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Ut linguam latinam docas
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Date:2005-06-14 17:05

My friend and I attend a high school where Latin is not taught. She has never taken the language before, and I took Latin I in middle school. The two of us are writing a petition in the form of a persuasive essay (And signatures, of course.) We're trying to gather as many benefits as possible from Latin as a part of the curriculum, and are turning to the internet (you) to help us expand on the ideas we already have!



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Date:2004-12-28 16:42

hi i'm new and i was wondering, how do u know what order to put the words in cuz i do latin at school and we just do latin to english and the words in the sentences are usually muddled around and i wanted to know if there was anyway of knowing what order to put them in so i can write in latin.

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Date:2004-11-14 21:42

Could someone tell me how to say "Nothing is stronger than trust" in Latin please?

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Date:2004-08-11 22:12
Mood: tired

I thought this icon was appropriate, even more so if you've seen Life of Brian (if you haven't, do: there's a very funny Latin scene, among other things).

(made by parrotdroppings, quite the talented iconist)

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Date:2004-08-06 19:03
Subject:To be, or not to be...

And now the moment we've all been waiting for - our first irregular verb!!

The verb "to be," to be exact. Present tense.

</i>sum, esse, fui, futuris</i> - To Be

1st singular - sum ("I am")
2nd singular - es ("you are")
3rd singular - est ("he/she/it is")
1st plural - sumus ("we are")
2nd plural - estis ("you are")
3rd plural - sunt ("they are")

You may notice some similarities to the French or Spanish. Good observation. Please make special note that the word "est" is pronounced with the T sound. Few things are more annoying than someone who pronounces "est" like the French do. Well, if you're trying for Latin. If you're trying for French, obviously it's okay.

This is an irregular conjugation, but it forms the base for so many OTHER irregular verbs that it is almost a whole conjugation family on its own. So please remember it. It's important.

esse, non esse?

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Date:2004-07-29 16:52
Subject:After Two Months of Baited Breath...

Well, thank you all for your patience. I know, I know, it's been a while and I'm a bad mod. But nonetheless, here is the second half of the Second Declension. The first half is Masculine, and the second half is Neuter.

That's right, there are actually TWO declensions in the Second declension. Weird, eh? So when I talk about Second Declension nouns, they can be either Neuter OR Masculine.

These are the Masculine nouns and adjectives.

Neuter - parvum donum
Nom. - parvum donum (a little gift)
Gen. - parvi doni (of a little gift)
Dat. - parvo dono (to/for a little gift)
Acc. - parvum donum (a little gift)
Abl. - parvo dono (with/by/from a little gift)
Voc. - parvum donum (O little gift!)

Nom. - parva dona (the little gifts)
Gen. - parvorum donorum (of the little gifts)
Dat. - parvis donis (to/for the little gifts)
Acc. - parva dona (the little gifts)
Abl. - parvis donis (with/by/from the little gifts)
Voc. - parva dona (O little gifts!)

You can see that the Neuter Plural nominative, accusative, and vocative look suspiciously similar to the First Declension singular forms, don't they? This is why it is SO IMPORTANT to memorize not just the word, but which declension it is.

So, be good little discipuli and memorize your vocab for me. Tomorrow I will give you some more grammar and some excercises to go with.


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Date:2004-07-19 22:27

I'm posting this as a follow-up to my previous post. I've taken everyone's suggestions regarding my friend's phrase ("If I wanted your opinion, I'd read it in your entrails."), fiddled with it, and come up with the following:

Si iudicium istum vellem, extorum tuam inspicerem.

I wanted to get everyone's thoughts and opinions again. Does this make sense? Should I fiddle with it more?

Thank you SO MUCH for your help!

[Again, crossposted all over the place.]

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Date:2004-07-18 20:49
Subject:Translation help -- apologies in advance.

I recently finished a graduate intensive summer Latin course, and was complaining about it to a friend of mine when he perked up and said, "Hey! There's something I've been trying to get translated for a while. Can you help me?"

Six weeks of brain-numbing Latin boot camp, and my grammar is still pretty weak, so I wanted to ask for backup before I give him the translation I came up with (he's getting it printed on a t-shirt).

Here's the prase in English:

If I wanted your opinion, I'd read it in your entrails.

and my translation:
Si opinium tui optem, in visceribus [tui] eam legam.

