elduce wrote:I understand the other cases but the genitive gives me a lot of trouble.
What does this read:
Virorum nostrorum magnorum animos curae bella superabant.
Of the men of our of the greats...I wish Wheelock had spent more time explaining each case.
"of men" is a noun; nostrorum
"our" and magnorum
"great" are both adjectives, do not translate magnorum
as though they were nouns. Both adjectives agree with the same noun, so together the three words mean "of our great men". I am not sure your confusion was with the genitive so much as agreement of adjectives - perhaps it would be best to brush up on that area of the chapter.
I have trouble firstly because I can't figure out the 'curae bella' relation and secondly that three word genitive phrase.
The easiest way to figure out the meaning at this point is to determine the subject and direct object (the verb, superabant
, should be obvious):
There are two candidates for direct object, animos
, since either could be accusative. However, animos must be accusative
, therefore it is the direct object.
There are also two candidates for subject, curae
, since either could be nominative as well as plural (to match the plural verb). bella
can only be accusative or nominative, and since the accusative spot in this sentence is already taken by animos
cannot be accusative; therefore bella
is nominative and the subject.
Now, perhaps I am overlooking something, but this sentence appears odd to me. The sentence is fine so far, except this curae
still exists. curae
could be nominative plural, genitive singular, or dative singular. We can cross off nominative plural since we already know the subject is bella
, but of the other options neither one makes much sense. Assuming there are no typos here, curae
must mean "of care" or "for care". It would make more sense if it read curae belli
"concerns of war" or just cura
(abl.) "with care".
What is a good way to translate a sentence especially with confusing neuter cases with identical nominative and accusative forms?
I hope my above explanation was not too thick. By process of elimination, looking at all the nouns and determining the cases that you are certain about, you can almost always figure out which of the identical terminations a neuter noun is using.
flebile nescio quid queritur lyra, flebile lingua murmurat exanimis, respondent flebile ripae