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19 votes
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Descriptive example of Cicero's style

The first example that comes to my mind is the beginning of the Second Catilinarian: Tandem aliquando, Quirites, L. Catilinam furentem audacia, scelus anhelantem, pestem patriae nefarie molientem, ...
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17 votes
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Would it be good Classical Latin style to always use the preposition "ab" and never "ā"?

I believe that would be considered very odd. Before certain words, ab is almost never used by any author. Consider for example *ab te, which is found 0 times in the Hewlett-Packard repository. If you ...
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13 votes
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Why is Cicero considered the best Latin prose author?

One of the best and earliest extant comments about Cicero's eloquence is found in Quintilian's Institutiones Oratoriae. Therein, he delivers a defense of the claim that Cicero bests any other Latin ...
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12 votes
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Why are *De Bello Africo* and *Hispaniensi* not believed to have been written by Julius Caesar or Hirtius?

As you note from the Wikpedia articles, the scholarly consensus is that Caesar did not write these works. The Loeb Classic Library edition to these works and one other (Alexandrian War. African War. ...
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12 votes
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Help translating an Estee Lauder quotation to Latin

It's not even close. Of the words, only numquam is the right word. As good as Google Translate is for other languages, it's not good at all for Latin. A quick and dirty translation would go something ...
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8 votes

Descriptive example of Cicero's style

Hic enim dies vobis, patres conscripti, inluxit, haec potestas data est, ut, quantum virtutis, quantum constantiae, quantum gravitatis in huius ordinis consilio esset, populo Romano declarare possetis....
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7 votes

Would it be good Classical Latin style to always use the preposition "ab" and never "ā"?

Lewis and Short provide some guidance on the limitations of the pre-consonant use of ab: [ab] has become the principal form and the one most generally used through all periods—and indeed the only ...
6 votes

Would it be good Classical Latin style to always use the preposition "ab" and never "ā"?

Here is a relevant passage from the second-century (CE) grammarian Velius Longus: antiquos scimus et abs te dixisse: nos contenti sumus a te dicere. scimus ipsos et ab Lucio dixisse: nos observamus ...
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6 votes
Accepted

How is Hyginus's Latin problematic?

H. J. Rose points to two characteristics of Hyginus's Latin that are considered substandard: "Overworked" relative pronouns Poor translations from Greek Rose gives one example of the "monotonous use"...
6 votes
Accepted

Stereotypical Foreign-ness

Similar things do occur in Latin literature, though I know of none that were part of a general tendency of the kind in which you are interested. There are well-known illustrations of snobbery, some ...
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6 votes
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tense fluctuation in Latin narrative

The only guidelines I've seen that are related to this issue in any way aren't really about the switch to historic present per se. (Every discussion I've ever seen is in agreement that the historic ...
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6 votes

Was Classical Latin syntax complex on purpose?

I have no hard evidence to support this answer, but I guess that is somewhat inevitable as the question itself feels soft. But it is nevertheless a perfectly valid question, and I hope this answer can ...
5 votes
Accepted

Usage of nihil and nihilum

The distinction between nihil and nihilum is a very fine one which, no doubt, the Romans learned to apply instinctively. It causes hardly any difficulty in translating from Latin, but in writing ...
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5 votes
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"Once upon a time"

The embedded story in Apuleius, Metamorphoses IV.28–VI.24 (the so-called 'Tale of Cupid and Psyche') has elements of a fairy tale. It's referred to as belonging to the category of narrationes lepidae ...
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5 votes

Use of the chiasmus in Latin

Chiasms are mostly used in poetry and high rhetoric, for dramatic or or playful effect. What they do is emphasise the words that seem inverted, draw the reader or listener's attention. I would say the ...
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5 votes
Accepted

Should you repeat the same verb twice in a ὁ μὲν ... ὁ δέ construction?

There are several unrelated grammatical points here, which I'll take in the order in which they occur in your Greek sentence. Position of αὐτούς. The pronoun αὐτ- in its non-emphatic third-person use ...
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5 votes

How is Hyginus's Latin problematic?

Well, as I read more of Hyginus, I'm beginning to get a sense of at least some places where the Latin feels inelegant. For example, in "Parerga [Herculis]," he writes [Achelous] cum Hercule propter ...
4 votes

Conflict between form and content in ancient literature

Aestuans intrinsecus... is a set of fifty couplets by a medieval (1160) poet which purports to be a heart-felt confession but is in fact a boast to his patron. (Is he asking for forgiveness or ...
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4 votes
Accepted

A representative work of Ovid

So much the hardest part of your question lies in trying to select something representative of Ovid that I was tempted to reply 'everything and nothing'. Ovid was something of a poet's poet, which is ...
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4 votes
Accepted

About Spinoza's Latin

That's quite a leap in logic there. First, people learned Latin in Latin schools, so their style would take after their teacher's, not necessarily the zeitgeist. Second, just because something is ...
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4 votes

Garden path sentences in classical Latin

REGINAM NOLITE OCCIDERE TIMERE BONUM EST SI OMNES CONSENTIUNT EGO NON CONTRADICO - though that one is less about multiple meanings in one word, and more about multiple possible locations for a comma, ...
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4 votes
Accepted

Omitting a verb when it is the same for both parts of the sentence

Others can maybe add answers with more nuance, but I'll put it simply: You can repeat the verb, so avoiding repetition is not mandatory. Omitting a repeated word — verb or other — is a common ...
3 votes

Omitting a verb when it is the same for both parts of the sentence

I agree with the answer given by Joonas Ilmavirta, but want to add that as you begin to read texts, it is very common to confront very compressed syntax where verbs are shared with many different ...
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3 votes

Was Classical Latin syntax complex on purpose?

I offer three small additions to an excellent answer. First, Latin is like most Indo-European languages in that its syntax allows sentences with multiple subordinate clauses. Many other language ...
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3 votes

How does the Latin of these two translations of The Little Prince compare?

Regarding the issue of repetition of intellegit in your third point: There are several terms in Rhetoric for word repetition known to the ancients; the most general is Anaphora. Epizeuxis refers to ...
3 votes

Should you repeat the same verb twice in a ὁ μὲν ... ὁ δέ construction?

First of all you need to eliminate the article τοὺς, as ἀγαθοὺς is a predicative adjective with nominal value ("we believed that they were good friends" and not "We believed that they were the good ...
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3 votes
Accepted

which of these two translations is in better Latin?

I can't start from the Greek original but, as a translated piece, the first of these seems a bit mechanical, and I prefer the second for style (it's a little shorter, too). This edit has been a long ...
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3 votes

Can "si etiam" have the same meaning as "etiam si"?

I could find one example from the Vulgata: 1st book of Samuel, 23:23 (Regum I in Vulgata) Vulgata: Considerate et videte omnia latibula ejus, in quibus absconditur : et revertimini ad me ad rem ...
2 votes

Stereotypical Foreign-ness

Both Donatus and Quintillian have chapters in which they describe barbarisms, though the examples areshort, sometimes only one or two words. Donatus: Ars Major, translated Jim Marchand (pdf) lists ...
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