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Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

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Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Swth\r » Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:50 pm

Dear friends,
it' s been a lot of time since my last contribution to our lovely fellowship...
At first I would like to apologize to all of you for my very long text, and I hope that I do not violate any of forum's rules.

My request, as I feel, will be of interest perhaps of a minority of fellows, quite experienced in Latin Language or perhaps even Latin teachers . But I ask the opinion of anyone able to help me on this:

Having studied Linguistics and teaching Latin for over 10 years, I have come to the conclusion that in indirect discourse, all past tenses of the indicative are represented by the perfent infinitive. The above statement can also be found (among other sources) in the following Latin Grammar works:

1. E. C. Woodcock, "A New Latin Syntax", page 20, § 30.
“The rule for converting these into O.O (=Oratio Obliqua) is as follows:
[...]
scripsi, scribebam, scripseram epistulam -> Dicit, dixit, dicet se epistulam scripsisse.
[...]
And page 21, § 31
“I will be observed from the scheme given in the previous section that the perfect infinitive has to represent all the four kinds of past tense of the finite verb. Latin has no special infinitive form to express continuous action in the past, like the English ‘to have been writing’, and until late times, when quod-clauses became serious rivals of the accusative and infinitive construction in O.O, there was nothing better than dicit se scripsisse to represent ‘he says that he was writing’. But scripsisse tells us only that the writing took place before the time of speaking; it does not, like ‘was writing’ express clearly the idea of incomplete or progressive action in the past.”

2. Allen-Greenough, "New Latin Grammar", § 534: http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/tex ... section=12

Tenses of the Infinitive in Indirect Discourse
584. [...]
cadēbam, I was falling; cecidī, I fell, have fallen; cecideram, I had fallen.
dīcit sē cecidisse, he says he was falling, fell, has fallen, had fallen.
dīxit sē cecidisse, he said he fell, had fallen.
[...]

a. All varieties of past time are usually expressed in Indirect Discourse by the Perfect Infinitive, which may stand for the Imperfect, the Perfect, or the Pluperfect Indicative of the Direct.

Note.--Continued or repeated action in past time is sometimes expressed by the Present Infinitive, which in such cases stands for the Imperfect Indicative of the Direct Discourse and is often called the Imperfect Infinitive.
This is the regular construction after meminī when referring to a matter of actual experience or observation: as,tē meminī haec dīcere, I remember your saying this (that you said this). [Direct: dīxistī or dīcēbās .]”

3. Gildersleeve-Lodge, "Latin Grammar" page 333, § 530
“After verbs of saying, showing, believing, perceiving and the like,
[...]
The perfect infinitive expresses prior action
[...]
Remark. — The action which is completed with regard to the leading verb may be in itself a continued action. So in English: ‘I have been studying, I had been studying’. Hence, the Imperfect Indicative (I was studying) is represented in this dependent form by the Perfect Infinitive, because it is prior to the leading verb.
[...]
Prior Action.
Present Tense: Dicit te errasse = He says, that you have gone wrong, that you went wrong, that you
have been going wrong,
Historical Tense: Dicebat te errasse = He was saying, that you had gone wrong, that you went wrong, that you had been {that people had been going wrong.”
[...]

To be continued...
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Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Swth\r » Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:52 pm

Continuing from previous post...

4. Charles E. Benett, “New Latin Grammar”, § 270
270. 1. The tenses of the Infinitive denote time not absolutely, but with reference to the verb on which they depend. Thus:—

[...]
b) The Perfect Infinitive represents an act as prior to the time of the verb on which it depends; as,—
vidētur honōrēs adsecūtus esse, he seems to have gained honors;
vīsus est honōrēs adsecūtus esse, he seemed to have gained honors.

and § 317: Tenses of the Infinitive.

317. These are used in accordance with the regular principles for the use of the Infinitive as given in § 270.
a. The Perfect Infinitive may represent any past tense of the Indicative of Direct Discourse. Thus:—
sciō tē haec ēgisse may mean—
I know you were doing this.(Direct: haec agēbās.)
I know you did this. (Direct: haec ēgistī.)
I know you had done this. (Direct: haec ēgerās.)

5. G. M. Lane, “A Latin Grammar, for schools and colleges“, page 385, § 2226
Any past tense of the indicative, when made dependent on a verb of perceiving, knowing, thinking or saying, is represented by the perfect infinitive.
Thus, in Theophrastus scribit Cimonem hospitalem fuisse: ita enim vilicis imperavisse, ut omnia praeberentur, Off. 3, 64, Theophrastus says in his book that Cimon was the soul of hospitality: he had directed his stewards to furnish everything required, the fuisse represents erat of fuit, and the imperavisse may represent imperabat, imperavit, or perhaps imperaverat ot direct discourse.

