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§ 447. Exercise II. Page 188. Gen/Abl of Description.

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§ 447. Exercise II. Page 188. Gen/Abl of Description.

Postby Episcopus » Sun Dec 21, 2003 3:19 pm

Here I am basically unsure, due to lack of reading any Latin in context but D'Ooge exercises, of what qualifies for Ablative or Genitive of Description.
The Genitive I understand is for numerical, Ablative for physical. What about the word, as will be mentioned below, "magnitude"? This seems abstract but reflects physical presence. By the way the Ex. I. was very easy so that goes well. Correct as I am sure you shall :)

II. 1. Caesar was a general of much wisdom and great boldness, and very skillful in the art of war.
-Caesar erat imperator multi consili magnaeque audaciae ac rei militaris peritissimus.

2. The Germans were of great size and thought that the Romans had no power.
-Germani erant magnae multitudinis et iudicabant Romanos nihil posse.

3. Men of the highest courage were left in the camp as guard to the baggage.
-Homines summae virtutis in castris relicti sunt impedimentis praesidio.

4. The king's daughter who was given in marriage to the chief of a neighbouring state, was a woman of a very beautiful appearance.
-Filia regis in matrimonium finitimae prinipi civitatis data, femina erat facié pulcherrimá.

5. The soldiers will construct a ditch of nine feet around the camp.
-Milites fossam castra circum pedum novem perducent.

6. A river of great width was between us and the enemy.
-Flumen magná latitudine inter nos et hostes erat.
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Postby whiteoctave » Sun Dec 21, 2003 6:29 pm

I've done enough Tacitus for now, so I thought I'd comment on your sentences.

(1) was generally nice, word order is perhaps an issue though. If you had swapped the order of multi consili and magnaeque audiciae, and then allowed magnae to succeed audaciae, you would have formed a neat chiasmus. You could have left imperator (in apposition as it is) later, and had:

Caesar audaciae magni multique consili ac rei militaris peritissimus erat imperator.

Nice vocab though.

for (2), for some reaso magnae multitudinis doesn't seem to work "of great (great) number". I think making magnus agree with the Germans and putting multitudo/magnitudo in the ablative may be more idiomatic. As regards the "nihil posse", that seems to me to be an over-simplication that even Tac. might shy away from. It is a good idea to introduce verbs instead of a weak adjective, but i think you need facere here.

Germani Romanos, cum magni multitudine essent, haud quicquam facere posse censuit.

(3) was v good. maybe bring sunt relecti to the end.

In (4) I saw what you were doing with the ppp data, but it's altering the sense somewhat, as her being given in marriage does not precede her beauty. Though "in matronium dare" seems to fit with English, collocare tended to be used more often and "in matrimonium" could even be removed ("filiam alicui nuptum" was generally used if dare was chosen). Seeing as there is talk of a king, the neighbouring "state" is probably a kingdom of sorts, so "civitas" (more 'body politic') may not be appropriate. Myabe regnum/imperium/terra, but finitimus is nice. Although you use odd accents, I imagine you mean the last 'a' of pulcherrima to be long, i.e. the ablative. I think it more idiomatic to keep facies in the ablative but have pulcherrima in the nominative. thus:

filia regis, a quo principi regni finitimi est collocata, femina facie pulcherrima erat.

In (5) you put circum after castra. Prepositions are so called for a reason ;) Other than in alterations in high-style verse, tenus and (often) versus are the only prepositions in prose to succeed their noun. You could, of course, have meant that the ditch constructed was "about nine feet", but that's not in the English. I know that 'fossam ducere' is a very nice way of saying "create a ditch/trench" and can only imagine that the same is good with perducere instead. nice. It may be better to back up your depth with altam, so that it is clear its depth, not length or width, is being decribed. A partitive genitive is not used after numbers here, but an accusative of respect, and numerals preceed what they qualify.

milites fossam novem pedes altam circum castra (per)ducent.


(6) was nice. nos hostesque would have bound them better, perhaps.


overall good.
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Postby Episcopus » Mon Dec 22, 2003 1:29 pm

Regarding the numerals, D'Ooge says that partitive genitive is used to modify the ditch; however, is "altam", "longam" or whatnot had been used then an accusative of extent would have been required.

(1) Do tell me what a chiasmus is. I have but 5 months of one beginner's, albeit class, course remember :wink:

(2) So with multitude, magnitude, more physical characteristics ablative is used? It's still not clear to me when exactly in instances with more abstract nouns which simultaneously reflect physical facets of an element.

"haud quicquam facere posse censuit"

cénseo, censere, censui, census - to assess, rate, take a census; estimate appreciate; express an opinion, vote, advise; judge think.
(that was for my purposes)

Judged them to be able to do nothing at all. Interesting...haud is nice.

D'Ooge wrote "nihil posse" as an idiom before, I think it sounds sweet.

(3) That was intended for emphasis :?

(4) Ah I see what you're doing with the nominative, nice :wink: but bearing in mind that this is a review of the ablative I used that

(5) The other day I saw "se inter" in some prose, so I decided to be naughty.


Thanks whiteoctave, I'm glad to see that some one here has had an amazing education! Damn grammar schools :wink:
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Postby whiteoctave » Mon Dec 22, 2003 1:43 pm

schools tend to give the foundation. all the resources are there to make your education your own.

a chiasmus is a sweet little linguistic decoration which can be used when two similar things are being balanced or contrasted. The word 'things', I appreciate, is not very informative: they can be whole phrases or simply nouns qualified by adjectives. Anyhow, say that we have two pairs of noun+adjective. Latin would tend to write noun-adjective(et/atque/vel/aut/ac[if next letter is consonant]) noun(-que/-ve)-adjective, but you can alter this "nana" formula to either "anna" or "naan", by reversal of one of the two parts. It can be nice to put the two things contrasted together in the middle, or if the latter adds to the former, maybe strike up some central alliteration and eitherkeepthe syllables balanced with an 'et' or balance them up with the enclitic -que as necessary.
I'm intrigued as in what prose work you saw "se inter" where the former was dependent upon the latter...

why do not more people write latin on this board? its like one post every two days?

~dave
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Postby Episcopus » Mon Dec 22, 2003 1:49 pm

It was in the Cambridge Latin Anthology, I was skimming it then realised I hated the stupid stories so read some of Dr. D'Ooge's reading matter :lol:


Well, I am the only one to write on this board regularly. Since I have now finished the book (last night) there will be only one more post of exercises here from me... :?

My school tends to give nothing. Most teachers and pupils think me to be an arrogant duckface due to my relative zeal for Latin and my incessant hatred for science maths english RS History etc.
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Postby whiteoctave » Mon Dec 22, 2003 2:17 pm

well, now you've finished that seminal work, you can go to one of these real-deal babies!

http://classicsteacher.co.uk/latin_pros ... sition.htm

~dave

p.s. would you be able to give me the se inter ref.?
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Postby Episcopus » Mon Dec 22, 2003 2:34 pm

Seminal :cry: I'll have you know Latin For Beginners is the best book that I have ever read.

I intend to work on the HCP Prose Composition based on Cicero.

There are 200 pages in the Anthology, half of which are vocabulary...I can't find it at the moment, but I saw it just yesterday. It was definitely there as it made me say, like you probably, "Qué?!" :cry: :wink:
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