Questions tagged [syntax]

The tag has no usage guidance.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
7
votes
2answers
253 views

Can a predicate nominative ever be a different gender from the subject?

I want to say "My favorite animal is..." and then give the animal. But "animal" is neuter, so I'll end up with a predicate nominative that doesn't agree in gender with the subject! "Meum dilectum ...
3
votes
2answers
74 views

Active verb with future passive and perfect participle?

How does the active verb "veniunt" work with the word "consideranda"? Almost like a periphrastic? As I have translated below: "Ac initio quidem duo principalia decreta ante omnia consideranda ...
11
votes
1answer
167 views

Scope of negation with absolute constructions

In Latin and Greek, when a negator appears in an absolute construction (ablative absolute, genitive absolute), it is generally taken to negate the predicate within that construction: hostibus ...
10
votes
2answers
201 views

Is it “bene videtur” or “bonum videtur”? Adjective or adverb with verbs/copulae meaning “seem”

With verbs like "seem, appear", one sometimes uses an adverb to express how something appears ("she looked well"), at other times an adjective ("he seemed angry"). How did the Romans do it, ...
8
votes
0answers
87 views

On different expressions of partitivity in Latin

I was wondering whether there is any difference between the following partitive expressions in Latin: ūnus tribūnōrum and ūnus ex tribūnīs 'one of the tribunes' (cf. the so-called 'partitive genitive' ...
1
vote
0answers
59 views

Is an Ablative Absolute construction like “portā clausā” ambiguous in Early Latin?

As a follow-up question of two previous posts (cf. here and here), I was wondering if an Ablative Absolute construction like portā clausā is ambiguous in Early Latin as it is in Classical Latin. For ...
6
votes
1answer
93 views

Analysis of Dative in >>Confessions<<

In Caput VI Liber II Augustine wrote:"Quamvis mihi nondum fideli......" (Although I was not a Christian...) Here he used the dative case (mihi fideli). What's the dative case for? Why is it dative? ...
4
votes
1answer
46 views

Confessiones, sentence analysis

This is a sentence in Caput V, Liber II of Confessiones of Augustine: Cum interea non satageret idem pater qualis crescerem tibi. Here what's the case of qualis? According to the declension table it ...
2
votes
0answers
98 views

Are there “dominant relative clauses”?

As is well-known, the predicate of an AUC construction can be a participle (this is the typical case: e.g., Ab Urbe Condita, whose acronym "AUC" is often used to refer to this very peculiar (and, ...
3
votes
0answers
62 views

The longest Ablative Absolute construction attested in the Latin literature?

I was curious about the longest Ablative Absolute (AA) construction attested in the Latin literature. For example, the following one from Plautus has seven AAs juxtaposed (used by him to create a ...
5
votes
1answer
180 views

How to say: “X differs from Y by(in) Z”

I want to say something of this sort: The word "res" differs from the word "rex" by one letter. In "Lexicon totius Latinitatis" I saw under the term "dama": "[Dama] differt a capreis solis ...
4
votes
2answers
150 views

Using Participles in Latin Tenses

In English, we can communicate progressiveness of an action by combining a form of "to be" with a participle. For instance, "I am acting" is progressive, whereas "I act" is not. I am wondering about ...
3
votes
2answers
131 views

Infinitival impersonal passives

The impersonal passive is a familiar construction: Pugnatur. "There is fighting / people are fighting / etc." Pugnatum est. "There was fighting / etc." Here a finite passive verb is being used ...
2
votes
2answers
239 views

“Contra felicem vix deus vires habet” - Need advice on replacing the word “Felicem”

For context, this is for a tattoo I'd like to get but I want to make sure it's syntactically correct as best as possible. I think the phrase is a great one, however I would very much prefer it to be ...
5
votes
1answer
137 views

Can a “dative of agent” appear in an Ablative Absolute construction?

I was wondering to what extent the syntactic distribution of so-called “dative of agent” and that of “ablative of agent” is different. For example, besides appearing in verbal contexts (e.g., Proelium ...
0
votes
1answer
81 views

Asking a teacher for more (hopefully extra credit) homework

Salvete, Sodales! I'm a student in his second year of Latin study, but my class has been slow in reading our texts and I've been bored from the beginning. I want to ask my teacher to give me more ...
4
votes
1answer
143 views

In this passage, why verbo instead of verbum?

