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Questions tagged [third-declension]

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26 votes
1 answer
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Why do ablatives of the 3rd declension sometimes end on -e, at other times on -i?

Normally, substantive nouns of the 3rd declension get an -e in the ablative (patre), and adjectives of the 3rd get an -i (audaci). This is already odd: normally, substantives and adjectives, both ...
Cerberus's user avatar
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13 votes
1 answer
706 views

-eris, -oris, -uris?

Much to students' annoyance, nouns ending in -us can belong to either the second (servus), third (tempus), or fourth (circus) declensions. I understand the origin of the second and fourth: Proto-Indo-...
Draconis's user avatar
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12 votes
3 answers
686 views

Why does singular "mons" become plural "montes"?

Some singular third declension nouns, ending in -s, have a t in their stem, so: singular mons → plural montes infans → infantes miles → milites I understand these to be examples of "lingual" ...
Nathaniel is protesting's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
267 views

Plural dative and ablative of Greek neuters ending in -ma

There are several third declension neuters of Greek origin ending in -ma with genitive -matis. These have otherwise regular third declension forms, but the plural dative and ablative are often -ī...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
821 views

'Fomites'? From 'fomes'?

Of the many candidates for 'word of the year', 'fomites' is a semifinalist for sure (with the added flavor of multiple pronunciations). But why the dental '-t-' in the plural? What is the pattern? Is ...
Mitch's user avatar
  • 727
8 votes
2 answers
779 views

Choosing -ter or -iter for adverbs from third declension adjectives

The typical suffix to derive an adverb from a third declension adjective is -iter, but sometimes the -i- is dropped: dulciter but audacter. I am not asking for a rule for choosing -iter or -ter —...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why is "tyrannis" in "sic semper tyrannis" interpreted as "to tyrants"?

According to the declension in Wiktionary, tyrannis is a nominative or vocative singular form of tyrannis. So, I can see a literal translation "Thus always, Tyrant!" using the vocative. But &...
Spencer's user avatar
  • 173
7 votes
2 answers
973 views

What consonants can a noun stem end in?

As TKR mentions, third-declension nouns in Latin have stems ending with a consonant (*). Off the top of my head, I can think of stems ending in various different consonants: rex, for example, has a G ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 67.6k
7 votes
1 answer
148 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 ...
Ben Kovitz's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
275 views

How can you ascertain whether an apparently r-stem noun is actually s-stem?

Is there a way to ascertain whether a third declension noun ending in -r in the nominative and -ris in the genitive is r-stem or s-stem? BACKGROUND I understand that the s in some s-stem words has ...
Catomic's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
129 views

Genitives like "axeos"

I recently encountered a text written in Latin in Finland about two centuries ago using the form axeos. From context it was clear that it was a genitive, and it looks just like the Greek genitive of ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
200 views

How did vāti-s become vātēs?

To my understanding, vātēs "bard" started out as an i-stem noun, built on the stem vāti- (probably from something like *weh₂t-i-). So I would expect the nominative to look something like *vāti-s. ...
Draconis's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
385 views

Plura or pluria?

Before answering this recent question about the US motto, I had to check whether the neuter version of plures is plura or pluria. I had recalled right: plura appears to be indeed the sole form used in ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
209 views

How are "Arsaces" and "Gotarzes" declined, and why?

Declinatione nominum latinorum a nominibus graecis quae -ης finiuntur perturbor. Dictionarium L&S exhibet "Arsăces, is m." a nomine graeco Ἀρσάκης. (E in syllaba ultima de "Arsăces" longum esse ...
Asteroides's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
347 views

Adjectives that decline as consonant stems in the neuter plural nominative/accusative

From what I have read, most third-declension Latin adjectives other than comparatives take the i-stem endings -ī, ium and -ia in the ablative singular, genitive plural and neuter nominative/accusative ...
Asteroides's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
324 views

What is the general ablaut rule that explains examples like φρήν, πρόφρων, πρόφρονα?

Φρήν (midriff, will) gives rise to the adjective πρόφρων (eager, literally motivated by will). It looks to me like the -ων comes from ablaut applied to -ην. (It doesn't look like a suffix -ων, since ν ...
user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
807 views

Declining caput, capitis (3rd decl., neuter) as a starting student

Can somebody please point me in the correct direction so that I can understand why the following declension is done that way? The neutral noun "caput" came up in a correspondence course I am ...
Loves Math's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
158 views

Is -is the feminine singular nominative endings of third-declension adjectives with three or two nominative singular forms?

Learn to Read Latin says on p151 in Section 74 Third-Declension Adjectives: To find the stem of third-declension adjectives with three or two nominative singular forms, take the feminine singular ...
Tim's user avatar
  • 1,167
1 vote
1 answer
134 views

Is there an online tool for the declension of 3rd declension words?

I have a hard time remembering which words are attested with a -ium gentivie plural, which words can take an accusative in -im etc, so I was looking for an online tool to help me. The Olivetti ...
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