Questions tagged [grammar-choice]

When asking which choice (case, tense, mood etc.) is grammatical in a given situation, use this tag.

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14
votes
2answers
549 views

What is the difference between -us and -io?

One can derive nouns from verbs by attaching -us or -io to the perfect participle stem. For example, movere gives rise to motus (fourth declension) and motio. The meanings of these derived words are ...
9
votes
2answers
224 views

The difference between coniunctivus and imperativus when expressing commands

What is the rule for choosing coniunctivus or imperativus when expressing commands? I know, that imperativus has only second person forms, so one is forced to use coniunctivus for other persons. Are ...
11
votes
1answer
362 views

Memento quod <subjunctive>

(A tangent off of a question and comment by David Charles.) This verse from roughly the ninth century: Memento rerum conditor, Nostri quod olim corporis Sacrata ab alvo Virginis Nascendo ...
8
votes
1answer
230 views

When to use a genitive pronoun instead of a possessive adjective

The genitive form of the personal pronouns (e.g. mei, tui, nostri, nostrum, etc.) seem to occur fairly often in the following contexts: Partitive genitive: to indicate a part of some whole. Quis ...
3
votes
0answers
83 views

Is active periphrastic conjugation compulsory in consecutio temporum?

There is a rule which I have learned to know and love by the name consecutio temporum, and it governs the tense of a conjunctive predicate in (many) subordinate clauses. All three Latin Grammars I ...
3
votes
1answer
74 views

Stem for derivatives like figura, statura and cultura

I learned in a recent question that derived nouns like figura, statura and cultura do not always look like the future participle but are actually formed from a different stem. Examples of differences: ...
4
votes
2answers
161 views

On the (typical?) ambiguity of “Porta clausa est”

It is often said that Porta clausa est can have two readings depending on the categorial nature of the participle: verbal (cf. clauditur/clausa est) or adjectival (cf. clausa est/clausa fuit), which ...
3
votes
1answer
147 views

Ordinal adjectives for single things modifying plural noun?

To refer to "the first and second chapters", do I say: capitula prima et secunda or: capitula primum et secundum?
9
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1answer
331 views

Difference between Vocative and Accusative usage

What is the grammatical difference between saying something like Bonam Fortunam (in the accusative) and Bona Fortuna (in the vocative) to another person? I have always heard the former, and I do not ...
7
votes
1answer
477 views

Choosing between the prefixes e- and ex-

Before a consonant on can use either version of the prepositions e/ex. Both seem to appear in prefixes as well, but ex- is often assimilated. It seems that, for example, words beginning with F take ex-...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Is the phrase professor emerita grammatically correct?

Since professor has masculine gender, one may think that the phrase should be professor emeritus, regardless of the gender of the person referred to. Is the use of emerita simply a case of grammatical ...
6
votes
3answers
275 views

What is the difference between present and perfect conjunctive in hesitation?

I recently said this in our chat room: Ita crediderim, sed certus non sum. A brief discussion ensued about my choice of tense. I wanted to express hesitation, and my gut feeling says that the ...
5
votes
1answer
69 views

Is “nolī esse” grammatical?

In the Vatican's Nova Vulgata, Ecclesiastes 7:16-17 reads as follows: Noli esse nimis iustus neque sapiens supra modum! Cur te perdere vis? Ne agas nimis impie et noli esse stultus! Cur ...
5
votes
1answer
105 views

Does using quippe in a relative clause require conjunctive?

One can insert the particle quippe in a relative clause to give it a causal or otherwise explaining tone.1 Does quippe require using conjunctive in the relative clause? If not, are there some rules ...
10
votes
1answer
863 views

When to use cum + subjunctive and when cum + indicative

So I have never, ever, ever been able to grasp fully any explanation in any textbook of when to use "cum" with the subjunctive and when to use it with the indicative, because the examples they give ...
8
votes
2answers
185 views

Latin for English “has been” + adjective?

I'm trying to say in Latin, "Our garden has been full of junk for three years" and I can't figure out what tense to put the verb in. In English, "has been" expresses present tense with perfective ...
4
votes
3answers
688 views

How do I say “this must not happen”?

