I was taught the way to say "yes" in Latin is two words: "ita vero". It seems counter-intuitive that it's two words, but why is that so? In essence, why is the Latin word for yes two words? Does "ita" mean something by itself and "vero" mean something by itself and somehow "ita vero" means yes? ~M.C.
In the English phrases
"Even so," "More so," or (historical) "Exactly so," 'so' = ita
Ita (adverb) so, thus,in this way.
(and also by itself)
ita C. In affirmations, esp. in replies, yes, it is so, just so, true: quid istic tibi negoti est? Dav. Mihin'? Si. Ita, Lewis & Short TUFTS
Where a bald and unconvincing monosyllable requires extra emphasis
and ita plane, 'clearly yes,' can be found in comedies and orations.
...and vero also, adverb from vērus , a, um, adj. (=true, real, actual) can also mean 'Yes,' by itself
B. vērō , in truth, in fact, certainly, truly, to be sure, surely, assuredly:
b. In corroborative replies, yes, certainly, by all means, assuredly, etc. (class.; while verum in this sense is only ante-class.): De. An quid est etiam amplius? He. Vero amplius, '...even more?' 'Yes, more.'(Terence)
Latin does not have a word "yes". There are other ways to express the same idea, like the English "exactly", "indeed", "very much so", and so on. From an English point of view, you need some kind of a circumlocution to say "yes" in Latin.
The common translation ita vero means "truly so". I would not say that this pair of words is yes, but that it can be used to convey the same message. Depending on context, you might say ita, est, consentio, volo, or something else. Thinking of ita vero as a direct and accurate translation of "yes" is misleading.
As an aside, the Italian and Spanish (and to an extent French) “si” come from “sic” (thus) while French “oui” Comes via a roundabout route from “hoc ille” (thus he).
It seems that Latin had quite a few affirmative idioms.