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Stupid question:

Postby Kasper » Wed Nov 19, 2003 11:08 pm

I realise this question is no sign of intelligence, but in my socratic wisdom I hereby declare myself ignorant and will question everything.

Sunday night I watched this show on tv about Napoleon, some mini-series or something of that kind. Now, to make a long story really short, they were going to sound the Te Deum in church. I don't understand 'Te Deum', just those two words. How does it translate? You to God? or is Deum some strange way of vocative, isn't the vocative of Deus Dee? Yet Dee also looks weird. Me very confused...
“Cum ego verbo utar,” Humpty Dumpty dixit voce contempta, “indicat illud quod optem – nec plus nec minus.”
“Est tamen rogatio” dixit Alice, “an efficere verba tot res indicare possis.”
“Rogatio est, “Humpty Dumpty responsit, “quae fiat magister – id cunctum est.”
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Postby benissimus » Thu Nov 20, 2003 12:42 am

It's short for "Te Deum Laudamus".
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Postby Skylax » Thu Nov 20, 2003 11:06 am

Vocative of deus is also deus : Te, potentissime deus, laudamus.
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Postby tdominus » Thu Nov 20, 2003 11:45 am

So "Deum Laudamus" would be "we praise God", deum being accusative. What is the te for? Either ablative or accusative..how should it be interpreted?
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Postby tadwelessar » Thu Nov 20, 2003 2:33 pm

it's an emphatic pronoun
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Postby tdominus » Thu Nov 20, 2003 2:54 pm

Isn't te second person though? I'm confused. In "We praise god himself", himself would be third person, no?

I haven't reached emphatic pronouns yet though :)
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Postby chrisb » Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:53 pm

The prayer book translation of 'Te Deum laudamus' is 'We praise Thee, O God'. And in the Te Deum, God is addressed as 'thee' and 'thou' throughout: 'te dominum confitemur'; 'te ergo quaesumus domine', etc.

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Postby benissimus » Thu Nov 20, 2003 8:57 pm

You would think they would use a vocative, but for some reason they chose not to.
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Postby Episcopus » Fri Nov 21, 2003 5:20 pm

I thought, it were "we praise you, God" :o
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Postby benissimus » Fri Nov 21, 2003 11:19 pm

Yes, but is that not a direct address?
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Postby tdominus » Fri Nov 21, 2003 11:43 pm

I'm no expert, clearly, but that was my thought too.

te, deus, laudamus would be "we praise you, God."

So for me the question is "why is god addressed in the accusative (or ablative) case?"
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Postby klewlis » Sat Nov 22, 2003 7:25 am

accusative because it is the direct object of the verb (to praise)
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Postby Skylax » Sat Nov 22, 2003 12:22 pm

The whole sentence reads :
Te Deum laudamus, te Dominum confitemur
The Dominum is clearly a complement (or should I say a predicate?) of the direct object te : "we recognize you as our Lord". It could be the same with Deum "we praise you as God". It could also be considered as a simple apposition : "we praise you, i.e. God."
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