two chapters of each book for free, and learn more about the functionality of digital accounts in this video presentation.

Try it for free

Teacher support

Extensive support is available to help teachers deliver the course. Teaching notes are available for each chapter as pdf downloads, and include:

A wealth of resources has been created by the Hands Up team to accompany each chapter, including differentiated exercises, comprehension questions (in English and Latin), additional language notes, etymology activities and additional culture materials, to help teachers plan effective lessons. A range of online, freely accessible training videos cover topics such as the storyline of Suburani, the course’s approach to language teaching, or preparing for GCSE with Suburani.

A community of teachers

There is already a large (and growing) international community of Latin teachers using Suburani who share their resources and expertise. The Community Resources forum hosts hundreds of activities, lesson plans, worksheets, assessments and more, created by Suburani teachers working in a variety of settings. A dedicated Facebook group provides a forum for sharing experiences and ideas.

For further information, explore the sections of the website below. You can also download our brochure.

UK brochure US brochure

If you have any questions, you can schedule a chat with one of the team.

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