I'm used to translating English auxiliary "must" with a Latin gerundive: hic necandus est "this man must be killed". But what if I want to say "this man must not be killed"? I would read non necandus ...
12
votes
1answer
160 views

How to form the plural of “noun plus noun in possessive case”?

I would like to know what are the rules to form the plural of a noun plus a noun in possessive case. I am not sure if this is a correct description of what I am interested in let me give an example. ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the correct way to say “Noctis Avem”?

I'm looking to use "Night bird" as a name or title for something. I don't know which, if any, of the following would be correct: Noctis Avem Avem Noctis Avis Noctem Avem nox etc. What rules come ...
11
votes
1answer
270 views

What is the difference between accusative and genitive with meminisse?

The verb meminisse can take an accusative or a genitive object. Also other constructions are possible (see the entry in L&S), but I want to focus on comparing these two in classical Latin. Are ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Why *In medias res* and not *In media res*?

Wikipedia gives literal translation as: Into the middle of things. As far as I am aware into – in takes accusative. Plural accusative of medium seems to be media, not medias Even if I am ...
7
votes
1answer
93 views

Constantis vs. constantes et similia

Following up on @brianpck's suggestion in this question: In this passage: Maxume vero sunt admirabiles motus earum quinque stellarum quae falso vocantur errantes; nihil enim errat quod in omni ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

How do you convert a noun to an adjective in Latin?

I'm thinking that a houseguest who stays on your couch should be something like hospes lectuli. But that sounds more like a guest invited by your couch, which is silly. In my non-expert understanding ...
6
votes
2answers
612 views

Walking “hand in hand”

How can I translate the sentence "We are walking hand in hand" in Latin? I am not sure how to render "hand in hand". A direct translation would be Ambulamus manus in manu. But can I use a nominative ...
6
votes
1answer
83 views

Singulae aut unae scopae?

Tuomo Pekkanen's grammar (§92.1) explains how to express the number of something that is expressed by a plural-only word. Numbers greater than one are expressed with bini, trini etc. but a single one ...
6
votes
1answer
66 views

Does 'concrescere' take dative?

I wonder is 'rigido rostro' here in dative or ablative? Under "Dative and verbs compounded with prepositions" (Gildersleeve & Lodge) it is said, that " Many verbs compounded with the prepositions ...
3
votes
2answers
150 views

When should the perfect tenses be used?

No matter the language, it seems as if the perfect tenses (except for the future perfect) can be replaced with the imperfect. In translation, why do these sets of tenses have different meaning? I don'...
12
votes
2answers
425 views

Does Latin have a mechanism to disambiguate possessive pronouns of the same gender referring to distinct persons?

Question: does Latin have a grammatical mechanism to disambiguate the ambiguous use of `his' in the third of the three following English sentences? Person A wrote a book. Then person B wrote a ...
10
votes
2answers
256 views

How do I specify how many “litterae” or “castra” there are?

Certain words in Latin have a special meaning in the plural, which is often translated with the English singular. One obvious example of this is litterae, -arum, which means, "a letter." Litteras, ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

Is the complement of esse in nominative or accusative when esse is a subject?

Suppose I want to say something like "I like being a human". There are undoubtedly several ways to phrase that in Latin, but I want to do it so that it the subject is "to be a human". The complete ...
10
votes
1answer
935 views

Genitive vs Ablative of Price

In Latin, worth or value can be expressed by the genitive or by the ablative. Here are some examples: Genitive Non pono utrique par pretium: pluris aestimo beneficium quam iniuriam. (Sen Ep. Mor. ...
10
votes
2answers
407 views

How to answer a question?

Respondere looks like a good verb for answering, but how can I say "to answer a question"? I failed to find an answer by looking at dictionaries. These options come to mind: quaestionem respondere in ...
9
votes
1answer
151 views

Can -c replace -que in other words than atque and neque?

The enclitic -que in the words neque and atque can be shortened to produce nec and ac. Are there other instances where -que can turn into -c? Can this be productive, or can it only happen in very ...
9
votes
2answers
628 views

Is it acceptable/regular to use diacritics (macron) in written texts?