6. R. Kühner- C. Stegmann, “Ausführliche Grammatik der lateinischen Sprache”, page 238, § 10027
Der Unterschied, der in der direkten Rede zwischen dem Indikative des Imperfekts, des Perfekts und des Plusquamperfekts stattfindet, fallt in der obliquen Rede weg, da der Indikativ aller drei Zeitformen nur durch den Infinitiv des Perfekts bezeichnet werden kann.

But, in ERNOUT-THOMAS Latin Syntax, page 324 § 325, and also page 423 § 410 it is said that the Imperfect indicative becomes a Present Infinitive (because it denotes continuity of the action), and cites only one example from Cicero, the following:

M. Tullius Cicero. De Officiis (M. Tulli Ciceronis Scripta Quae
Manserunt Omnia. Fasc. 48, ed. C. Atzert, 1932). (0474: 055)
book 1, section 108, line 12

Callidum Hannibalem ex Poenorum, ex nostris ducibus Q. Maximum accepimus, facile celare, tacere, dissimulare, insidiari, praeripere hostium consilia.

I have three questions for you all:

1. What is your oppinion about this?
2. What is your rewiev about ERNOUT-THOMAS Latin syntax work?
3. Does it happen that anyone of you have access to the following book?
LEUMANN-HOFMANN-SZANTYR, Lateneische Grammatik, VOL. II, Syntax
Any quotation from that book would be of great importance to me! Thanks in advance for any reply, and sorry again for my long text!
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Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Polyfloisbos » Tue Jun 12, 2012 11:50 am

I have access to that LEUMANN-HOFMANN-SZANTYR, and that's what I've found:

1: http://i50.tinypic.com/14jylfn.jpg

2: http://i45.tinypic.com/eai5wl.jpg

3: http://i45.tinypic.com/10ncfwm.jpg

4: http://i47.tinypic.com/1elxrc.jpg



I'm really interested in this, so I'd thank you if you could post what this grammar says -my knowledge of german doesn't go too far.
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Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Swth\r » Tue Jun 12, 2012 2:17 pm

Polyfloisbos wrote:I have access to that LEUMANN-HOFMANN-SZANTYR, and that's what I've found:

1: http://i50.tinypic.com/14jylfn.jpg

2: http://i45.tinypic.com/eai5wl.jpg

3: http://i45.tinypic.com/10ncfwm.jpg

4: http://i47.tinypic.com/1elxrc.jpg



I'm really interested in this, so I'd thank you if you could post what this grammar says -my knowledge of german doesn't go too far.


You are so great! Thank you very much! But I 'm afraid that those pages are irrelevant to our matter. Here the meanings of the perfect tense in Latin is widely discoussed. My german is't also so good, but I have the correct person to help me in translation. :wink: Sometimes I can unerstand using google's translation programm.

If you can, search where the words "Indirekte Rede", or something like that, are.
Dives qui sapiens est...
Swth\r
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Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Swth\r » Tue Jun 12, 2012 2:20 pm

Swth\r wrote:
Polyfloisbos wrote:I have access to that LEUMANN-HOFMANN-SZANTYR, and that's what I've found:

1: http://i50.tinypic.com/14jylfn.jpg

2: http://i45.tinypic.com/eai5wl.jpg

3: http://i45.tinypic.com/10ncfwm.jpg

4: http://i47.tinypic.com/1elxrc.jpg



I'm really interested in this, so I'd thank you if you could post what this grammar says -my knowledge of german doesn't go too far.


You are so great! Thank you very much! But I 'm afraid that those pages are irrelevant to our matter. Here the meanings of the perfect tense in Latin are widely discoussed. My german isn't also so good, but I have the correct person to help me in translation. :wink: Sometimes I can unerstand using google's translation programm.

If you can, search where the words "Indirekte Rede", or something like that, are.
Dives qui sapiens est...
Swth\r
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Posts: 270
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Location: Greece

Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Polyfloisbos » Tue Jun 12, 2012 6:05 pm

I'll check it as soon as I can :) . Right now I'm totally into exams, but I hope I'll find a moment to scan it.
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Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Polyfloisbos » Thu Jun 14, 2012 7:31 pm

Here you are. If this isn't what you were searching for, I think that book cannot be useful to you... I searched for anything related with "indirekte" and that was all I found:

http://i48.tinypic.com/nv8f1h.jpg
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Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Swth\r » Mon Jun 10, 2013 4:53 pm

Up... Up...

No help yet... :roll:
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Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Qimmik » Wed Jun 12, 2013 7:00 pm

There was a recent discussion of another instance where Ernout/Thomas seemed to take a position at odds with other works on Latin syntax regarding tenses in indirect discourse. See my post of Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:02 pm in this thread: http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=59907&p=155086#p155086. I don't know what the answer is, but it always good to bear in mind that the textbook rules are based on compilations of examples from ancient authors, and it's always possible that they could be wrong could have missed some examples that don't adhere strictly to the rules.

