Consider the two English expressions:
- He made a strong machine. (He built a machine, and the machine is a strong one.)
- He made the machine strong. (There was a pre-existing machine but it was not strong enough, so he improved it.)
How should I express the second kind of thing in Latin when I want to avoid interpretations of the first kind? My intuition is to go with facere for both, with a slightly different word order:
- Machinam fortem fecit.
- Machinam fecit fortem.
However, as the word order is quite free in Latin, the distinction is not clear enough. I would probably interpret the Latin phrases 1 and 2 both to mean the same as the English phrase 1.
It is quite possible that the best choice of words depends on context, but I am looking for an overall strategy for expressing the second English phrase. Perhaps there is a verb for turning something into something, which could be used with adjectives and does not have the connotation of producing a new item?