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another "si qua est"

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another "si qua est"

Postby hlawson38 » Wed Apr 04, 2012 12:21 pm

Aeneid, X, l. 827

. . . te que parentum (827)
manibus et cineri, si qua est ea cura, remitto.(828)

And you [ your remains] to the shades and ashes of your ancestors,
if that concern exists, I return.

"si qua est ea cura": how to parse "qua"?

I am tempted again to parse "qua" adverbially: "if at-all that concern exists".

If parsed adjectivally, then both "qua" and "ea" would modify "cura". Is that allowed?

Would knowing how to analyze the meter of the poetic line solve this problem??
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby Sceptra Tenens » Wed Apr 04, 2012 3:53 pm

hlawson38 wrote:Would knowing how to analyze the meter of the poetic line solve this problem??


Not in this case - qua est elides to qua'st, making it a long syllable no matter whether the a is long or short.

But, you are really cheating yourself by not being able to scan meter when reading Vergil. It's so easy once you get the hang of it! Here, I cut my scansion teeth with this video. You might be lost at first, but watch it all the way through at least twice, and ask about what confuses you after that. (Note that scanning becomes automatic after a while, allowing you to read aloud to full effect without pausing to analyze).

hlawson38 wrote:If parsed adjectivally, then both "qua" and "ea" would modify "cura". Is that allowed?


Hm. I can't think of a situation in which it would make sense, but I wouldn't go so far as to say that there absolutely isn't one.

hlawson38 wrote:I am tempted again to parse "qua" adverbially: "if at-all that concern exists".


That's how I'd do it. It's more or less the same qua in:

... hoc regnum dea gentibus esse,
si qua fata sinant, iam tum tenditque fovetque


Which is an ablative feminine in form, and adverbial in function. I've seen it expanded by some as aliqua via, "by some way", and others as aliqua ratione, "by some reason". I suspect that it is originally the former, but the sense of the latter is certainly there.
Last edited by Sceptra Tenens on Wed Apr 04, 2012 11:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby Ulpianus » Wed Apr 04, 2012 10:21 pm

I'm afraid in my dull way I just think of it as meaning "if, somehow", or even just "if". It's a pretty common construction. So "si qua est ea cura" means more or less "if it matters".
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby adrianus » Thu Apr 05, 2012 5:12 pm

I would say that qua is an adjective there, not quā:
Id adjectivum ibi esse dicam, non quā adverbium.
Aeneid II: 535-8 wrote:At tibi pro scere, exclamat, pro talibus ausis
Di (si qua est coelo pietas, quae talia curet)
Persolvant grates dignas, et praemia reddant
Debita.


But for the evil deed, he cries, for such exploits to you
The Gods (if there is any pity [at all] in heaven to care about such things)
Would pay fitting thanks, and give the rewards [punishments]
that were due.


Aeneid X: 827- wrote:Arma, quibus laetatus, habe tua; teque parentum
manibus et cineri, si qua est ea cura, remitto.


Have your arms, in which you rejoiced; and you to your parents'
Remains and grave, if that is any concern [to you at all], I send.
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: another "si qua est"

Postby Ulpianus » Fri Apr 06, 2012 8:47 am

But, Adrianus, how do you then deal with "si qua fata sinant"? I may be going mad, but I don't see how qua could be adjectival there, and it needs to scan long. I'd rather guess it's the same use in each case.

I think personally it's better not to worry too much. It's a (no exclusively) poetic idiom, which more or less means "si" but in a rather grand fashion. In the end, the only question is whether we understand the text.
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby adrianus » Fri Apr 06, 2012 10:50 am

It isn't the same there, Ulpianus. It's different. There it is "Sī quā fāta sinant" = "If thus the fates would allow" and not "Sī quae fāta sinant" for "If any fates would allow" .
Aliter, Ulpiane, ibi est, scilicet "quā", aliud vocabulum seu incarnatio pronominis adverbialis.

And in "si qua fides, animum si veris implet Apollo" we're back to "qua" adjective again.
Et per a brevem vocalem pronomen adjectivum est hîc: "si qua fides, animum si veris implet Apollo".

Sometimes we think we understand the text but we can misunderstand it. I often misunderstand it. I suppose fluency means misunderstanding to the least extent.
Nonnunquàm nos sensum capere credimus at perperám. Sic saepè facio. Quàm minimè errat qui facundè loquatur, ut suppono.
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: another "si qua est"

Postby Sceptra Tenens » Fri Apr 06, 2012 1:25 pm

Recte dixit Adrianus. There is really no metrical evidence one way or the other for si qua est as there is for si qua fata, and the way that he translates it adjectivally is compelling. In the absence of conclusive evidence one way or the other, though, I default to the adverbial usage, but can in no way fault Adrianus's version, which may well be correct (so far as my classically-blind eyes can see).
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby Ulpianus » Fri Apr 06, 2012 2:10 pm

adrianus wrote:It isn't the same there, Ulpianus. It's different. There it is "Sī quā fāta sinant" = "If thus the fates would allow" and not "Sī quae fāta sinant" for "If any fates would allow" .
Aliter, Ulpiane, ibi est, scilicet "quā", aliud vocabulum seu incarnatio pronominis adverbialis.


