What is the natural way in which to derive verbs from nouns, where their meaning is to furnish something with the thing named by the noun? For example, what might one call an omega furnished with an iota subscriptum, if we wished to add only a participle; an omega iotatum? Or would this rather mean an omega turned into an iota?


If we are looking for a verb, I think your suggestion of iotare is actually a very good one. You observe that iotare might mean several other things(*) like making a iota or becoming a iota(in the passive (**)), which is apparently correct indeed, but that's how verbs work; they might mean different things and IMO we should not be deterred by this.

We can take the highely relevant example of the verb corono which is derived from the noun corona per Wiktionry, it might mean several things, but among them the required meaning:

to furnish with a garland or crown, to crown, wreathe (L&S dictionary)

(*) We might consider two examples: corporo (from corpus) and radio (from radius), it seems that corporatus is more of the meaning of "turned into a body"(as the active is rather to "form a body"), but with the case of radiatus the meaning is rather "shining" or "furnished with radia" (e.g. corona radiata white matter in the brain). But even corporo means according to L&S "to furnish with a body" which, as previously the body was not existing, is almost identical to fashion into body

(**) For the active meaning to become a iota, it can be argued that a better suggestion would be iotabesco, i.e using the suffix -sco, like rubesco.

But if we only need "participle" or adj. I second @Asteroides, just to add another example manubriatus (furnished with a handle (manubrium)), where, again, it seems there is no verb; one may claim, as suggested in your comment, that those example are participles of defective verbs, but I find no problem with that as long as the meaning is clear.

  • 1
    Two remarks on your invented verb iotabesco. Note that b is part of the root of the verb you mention next: rubesco. Note also that unprefixed verbs formed with the suffix -sco are typically atelic (i.e. they do not involve a culmination, whereby the typical paraphrase "to become X" is often not accurate, as pointed out by Haverling (2000, 2010)). The telic verbs with suffix -sco are the ones that are prefixed. The authoritative reference on this subject is Haverling (2000), mentioned in latin.stackexchange.com/questions/8848/aret-aridus-est ). – Mitomino Nov 21 '20 at 16:56
  • As for why denominal verbs involving the so-called "locatum object" paraphrase 'to provide X with Noun' (e.g., iotare as 'to provide X with iota'), are typically unprefixed, see latin.stackexchange.com/questions/13310/… – Mitomino Nov 21 '20 at 16:59
  • 1
    Finally, rather than saying that manubriatus or dentatus are "participles of defective verbs" (the label "defective verb" is misleading here, I think), it's better to say that they are "stative participles", which lack a verbal eventive layer (that's why these participles behave like "simple" adjectives). See my answer to Asteroides based on Embick's (2004) tripartite typology of participles (1) eventive passive // 2) resultative // 3) stative). – Mitomino Nov 21 '20 at 17:18
  • 1
    For the reasons mentioned above I think that the use of a -sco verb like iotasco would not work here. If Haverling is right (and I think she is), this invented verb would mean an ongoing process (atelic reading) rather than 'to become a iota' (telic reading). According to her, note that rubesco does not mean 'to become red' (telic reading) but rather 'to grow red' (atelic reading). – Mitomino Nov 21 '20 at 18:30
  • 3
    The use of prefixes with -sco verbs is determined by the aspectual phase you want to focus on (e.g. ad- and in- for the initial/ingressive phase, per- for the medial/progressive phase and ex- for the final/egressive one). All these options sound odd to me when applied to iotare. – Mitomino Nov 21 '20 at 18:34

There is a suffix -atus that forms adjectives with this kind of meaning. Like English -ed, it looks the same as a common past participle ending, but the words are not actually past participles: no corresponding finite verb is necessarily in use.

For example, dentatus means “toothed” in the sense of “having teeth”; it is not a participle meaning “having been toothed”, and no Latin verb dento, dentare exists to my knowledge.

  • I don't see how you can infer from the fact that no other forms are in (recorded) use that they are not participles. Noone speaks of toothing either, but it seems obvious (to me at least) that toothed is a participle (of a highly ``defective'' verb). – Nullus Maximus Nov 20 '20 at 7:56
  • @NullusMaximus As for your point "but it seems obvious (to me at least) that toothed is a participle", note that Asteroides is not saying that dentatus is not a participle. What s/he is saying is that "it is not a participle meaning 'having been toothed". In linguistic terms, what Asteroides is saying is that dentatus is not an eventive passive participle. In Embick's (2004) terminology dentatus is a stative participle, which has a clear adjectival behavior. Cf. ling.upenn.edu/~embick/result.pdf – Mitomino Nov 21 '20 at 17:26

There is the Greek ending -ιζω, which is still productive in English as the ending -ize/-ise, and which one could certainly latinize into -izo (with a "foreign" letter Z), or into -iso or -ico. Of course, most of the verbs you'd derive in that way would be neologisms.

  • I was wondering to what extent verbs with the suffix -izo can have the so-called "locatum object" paraphrase mentioned by the OP above ('to furnish something with the thing named by the noun'). It seems to me that the verbs you mention do not form "locatum verbs" (i.e. 'to furnish something with X') but rather change of state verbs where the noun is expressing the final state (i.e. 'to make something to be converted into X'). Finally, it is perhaps worth pointing out that this suffix forms Result verbs from Late Latin onwards (NB: in Early and Classical Latin this suffix formed Manner verbs) – Mitomino Nov 21 '20 at 18:47

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.