There's a phrase from the Gospel that's used in the liturgy -- "sed tantum dic verbo" [et sanabitur anima mea], "but only say the word" [and my soul shall be healed]. Why verbo (dative or ablative) ...
6
votes
1answer
259 views

Can Gerundives be predicates of Ablative Absolutes?

I was wondering if Gerundives, the verbal adjectives referred to as "future passive participles" by Latin grammarians, can appear as predicates of Ablative Absolute constructions. As is well-known, ...
2
votes
1answer
116 views

Gerundial arguments selected by verbs taking Genitive: e.g., “Memento moriendi”? “Me paenitet vivendi”?

As a follow-up of two previous questions on Latin grammar, I was wondering if examples like Memento moriendi (cf. Memento mori) and Me paenitet vivendi (cf. Me paenitet vivere) are also attested. ...
3
votes
2answers
53 views

Indirect questions and the passive subjunctive

How would you translate: "He asked if the the city had been captured?" Quaerit num civitatem captum esse? Here I am using an accusative (captum) plus infinitive (esse). Am I right? Thank you!
7
votes
2answers
72 views

Shuffling Latin sentences

So, I have heard an interesting claim about Latin, and I wonder how true it is. The claim is, given that Latin has declensions, you can shuffle words around and keep the sentence's meaning. Is that ...
5
votes
1answer
74 views

How do I name the individual parts of the lumbricals muscle of the foot in latin?

As we can see, Wikipedia lists the lumbricals muscle and tells us that the muscle contains four parts. I need to name all four individual parts of the muscle and their respective side in the body. I ...
8
votes
2answers
583 views

Where is the correct position to set right or left of muscle names for anatomical names?

Muscles and bones have Latin names as can be found on wikipedia. I need to name muscles and bones with their Latin name and I also need to specify if it's the left or the right muscle in the human ...
4
votes
0answers
60 views

Any material on so-called “inverse analysis” and “minimal pairs” to practice Latin grammar?

I was wondering if anyone could provide me with references on any online material (pdf, links, etc.) of Latin Grammar which can contain exercises based on so-called "inverse analysis" and "minimal ...
4
votes
1answer
137 views

What is the grammatical “logic” of ablative case in «Tuā et meā māximē interest tē ualēre» (Cic. Fam. 16.4)?

Assuming that ablative case is always a semantic case (see the typical lists of its associated meanings in Latin grammars), I was wondering if Latin speakers could still assign a synchronic more or ...
2
votes
1answer
109 views

What is the grammatical “logic” of impersonal constructions like “Me non solum piget stultitiae meae sed etiam pudet” (Cic. De Dom. 29)?

What is the grammatical "logic" of the impersonal construction with psychological verbs like pudet, piget, paenitet, taedet, miseret? (here is a short descriptive characterization of so-called “psych ...
5
votes
2answers
257 views

Null expletive objects in Latin? “Cariotae cum ficis certandum habent” (Plin. Ep. 1,8)

How is the gerundive construction to be analyzed in the following example? Cariotae cum ficis certandum habent. (Plin. Ep. 1,8) 'Dates have to fight with figs'. Could you please provide me ...
7
votes
3answers
262 views

Is this a question or an affirmation?

Reading the Digest (6th century, copy of 9th century), I find this sentence: Sed si plures servum percusserint, utrum omnes quasi occiderint teneantur videamus. One author who established the text ...
5
votes
2answers
752 views

The Purpose of “Natu”

Following on from the question "Using Genitive & Infinitive To Describe Characteristics"; Joonas (26/6/19): "adulescentis est maiores natu revereri." = "It is of a young person to respect his/ her ...
5
votes
2answers
564 views

Sentences with no verb, but an ablative

Sometimes I will run across sentences that have no verb, but there is an ablative and I am not sure about the right approach to assuming a verb. For example, in this 16th century sentence: Erat ...
4
votes
0answers
46 views

Greek: indirect discourse / sequence of moods after κελεύω etc.?

I'm wondering about the proper Greek translation of a sentence like: He ordered me to do whatever I wanted. This sentence has an indefinite relative clause (whatever I wanted) after a verb of ...
5
votes
2answers
225 views

What is the term for extremely loose Latin word order?