Ok, so here's what I came up with grammar-wise:
1) Future less vivid construction (hence present subjunctive in both clauses).
2) Second person pronoun in the genitive to show possession. (Is there a better way to do this?)
3) Opinio and viscera in the accusative, singular and plural respectively (though I'm totally unsure on the gender of these nouns; my dictionary didn't cover that).
4) Do I need the second tui, or does it get redundant?

Any and all help most graciously appreciated!

[Cross-posted ridiculously. Again, apologies.]

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Date:2004-06-12 21:46
Subject:Thanks, Ratey!

It has come to my attention that in one of the vocab lists I linked you to, "magna" is listed as a noun. This is TOTALLY incorrect. It is an ADJECTIVE. I don't know how they messed that up, but it's true. "Magna, magnae" is an adjective.

Please, I hope this clears up some confusions for everything.

And if you come across something suspicious-looking in the future, please ask, just in case.

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Date:2004-06-13 11:38
Subject:Questions for Ali

I had this in my lj, but then thought it best to move it on over.

ager, agri, m. field farm

Does this mean we're talking:
agerus, ageri, agero, agerum, agero, ager
agrus, agri, agro, agrum, agro, agre

How do you know which is masculine forms nad which are feminine forms - I mean, take "friend" for example. Amica, amicae (f), or Amicus, amici (m) - when you decline them, aren't they going to look the same? Or is one first declension and the other second, in which case why do they both show up in this one?

For that matter, how do you know which declension to use?

Is it that, in the dictionary it shows up with Nom and Gen? Actually, is that Nom Sing and Gen Sing, or Nom Sing and Nom Plural? Or did you already tell us and i've forgotten? *confused*

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Date:2004-06-05 00:12
Subject:still stuck on the translation

me again, with my tattoo dilemma, i just want flawless latin text embalzoned on my skin. the question this time is thus - i want the text to read "forever my friend, my love." what i;ve got so far is "semper amica mea, amans mea." i have apersonal issue with the us marines, thus i want to drop semper. a friend suggested "aevi"
my question is does that nee dot be changed to a feminine inflection? if so what would it be? (aevitis?) thanks.

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Date:2004-06-02 19:08
Subject:translation please?

i'm having a hell of a time finding a Latin translator on the web, so I have one question. what is "my friend, my love" in latin? I'm guessing "mi _____, mi amore", because i know some french. but i'm not sure.

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Date:2004-05-30 01:01
Subject:Second Declension

These are the Masculine nouns and adjectives.

Masculine - populus magnus
Nom. - populus magnus (the great people)
Gen. - populi magni (of the great people)
Dat. - populo magno (to/for the great people)
Acc. - populum magnum (the great people)
Abl. - populo magno (with/by/from the great people)
Voc. - popule magne (O great people!)

Nom. - populi magni (the great peoples)
Gen. - populorum magnorum (of the great peoples)
Dat. - populis magnis (to/for the great peoples)
Acc. - populos magnos (the great peoples)
Abl. - populis magnis (with/by/from the great peoples)
Voc. - populi magni (O great peoples!)

Sadly, masculine nouns sometimes do weird things. Like end in -er. The word for boy, puer, is a good example. Some adjectives, such as pulcher ("pretty") also act this way.

In the case of puer, you simply add the endings right on. Puer, pueri, puero, etc. The major exception to the 2nd declension paradigm are these -er nouns. In the vocative singular, they do not have an ending, but keep the nominative form. "PUER"

The adjectives that act like this most commonly drop the "e" before adding the stems. So: pulcher, pulchri, pulchro, etc.

When you see adjectives, they usually list the different gendered forms. Most, if not all, adjectives have forms for all three genders, and they are listed MASCULINE, FEMININE, NEUTER. The adjective magnus, listed with the two genders we now see, will appear as magnus, magna. When you see one of those nasty first declension masculine nouns, such as "poets", remember that it is in fact masculine, and that you need to use a masculine adjective form.

And now here is the bit about commas. Here's a little grammatical device known as apposition.

"The poet, Catullus, is giving roses to the girls."

See how poet and Catullus are both nominative? It is the same subject, but in two different nouns. In English, we separate them with commas. And we shall do so in Latin as well. They always agree in case, usually in number, and often in gender as well.

