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Questions tagged [example-request]

For questions that ask for an example of usage of a particular word or construction, either artificial or from literature.

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Can “libella maris” be “sea level”?

I came across the expression libella maris in a scientific text from 19th century. There are many ways to parse it in the context, and one option that occurred to me is that maybe it stands for "sea ...
7
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1answer
515 views

“There is” in Latin

In English you use the phrasal verb there+[to be] to mean something different than just an object being placed somewhere visible or known to the speaker and/or listener (i.e., there). According to ...
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2answers
77 views

Are the pronoun-looking forms of quire attested?

The verb quire is conjugated like ire, and there are some forms that look like an interrogative or relative pronoun. Those forms are quīs and quī. Are these attested in classical ...
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1answer
74 views

Is the nominative gerund attested?

I'd always heard that the gerund had no nominative, with the present active infinitive taking the place of the missing form: volāre difficile est, rather than *volāndum. However, in the comments on ...
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1answer
74 views

Vocative Gerund

I am 99.9999% confident there is no purpose for a vocative gerund. Yet nothing seems to specifically disallow for such a construction. In theory something such as "odi te currendum" (in English, "I ...
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2answers
74 views

Irreal condition expressed by a prepositional phrase

In English one can say: Without you I would not be here. This is roughly the same thing as: If you had not helped, I would not be here. The exact wording depends on context. In the second ...
8
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1answer
76 views

Garden path sentences in classical Latin

A garden path sentence is a sentence that leads the reader astray and forces them to reanalyze. The obvious first interpretation when one starts reading is a red herring and it comes clear that the ...
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0answers
80 views

Comparison of participles

Participles behave much like adjectives. Do they also have comparative and superlative forms? They are easy enough to form: ferentior, dicturissimus. More precisely, are any comparatives or ...
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1answer
102 views

Has any Latin literature survived through the Arabs?

Some pieces of Greek literature have survived only through the Arabs. But is there any classical Latin literature that has survived the same way? This could mean translations from Latin to Arabic and ...
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1answer
58 views

How has literature helped archaeology?

Is there a good example case where extant ancient literature has helped understand archaeological findings? This could mean, for example, a Roman author mentioning a tool and its use, which has helped ...
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0answers
34 views

damnatio memoriae

The Wikipedia article on the subject notes that the term damnatio memoriae, referring to the relegation of a person's name to oblivion, as if they never existed, is a neo-Latin expression first ...
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1answer
62 views

Ancient plagiarism

I have no doubt that plagiarism existed in the Greek and Roman antiquity: some authors must have copied material more or less directly from others without attribution. (The moral requirement to cite ...
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1answer
65 views

Politically (in)correct Latin

I am looking for an example of a pair of adjectives or nouns (broadly defined) in classical Latin which mean the same thing but one is considered rude and the other one polite. I could list several ...
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215 views

Regular passive forms of “facere”

Have regular passive forms of the verb facere ever been used? If so, what is the first occurrence? In all of the Latin I have seen, the passive forms of facere are replaced by fieri. Regular passive ...
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1answer
57 views

What is the earliest Latin crossword puzzle?

I think it is safe to assume that there have been crossword puzzles in Latin, and I think I have seen some in textbooks as well. But what was the earliest Latin crossword puzzle? I do not mean word ...
8
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1answer
66 views

What was the first name of Christmas?

What was the first Latin word or expression used for Christmas, the Christian event in the honor of Jesus' birth? I know what to call Christmas in Latin, but it occurred to me that there is no ...
6
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1answer
91 views

Are there Roman examples of “of Rome” instead of “Roman”?

In my experience it is extremely common to say, for example, rex Romanus instead of rex Romae. In fact, I do not recall ever seeing a genitive when a local adjective can be used. Translating to ...
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44 views

Are there attested prohibition signs?

Are there preserved inscriptions or other such texts from ancient Rome that contain a prohibition? I would prefer original signs that have survived, but mentions in the literature are also interesting....
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2answers
87 views

Are there any instances of long oblique cases of Iuppiter?

The name Iuppiter is declined weirdly. It has otherwise regular third declension endings with the stem Iov-, but the nominative comes with the suffix -pater, producing Iuppiter. At least this is what ...
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2answers
1k views

Latin plural of Curriculum Vitae?

Curriculum vitae (often abbreviated CV) is a common Latin locution present in a high number of languages, including English. In English, as in other languages, how to pluralize these foreign ...
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1answer
379 views

Are there Latin puns? [duplicate]

This may seem like a lame question without much thought, and it really is, but did any (mainly Classical because we're all brainwashed into believing that this is the optimal stage of Latin, but other ...
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2answers
195 views

Did the Romans use war-dogs?

I was surprised a few days ago to find myself in an argument with a reputable historian about the Romans' use of dogs in war, which I dismissed as a fantasy — or possibly a mere misunderstanding of ...
6
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2answers
122 views

Classical example of homesickness

My dictionary translates "homesickness" as nostalgia or desiderium loci natalis, but the dictionary gives no source or era information. Both of these are understandable, but I haven't found classical ...
6
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1answer
91 views

Are there other perfect imperatives than memento?

I learned from this previous question about the semantics of memento(te) that memento(te) is not morphologically a future imperative. It turned to be a perfect imperative (semantically present), as it ...
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2answers
1k views

How did the Romans wish happy holidays?