I'm building the brand for a web development company, and I'm using Latin for the name and slogan. However, as I am not familiar with the language, I would like some help clarifying meanings to avoid ...
9
votes
1answer
167 views

Usage of adjective solus

I'm trying to translate the sentence "The whole state was thanking this man's brother alone." (that is, the brother the only one being thanked) My try is: Tota civitas fratri huius soli gratias agebat....
8
votes
2answers
135 views

When was the dual number used in Attic Greek?

I have only studied the very basics of Greek years ago, so the question might be simple, but I couldn't find a clear summary anywhere. Attic Greek has a dual number alongside singular and plural. When ...
8
votes
2answers
125 views

How to decline a business name that is a Latin sentence?

Suppose there were a podiatry practice named Pes Integer Sit. How would you put this into a complete sentence? Do you simply treat it as indeclinable? For example, would "I am going to Pes Integer ...
8
votes
1answer
86 views

How to describe ministers in Latin?

I want to talk about different ministers in a government in Latin. Minister and ministra are good words for a minister, but how to say "minister of justice and employment" and "minister of economic ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Alea iacta est, plural version?

I was thinking about the famous Phrase "alea iacta est", and I was wondering: how would be the plural version of it? I thought about ALEAS IACTA SUNT Because aleas needs to be in the accusative ...
8
votes
2answers
130 views

Is there a difference between the future participle and the supine accusative?

The purpose of motion can be expressed in several ways. For example, I would consider the following essentially equivalent (did I forget something?): Ille me salutatum Romam venit. Ille me ...
8
votes
1answer
142 views

Comparison of Adjective to Noun

My friend wrote this fake holy scripture passage for his nation's religion on NationStates, and I have been translating it into Latin, as any proper fake holy scripture should be. I came upon one part ...
7
votes
1answer
795 views

Reference with hic, is and ille

Consider this example: Ecce Marcus et Gaius. Hic canit, ille auscultat. Here are Marcus and Gaius. The latter sings, the former listens. When there are two or more things one could refer to, hic ...
7
votes
1answer
87 views

When did the infinitive of purpose arise?

In Classical Latin, purpose would normally be expressed with ut, or ad with a gerund, or a supine with a verb of motion, or numerous other ways. However, in later and vulgar Latin (most notably the ...
6
votes
1answer
244 views

When can the gerund take an object?

Typically the gerundive is employed when one using a gerund with an object seems possible. For example, I have understood that aqua bibenda est and rei faciendae causa are preferable to aquam bibendum ...
5
votes
1answer
81 views

Translation verification

I’m wondering whether my translation is correct. I wrote: tempus fugit; sed muscae fugiunt etiam. I meant for this to mean: Time flies, but flies fly too. I really don't have any knowledge ...
5
votes
4answers
228 views

Why use nominative in Coniugatio periphrastica passiva?

Why do we use the nominative case in this example: Liber legendus est. = The book needs to be read. If liber is a direct object, then why not put it in accusative?
5
votes
2answers
82 views

A range of chapters

How do you grammatically denote a range of chapters, like what I'm trying to do in this sentence? Ecce in hac pagina vox Iohannis Ørbergii capitula prima usque decima Linguae Latinae Per Se ...
4
votes
0answers
124 views

Are causal relative clauses stylistically preferred to causal clauses?

In Latin a relative clause can be causal and the causal nature can be emphasized with quippe, ut, utpote or praesertim. A causal relative clause can always be replaced with a causal clause, but not ...
4
votes
1answer
149 views

Nested genitive?

I just said this to a friend: Ecce in hac pagina vox Iohannis Ørbergii capitula a primo usque ad decimum Linguae Latinae Per Se Illustratae legentis: https://sites.google.com/site/...
2
votes
3answers
147 views

Mihi legendum/legenda est?

I've another question about Coniugatio periphrastica passiva. If I'm a girl and I wanted to say I need to read, would it be: Mihi legendum est. Or Mihi legenda est. So, does the gerundivum ...