Sorry, that was rather my point: though I think now it is a false point.

My point was that we can say (with certainty) that in "si qua fata sinant" (also 6.882 "si qua fata aspera rumpas") it must be adverbial: and that we might then assume that in parallel constructions where neither metre nor grammar give us the answer we would be justified in making a similar assumption. But as you rightly point out in the passage in 3.433-434 it must be adjectival. But where does that really take us? All it shows is that it's sometimes adverbial and sometimes adjectival. That doesn't help us to decide in the cases where the metre and grammar don't determine it. When you say "it's different" you really cannot know. It might be, or it might not be. We can say it's different if 3.434 and in 6.882: but we simply don't know which "model" we are seeing in 10.828. (I'd prefer adverbial because I find the piling up of qua with ea clumsy, but I don't pretend to have any evidence to back that hunch.)

The bigger point is that it hardly matters. Take "si qua est caelo pietas". As between "if there is any pity in heaven" and "if somehow there is pity in heaven", what is the real difference? Anyway, if you do see a difference, you can't rationally justify your choice by metrical or grammatical grounds, nor (as it emerges, contrary to my erroneous view) on grounds that there is a reasonably uniform usage of "si qua" as an idiom which is generally adverbial, since it sometimes is and sometimes isn't. Happily, in this case at least, it makes little difference. (Far more problematic is the translation of pietas!)
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby adrianus » Fri Apr 06, 2012 5:12 pm

I didn't say you couldn't translate it otherwise; I just thought the adjectival sense was finer in the context, because I do see a significant difference.

"if there is any pity at all in heaven to care about such things => sustains a reading "surely there must be"
whereas
"if somehow there is pity in heaven to care about such things" sounds a bit pointless to me. The quâ sense is just too heavy in that context.

Similarly, "if that is of any concern to you at all" sustains "as surely it must be"
whereas
"if somehow that is of concern to you" again sounds pointless.

Ut id aliter vertatur fieri potest, scio. Tantummodo aculeatiorem esse adjectivum sensum credi quod non parvum discrimen alteri, qui alter sensus auri meae subtilitatem caret.
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: another "si qua est"

Postby Sceptra Tenens » Fri Apr 06, 2012 5:28 pm

I could just as easily translate si qua as "if in any way whatsoever", which remain true to its supposed origins.
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby adrianus » Fri Apr 06, 2012 6:24 pm

That is true. quācunque
Verum est.
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: another "si qua est"

Postby Ulpianus » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:17 pm

adrianus wrote:I didn't say you couldn't translate it otherwise; I just thought the adjectival sense was finer in the context, because I do see a significant difference.

"if there is any pity at all in heaven to care about such things => sustains a reading "surely there must be"
whereas
"if somehow there is pity in heaven to care about such things" sounds a bit pointless to me. The quâ sense is just too heavy in that context.


Yup. Perhaps. I'm not convinced I see a significant distinction, and I'm not certain which the context would lead me to prefer: it's been too long. I'm not sure the theology -- if I can call it that -- of the Aeneid does actually invite an assumption there is pietas in heaven. The notion that pity/any sense of duty towards humankind is an expected attribute of (a) deity or the cosmos might be anachronistic. I don't know. What matters, in this context, is that translation has to rest on understanding the text as a whole, and not merely on grammar. On that we agree. I think ST's translation, which has the merit of preserving ambiguity, is admirable.
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby adrianus » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:06 pm

The elderly king, Priam, is utterly devastated because he has just seen his son killed before him. He sort of screams to me the words "if there is ANY pietas in heaven". I can't make him scream to me "if there is IN ANY WAY pietas in heaven", even less "if there is SOMEHOW (or IN ANY WAY WHATSOEVER) pietas in heaven". That seems weaker in English. ANY pietas claws for the least shred. And I see that Pharr has it short, not long.

Penitùs perditus est Priamus rex senex qui filium occidi modo viderit. Ejulat, id mihi videtur, haec verba "si QUA est (sine elisione, tuâ veniâ) coelo pietas"; non haec, "Si QUÂ est coelo pietas". Minùs aptum etiam anglicé. QUA pietas minimam quidem pietatis partem orat. Et brevem non longam a litteram habet Pharr.
Last edited by adrianus on Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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: another "si qua est"

Postby Sceptra Tenens » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:12 pm

Is there anything wrong with taking the adverb as "at all"?
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Re: another "si qua est"

Postby adrianus » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:21 pm

Nihil ei obstat nisi forsit cum Priamo vel Vergilio quorum neuter recusare potest. Quis eodem modo quam alius convertit? Satis est ea verba tonis miserrimis audiri; si tu audis, bonum est.
The only people it could really matter to are Priam and Vergil and neither can object. Who translates in exactly the same way? If you can hear those words in the most anguished tones, then that works for you.
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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