The Roman year included many festive occasions. In today's world it is customary to wish merry Christmas, happy Easter, and other such things. Did the Romans do the same during their own festivals, ...
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1answer
223 views

Latinitas for other languages

Latinitas could be described as high quality Latin. If I want to refer to the same thing for other languages, can I use nouns like Graecitas, Anglicitas or Finnicitas? (I am not sure if Anglitas and ...
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2answers
520 views

The lowest form of humor

Many Ancient Greek jokes are preserved in the Philogelos, ranging from wordplay to stereotypical foreigners to utter nonsense. And certain epigrams from Lucillius and Argentarius contain excellent/...
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2answers
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Choosing conjunctive tenses in a clause subordinate to a subordinate clause

I will phrase my question through an example. Consider this sentence in English: I do not know whether you wrote where you are. This has one governing clause ("I do not know") and two indirect ...
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4answers
9k views

How did the Romans wish good birthday?

I know how to wish a happy birthday in Latin: Bonum diem natalem! (There are other options as well.) It just occurred to me that I do not recall coming across any ancient birthday congratulations. Do ...
5
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2answers
192 views

Sapiens: tasty or smart?

The verb sapere can mean tasting like something or having a sense of taste. The latter can be understood figuratively close to "to be wise or sensible". Dictionaries list the participle sapiens ...
2
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1answer
77 views

Deriving lactuca from lac

The word lactuca refers to lettuce, and Lactuca sativa is the scientific name. Some of the plants in this genus seem to contain some kind of milky liquid which must be the reason for deriving the word ...
5
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1answer
91 views

Conflict between form and content in ancient literature

I am looking for examples in ancient literature with conflict between form and content. I believe such conflict is typically satirical, but there may be other reasons as well. I would like to know in ...
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1answer
98 views

Synizesis in perfect tense 'ui'

Can synizesis happen when the perfect stem ends in 'u' and the ending starts with a short 'i'? For example, can the 'ui' in fuisti be synizesized1 into a diphthong? In my understanding the two vowels ...
10
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1answer
283 views

Victorum: victus or victor

The (masculine) plural genitive of both the participle victus and the derived noun victor is victorum. If I write, for example, uxores victorum infelices erant, it is unclear which wives were unhappy. ...
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1answer
162 views

Does the name take the same case as “appellatus”?

Consider the following sentence with a tentative Latin translation: Let us meet in the building called Taberna. Conveniamus in aedificio Taberna appellato. In which case should I decline the ...
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does there exist “valde <superlative>”?

Are there any examples in classical texts where the word 'valde' is used before a superlative? For example 'valde stultissimus' to mean very, very stupid.
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1answer
266 views

Is there an example where res publica is not republic?

The word res alone can mean state, and especially res publica means that (or republic). Looking at meanings of res and publicus, this is not the only possible translation of res publica, if no context ...
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2answers
733 views

Does the “re” in emails have an ancient origin?

The Latin ablative re has become a word in English, meaning "regarding" or "with reference to" or something along those lines. This is also used in emails as an automatically generated prefix "Re:&...
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1answer
349 views

Is there a John or Jane Doe in Latin?

In English, John Doe or Jane Doe is understood not to be an actual name of a person, but to be some kind of a placeholder name or mean an average citizen. There are many variants of this name in ...
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1answer
206 views

Can *ne* in *ne … quidem* mean *ne* instead of *non*?

In all examples I have seen, the ne in ne … quidem could be replaced with non alone, leaving out the quidem (thus changing the meaning from "not even" to "not"), and still make a grammatically ...
7
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1answer
330 views

Classical words for spelt

The Latin Wikipedia article about spelt mentions two ancient Latin names for spelt: spelta and scandala. I have found spelta used in more recent Latin, but nothing ancient. I have never seen scandala &...
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2answers
254 views

How to use apposition with vocative?

I am uncertain when to use nominative and when vocative in an apposition related to direct address. This issue is easiest to describe with examples. I have understood that the following use is correct:...
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2answers
3k views

Is there a plural of Jesus in Latin?

The name Iesus has peculiar declension in Latin. The declension of this word in every source that I have seen only gives singular forms. However, I can imagine situations where a plural is needed: a ...
6
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1answer
112 views

How to wear unusual clothing?

If I wear a toga, I can say toga me vestio/induo or toga vestior/induor or I could use the adjective togatus. For normal clothing it is clear what it means when I say that I wear it. I do not know, ...
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1answer
97 views

How to say “it's a question of” or “it's all about”?

How can I express something like the following sentences in Latin? Being a teacher is simple; it's a question of discipline. I don't care if I win or not; it's all about surviving. I can offer some ...
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2answers
184 views

Example sentences where different cases mean different things

Can you suggest example sentences where changing the case of one noun keeps the sentence grammatical but changes meaning? Preferably a noun in the same sentence could be used in all five main cases (...
13
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1answer
384 views

Can -que be attached to a word ending in -que?

Some Latin words end in -que (for example quinque, vocative of adjectives ending in -quus and imperatives like relinque), but I have never seen the conjunction -que attached to such words. Are there ...
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1answer
216 views

What are some examples of “subicio” being used to mean “submit, subject, present”?

In English, the epigraph of A Christmas Carol reads I have endeavoured in this Ghostly little book, to raise the Ghost of an Idea, which shall not put my readers out of humour with themselves, with ...
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112 views

How is Hyginus's Latin problematic?

Theoi.com avers that The poor quality of [Hyginus's] works lead most to believe they are either wrongly attributed to this distinguished scholar or are a later abridgement of his works composed by ...
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565 views

Are there any complete Latin inscriptions written in boustrophedon?

The Wikipedia entry for Lapis Niger mentions that the inscription was written in boustrophedon, alternating reading direction between every line. This inscription is far from complete. Are there Latin ...