bellum paxque wrote:5. Harum sententiarum quae vera sit, deus aliqui videat.
I can't make any sense of it. Literally, it seems: "Of these opinions which be true, some god would see." What noun governs "harum sententiarum"? Is it the woman (?) implied in "quae" and "vera"? And how are the two sentences connected? What is it that some god sees?
The first thing you should do when you see a subjunctive (sit
in this case) is ask yourself why it is there. Very rarely is a subjunctive translated by "would", "may", or "might".
Here are some basic clues, which are correct most of the time, that should help in determining why a verb is in the subjunctive (excluding, for now, the more specific types such as fear clauses):tam, ita, tantum
, etc. in the main clause; ut
+ subjunctive in the subordinate clause = result clauseut
+ subjunctive in the subordinate clause (without tam, ita, etc in main clause) = purpose clause
present subjunctive in the main clause = hortatory/volitive/jussive
(whatever you like to call them)
subordinate clause containing a subjunctive and interrogative words, introduced in the main clause by a verb of thought/observation/speech = indirect question
For this sentence, videat
fits the description of a jussive subjunction and sit
fits the description of indirect question (you may not have known that qui, quae, quod
is sometimes used interrogatively like quis, quid
). You can leave the indirect question as it is, but you need to translate videat along the lines of "let (some god) see". The meaning of the sentence will also become clearer to you if you move the words after the comma to the beginning of the sentence. Sometimes to our English minds it is just word order that blurs the meaning, although the sentence may be translated perfectly or nearly perfectly.
32. Di in caelo, parcite nobis! Naturam optimam ducem tamquam deum sequimur eique paremus.
Just a small question here. The first half is fine; but in the last half, there seem to be a lot of accusatives: "naturam optimam ducem . . . deum." Would I translate it as, "we follow our best nature, the leader, as it were, of the gods, and we will obey it"? This textbook does not give any examples with tamquam, so I'm not entirely sure how it's used. Deum is a bit tricky, since it can be either accusative singular or genitive plural, I believe.
It is better to translate naturam optimam ducem
as "nature, the best leader"; this is a rare situation where dux
is feminine simply because it is in apposition with a feminine thing, natura
. I would translate tamquam
"just as...", i.e. "we follow nature... just as (we follow) a god...". deum
could indeed be genitive plural, but it makes more sense for it to be accusative singular here and I don't recall seeing deum
used for genitive plural in this textbook (deorum
35b. Me interficere conanti dextram moratus sum manum.
I think that "conanti" is most confusing for me in this sentence. It seems to read, "I stayed my right hand . . . the one trying to kill me." Is "me interficere conanti" an ablative of cause? That, I guess, seems plausible. But I haven't seen a participial phrase used like that before.
this is a modification from Caesar's BC, "gladium educere conanti dextram moratur manum". me conanti
makes the most sense as an ablative absolute with interficere
acting as complement to conanti
, i.e. "(with) me trying to kill", "while I tried to kill", etc. I have to admit this one gave me pause as well, the modification they made to it makes it more difficult than it already was, and Caesar's original sentence was not very easy.
51. ... Sed de his duobus generibus alterum est druidum, quibus unus fortissimus praeest, alterum equitum. ...
I really enjoyed reading most of this adapted excerpt from Caesar, but this particular sentence stumped me. My translation: "But concerning these two types, one is of [?] the druids, of whom the strongest is the chief, the other of [?] the horsemen." First, why are the two alterums in accusative? Of which verb are they the object? Second, I am having difficulty understanding why "druidum" and "equitum" are in the genitive.
, both times supply genus
, which does not need repeating since it has already been mentioned and is the only neuter noun in the sentence. But I myself don't see anything wrong with saying "of these two classes one (class) is of druids, ..., the other (class is) of knights". druidum
are genitives of composition, like in English we would say "a school of fish", "a band of thugs", "a house of idiots", "a race of druids and knights".
I noticed that you did not translate unus
in the relative clause. It seems a little odd to say "of whom the one strongest is the chief", but not if you say something like "of whom the strongest one is the chief".
flebile nescio quid queritur lyra, flebile lingua murmurat exanimis, respondent flebile ripae