Does "Dominus providebit" mean "The Lord will provide" or "The Lord provides"?
I once had a bit of an argument with a guy who studied Latin over that. It's an inscription that appears on the rim of some old Swiss coins that I have.
Latin Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, teachers, and students wanting to discuss the finer points of the Latin language. It only takes a minute to sign up.Sign up to join this community
The "b" in providebit indicates future tense, while the "i" which follows the "b" is a connecting vowel having no significance other than ease of pronunciation. So the word providebit literally means "He will provide", being the third person singular form of the verb. It is understood to be masculine, following the masculine form of the word Dominus, which is understood to be in the nominative case indicating that it is the subject of the sentence. The meaning is therefore understood as "The Lord will provide".