Growing up, we had in our library a book on the ancient Greek language. More than once I read through the introductory pages, on the history and flow of the Greek language through the centuries. Later years I knew a woman who did read and speak Homeric Greek. She reads as much of the ancient classics in Greek as she can manage, and does recitations of the Iliad in Greek.
While always fascinating, going back even to my childhood, I never did study an ancient language.
Did it for 4 years at high school in the late ‘60s, in the Scottish education system it was compulsory at our level. We all felt it was a real grind, and questioned its relevance in the modern world. Right after my last Latin exam (1970), I went out into the backyard and burned my books.
But 50 years later I’m glad we did it. Quite apart from opening a window into the classical world, it taught us intellectual discipline, gave us a grounding to help with learning the “romance” languages, (Italian, Spanish, French etc), and introduced us to logical language structure (in later years that helped me with Chinese).
On a lighter note, our Latin teacher Mrs M (also house mistress for my school “house”), looked and sounded just like Hogwarts’ Professor McGonagall, except that she didn’t wear the pointy hat ( but we _knew_ she was a witch!)
Did 5 years latin at school ...it started to become pretty difficult inthe last year with the study of poetry like De Natura Rerum or Aeneis (only some extracts of course), but I remember being very very impressed to be able to study some texts from Caesar or Cicero very quickly ...of course studying classic latin gives for the whole life an incomparable cultural background , at least for a French...too bad I did not learn classic Greek.