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Use of suus

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Use of suus

Postby brookter » Sun Dec 12, 2010 10:01 pm

Salvēte, amīcī.

From LLPSI Cap XVII:

"Magister Diodōrus [...] puerōs aspicit, quī tacītī stant ante suam quisque sellam."

Is this 'each standing in front of his (the Magister's chair)' or 'each standing in front of his (the pupil's own) chair'?

I think it should be the latter, with suam (singular because each pupil only has one chair) relating to object (quisque) in that clause. But can the main clause 'override' this? Or would standing in front of the teacher's chair be '... ante eius sellam...'?

Putō sē stultum esse...

David
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Re: Use of suus

Postby adrianus » Sun Dec 12, 2010 11:37 pm

brookter wrote:'each standing in front of his (the pupil's own) chair'

discipuli = subjectum "stant" verbi; suum = each's own
I'm writing in Latin hoping for correction, and not because I'm confident in how I express myself. Latinè scribo ut ab omnibus corrigar, non quod confidenter me exprimam.
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Re: Use of suus

Postby furrykef » Sun Dec 12, 2010 11:40 pm

Hmmm. I'm strongly inclined to interpret this as "their own chairs", mostly because of "quisque". As it's expressed now, it would say either "each stands before his own chair" or "each stands before the teacher's chair" -- but the latter doesn't sound quite right, does it? "Each" emphasizes the individual members. If we wanted them to stand before the teacher's chair, we'd more likely say "They all stand before the teacher's chair" (omnēs stant ante suam sellam -- in this case it's also grammatically clear that there's only one chair, or it'd be suās sellās).

As for whether "suam sellam" could theoretically refer to the teacher's chair if we ignored that context, though, I have no idea.

(EDIT: I looked at the sentence again, and I think even in that case it would have to be the students' chairs, because it's in a relative clause. I do know that use of sē/suum can be ambiguous in cases such as indirect speech, but I don't think it can be ambiguous in relative clauses...)

brookter wrote:Putō sē stultum esse...

If you're trying to say think you're stupid (which you're certainly not :)), that should be "mē". Remember that sē is only used to refer to a third person.
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Re: Use of suus

Postby brookter » Mon Dec 13, 2010 7:37 am

Thanks, both, for the confirmation.

Furrykef: re the sē - I had in the back of mind something about putō with esse taking sē, but of course that's in indirect speech. Dixī mē stultum esse....

Thanks again

David
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Re: Use of suus

Postby Perseus » Wed Jan 05, 2011 9:17 am

Have you seen this dedicated forum to LLPSI?
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=11400
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Re: Use of suus

Postby anunci1011 » Mon Jan 02, 2012 7:06 am

More accurately, as soon as there's a verb that does more than simply state the existence of persons or things, then it's important. When nouns are merely being connected by the verb esse "to be", the reflexive is not used. For you picture caption, something like hic sunt is implied.
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