Callidum Hannibalem ex Poenorum, ex nostris ducibus Q. Maximum accepimus, facile celare, tacere, dissimulare, insidiari, praeripere hostium consilia.

To me at least, this sentence would seem much less vivid had Cicero used perfect infinitives, but perhaps the present infinitives are used because Fabius is imagined as describing events taking place as he speaks. It's also possible that the present infinitives are intended to reflect a historical present in direct speech.

It seems to me this loses something:

Callidum Hannibalem ex Poenorum, ex nostris ducibus Q. Maximum accepimus, facile celasse, tacuisse, dissimulasse, insidiatum esse, praeripuisse hostium consilia.
Last edited by Qimmik on Fri Jun 21, 2013 2:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Help in a contradiction about Indirect discourse rule

Postby Swth\r » Fri Jun 21, 2013 1:42 pm

Qimmik wrote:There was a recent discussion of another instance where Ernout/Thomas seemed to take a position at odds with other works on Latin syntax regarding tenses in indirect discourse. See my post of Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:02 pm in this thread: http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=59907&p=155086#p155086. I don't know what the answer is, but it always good to bear in mind that the textbook rules are based on compilations of examples from ancient authors, and it's always possible that they could be wrong could have missed some examples that don't adhere strictly to the rules.

Callidum Hannibalem ex Poenorum, ex nostris ducibus Q. Maximum accepimus, facile celare, tacere, dissimulare, insidiari, praeripere hostium consilia.

To me at least, this sentence would seem much less vivid had Cicero used perfect infinitives, but perhaps the present infinitives are used because Fabius is imagined as describing events taking place as he speaks. It's also possible that the present infinitives are intended to reflect a historical present in direct speech.

It seems to me this loses something:

Callidum Hannibalem ex Poenorum, ex nostris ducibus Q. Maximum accepimus, facile celassee, tacuisse, dissimulasse, insidiatum esse, praeripuisse hostium consilia.


Thanks for replying Qimmik!

If I am not wrong, the above example is from Ernout-Thomas' Latine Syntax.

Your point that historic present is represented in O.O. by present infinitive is something that I had in mind too. Nevertheless I have not been able to spot it in any syntax-grammat textbook.

But historic present is in sense parallel to perfect I supppose, not to Imperfect. These authors suggest that the above infinitives represent imperfect tense, not perfect at any rate.

The same principle holds, according to Ernout-Thomas, for the imperfect indicative when it has to be put in the subjunctive in the "Oratio Obliqua": They suggest that the imperfect indicative of the O.R. is in the O.O. put into the present or imperfect subjunctive, like exactly the present indicative, while any other in english written handbook clearly states that the transformation at hand is to the perfect or Pluperfect subjunctive...

Their argument is that the idea of continuation can explicitly be stated only by the specific verb forms, and they say exactly the oppositive to (e.g.) Woodcock, when he emphatically declares that this nuance is lost when an imperfect indicative is put to the infinitive (Perfect for him) or the suabjunctive (again Perfect/Pluperfect to him)... :roll:

I don't have time enough in my disposition to read the whole thread that you mentioned before, but 2-3 days ago I had a glance on the specific pages of Ernout-Thomas about consecutio temporum. I could see that some examples should not be under examination in these pages, because indirect discourse was involved.

Latine Syntax is now available also in (modern) Greek, I allready have it in my library, and I have started reading it... My french is quite worse than my english... 8)

I feel sorry that the book is not arround here at the moment. I only remember that there was an example with a cum clause + pluperf. subjunct., a simul ac clause + perf. subjunct., depended uppon a perfect infinitive, which in turn was depended uppon a primary verb. To me it was clear enough that the Pluperf. subjunctive was an original mood of the direct discourse, while the Perf. subjunctive was there instead of an original perfect indicative or the direct discourse. This makes enough difference regarding what tense of subunctive can be found after a primary verb in cases like that:
O.R.:
perfect indicative, cum + Pluperf. subj, simulac + perf. indic.
=> O.O.
Primary tense leading verb ->
perfect infinitive, cum + pluperf. subj. (from direct speech already), simulac + perf. subj. (transformation or the original perf. indic. after a primary tense leading verb)

They say, if I can recall correctly, that sometimes a subjunctive of the same tense an indicative would have may occur in an obvious un-accordance with the rules of sequence . But as I understand it, there is no violation of any rule of the sequence, because in O.O. somehow different rules apply, as my dear Woodcock wonderfully puts it.
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