7

In Cicero's "ad Familiares" 12.10.2 there is:

"quem quidem ego exercitum quibuscumque potuero rebus ornabo;" =

"This army, indeed, I will compliment by all the means in my power." (Perseus)

Why isn't the accusative, (from "ornabo"), "this army", given as, (masculine) "hunc exercitum"; why use a relative pronoun, (masculine, accusative) "quem"? This, usually, introducing a relative clause would be deployed for something like, "The army (nominative) which ("quem") I will compliment". In this example, such translating does not apply and "the army" ("exercitus") is in the accusative, "exercitum", anyway.

How does "quem" work, here?

A secondary point: Shouldn't future-perfect, "potuero", be completed before the future, "ornabo", can be invoked? Here, they will occur together, inevitably?

1
  • 3
    On potuero and ornabo, I imagine an elided verb such as parare or collocare. Gathering the resources logically proceeds the outfitting. "I will outfit this army with whatever resources I will have been able (to amass)." Jul 10, 2023 at 17:26

1 Answer 1

8

This is very common. Relative pronouns are often used to introduce the next clause when the meaning is something like "et [is,ea,id]."

See Allen and Greenough:

When the antecedent is in a different sentence, the relative is often equivalent to a demonstrative with a conjunction: quae cum ita sint (=et cum ea ita sint), [and] since this is so.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

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