I would like to know which case follows after the phrase "praeparatio in" in the sense of "preparation in (expectation of)" in English, for example.

To use the above-mentioned example, would the correct Latin translation be "praeparatio in expectatione" or "praeparatio in expectationem"?

  • 1
    A quick classical corpus search only shows praeparatio ad + acc.
    – brianpck
    Jun 17 '17 at 15:21
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    I've found "carnis praeparatio in cura primae materiae Tartarae" and "praeparatio in calidam natura" used by Paracelsus and "praeparatio in homine" used by St. Thomas Aquinas. Unfortunately, I do not understand those quotes, so I cannot judge what is right, wrong or maybe simply Medieval Latin. This is the corresponding Google search to find those quotes: bit.ly/2rHPa3u
    – 126047281
    Jun 17 '17 at 20:06

You would use the ablative: in expectatione. It's not that it comes off of praeparatio, though, but rather is part of how in works with the ablative. Conceptually, you're "in the state of expectation," which is akin to an ablative of place. You can substitute praeparatio for anything else. Curro in expectatione praemii, "I run in expectation of a reward."

You prepare for something with ad. I understand your question implying that there's something to be prepared. More fully, then, you would have praeparatio ad aliquid in expectatione alicuius, "preparation for something in expectation of something."


As far as classical Latin is concerned, neither.

I went through the 28 occurrences of praeparatio (in any case) in a classical corpus, and I found only one case of "preparation for something" expressed with a preposition: Cicero, in Tusculanae Disputationes 3.30.9, uses praeparatio ad + accusative.

It appears to be more common to use genitive. For example, I would render "preparation for his arrival" as praeparatio adventūs eius. Also praeparatio ad adventum eius by analogy to Cicero is fine, but I find no support for preaparatio in with either accusative or ablative. See also the L&S dictionary entry for praeparatio.

However, this answer only applies to classical Latin. You commented that praeparatio in is indeed found in later authors but I don't know enough of later use to be able to comment on it.

As pointed out by C. M. Weimer in his answer, you can say praeparatio in expectatione alicuius for "preparation in expectation of something". This is not attested, but it appears to be a reasonable extrapolation from known classical material. However, to me this is not significantly different from praeparatio ad aliquid, "preparation for something". As always, the best choice depends on context. See his answer for a better discussion of this point.


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