For a Latin-language artificial intelligence called Mensa Latina the user manual will need to discuss and therefore refer to the phenomenon in Latin prose where meaning comes from grammar and ...
10
votes
1answer
156 views

Omission of a repeated verb in second part of a μέν … δέ

This question is about the Greek equivalent of sentences like I do not fear the Greeks, but I do fear the Romans. Socrates didn't write dialogues, but Plato did. These sentences use or imply ...
5
votes
3answers
273 views

On the absence of impersonal passives of deponent verbs

In a previous post there's a discussion on an intriguing example of a passive construction of a transitive (allegedly) deponent verb: Ab amīcīs hortārētur (Did Latin have any ergative verbs? ). The ...
3
votes
1answer
83 views

Syntax of Ille: “numquam est ille miser cui facile est mori”

What is the syntax of ille in the sentence: "numquam est ille miser cui facile est mori"? I get that cui is indirect object, but what is the function of the demonstrative pronoun ille in the sentence?
4
votes
2answers
81 views

Why the placement of the verse break between John 7:21-22?

I've been slowly working my way through the Gospel of John translating from the Greek. Coming to John 7:21-22, I am a bit stumped as to why editors have placed sentence and verse breaks where they ...
6
votes
2answers
147 views

When are -ns words used with accusative direct objects?

In English, one common generalization is that "-ing" words only take direct objects when they are verb forms, not when they are true adjectives or true nouns. (There are only a few possible exceptions,...
3
votes
2answers
66 views

On the use (or not) of genitive in some verses of the Vulgata

I'm a bit puzzled with some verses of the Vulgata, regarding the use or not of genitive. Consider 3 Regnum (1 Kings in non LXX-based bibles). Verses 13-15 in Chapter 10 go as follows: [13] Rex ...
4
votes
1answer
129 views

How do postpositions fit into Latin syntax?

In a comment on this answer, luchonacho comments that tenus is a preposition taking the genitive; this seemed odd to me, since I'd never considered tenus anything akin to a preposition. Tenus seems ...
2
votes
1answer
256 views

Subject-verb agreement when the subject is a dominant participle construction

My question is whether constructions similar to the following English one, which is drawn from Jespersen (1909-1949, vol. V: 138), can exist in Latin, i.e., constructions where (i) the subject is ...
8
votes
1answer
193 views

How complex a motion event can be in Classical Latin

How natural would you judge the translation of the following English sentence into Latin? He still wandered on, out of the little high valley, over its edge, and down the slopes beyond. '...
5
votes
2answers
252 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 ...
5
votes
0answers
133 views

Why can’t we wipe the slate clean in Latin?

After reading Luchonachos’ previous post, whose Latin text contains an adjectival resultative predicate (claudus effectus est ‘he became lame’), the following question came to my mind: Why is it the ...
6
votes
3answers
252 views

Quo mortuo nuntiato (Cicero) // Ab urbe condita nuntiata (?)

Given my description below on nested/double predicative participle constructions (e.g., quo mortuo nuntiato) and given the well-known parallelism between so-called “dominant” participle constructions (...
4
votes
1answer
178 views

Latin usage & perfect passive finite verb forms

I understand that a perfect passive finite verb is formed by combining the perfect passive participle with the correct form of 'esse'. My question is this: Does it ever happen that the second ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Could we say “dies mirabilis” as we say “annus mirabilis”?

"Annus mirabilis" is an expression which refers to a wonderful year like 1905 for A. Einstein and modern physics. What would be the equivalent for a single day? Is "dies mirabilis" the correct form? ...
7
votes
1answer
617 views

Making a strong machine vs. making a machine strong

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 ...
1
vote
1answer
41 views

Need translation Please of: Promissary of the future

Dear Translation Helpers, Could you please help me translate "Promissary of the Future" into true Latin? I have looked the words up, but they don't seem to make sense as the syntax is different and I ...
6
votes
1answer
100 views

Can “quam” be used as a mere intensifier to a superlative?

In a question about Augustine, this quotation is given: Frustra itaque nonnulli, immo quam plurimi, aeternam damnatorum poenam et cruciatus sine intermissione perpetuos humano miserantur affectu, ...
7
votes
1answer
127 views

When and where to use which construction expressing purpose

To the best of my knowledge, the following constructions are used to express purpose in Latin: ut + [subjunctive clause] ad + [accusative gerund] ad + [accusative gerundive] + [accusative noun] [...