A Couple Questions from the Last LessonCollapse )

Happy Latin!! Please check the vocab and grammar excercises for this chapter (chapter 3).

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Date:2004-05-29 02:29
Subject:Okay folks, one last time

Okay, folks. I leave tomorrow. I don't know how often I will be online.

If you want to get your sentences checked, please comment on the appropriate pst.

Tomorrow I will do second declension nouns, and then I don't know when you will see me again.

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Date:2004-05-18 12:15
Subject:Come on, guys

Just a couple of comments. Please?

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Date:2004-05-06 11:53
Subject:*dies of shame*
Mood: embarrassed

I'm such a bad teacher. I hope you can all bear with me here was I forget things I should have taught you. Poor Rei, I'm sorry you had to deal with this. But thanks for pointing it out to me.


Three major notes.

Starting at the smallest, please make a note regarding "est." We will be talkingmore about this verb very soon, but for now assume that the things on BOTH sides of the verb are the same case. it functions much like an equal sign. So the nominative nouns make anything ont he other side of the verb ALSO nominative. I believe the sentence I gave you was The ancient gate is large. Here both "ancient gate" and "large" are both nominative. Just strike the sentence from the list, actually, and we'll talk more about "est" later.

Secondly, and perhaps most importantly...

I've been following the general pattern of Wheelock's Latin, and I forgot, when I wrote out the first conjugation, that it also does the SECOND conjugation in the same chapter. It wouldn't matter except for the exercises and vocabulary assume that you know this. So here's the second declension.

Second Conjugation verbs ALL end in "ere" in the infinitive. Always. That is how you know. It's very important to memorize all the parts of a verb so that when you see it in another form you can remember what it looks like in the infinitive. The endings are the same, except for the characteristic "e".

first person singular (I) - O
second person singular (you) - S
third person singular (he, she, or it) - T
first person plural (we) - MUS
second person plural (you) - TIS
third person plural (they) - NT

Thus for the verb video the paradigm would look like this:
video "I see"
vides "You see"
videt "he/she/it sees"
videmus "we see"
videtis "you see"
vident "they see"

Note in the first person singluar, the "e" is still present. That is the other distinguishing characteristic of Second Conjugation verbs. When you see "eo" in the first person singular, it's Second Conjugation. And you need to remember which are which by memorizing all the principle parts.

The third thing which I forgot to tell you was how to form the imperative. The imperative is the tone of command. If I said "Give me your answers," "give" is an imperative verb.

Latin has both a singular and a plural form of the imperative. And after all the above, it's quite easy. All you do for the singular is drop the "re".

Thus, the singular imperative for our two verbs would be:
lauda or vide (Praise! OR See!)

The plural is formed by adding "te" to the stem. Thus:
laudate or videte (Praise! or See! addressing multiple people)

laudate me would be "Praise me!"
vide would be "See me!"

(And I put the !! in for emphasis. They're not always necessary.)

I'm sorry for the jumbled way of this. Please bear with me as I muddle through this too.

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Date:2004-05-05 15:38
Subject:Just a reminder...

In case you've forgotten.

I'm not going to put up anything further until tehre's a couple of responses on the last lesson.There's really not much point in you getting another declension if you don't understand the first one. I'd like to get the second declension up before I leave for Alaska, otherwise you'll probably have to wait till I get home, and that is a long time.


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Date:2004-04-27 20:18
Subject:Post Script to Lesson 2

Okay, I'm going to give you a couple of examples here, and a link to the vocab for this lesson. All the examples I'm going to give you from now on - and all the exercises - will be given assuming you have studied the lessons and the vocab thouroughly. If you're really serious about learning this, you need to know the vocab.

Lesson 2 Vocabulary
Please drill yourself

Now, here's a couple of corny sentences that should help you to work on what the declensions mean. Try to indicate somehow which case you think each noun is in. If you post them in a comment, I can correct them for you.

A. The poet is giving the girl large roses (or is giving large roses to the girl).
B. The girls are giving the poet's roses to the sailors.
C. Without money the girls' country (or the country of the girls) is not strong.


And here's a couple of sentences to translate. (Unfamiliar vocab is in parentheses, and is not part of the vocab exercises so you don't need to worry about memorizing them unless you want to.)
1. Fama et sententia volant. (Virgil. volare to fly, move quickly)
2. Clementia tua multas vitas servat. (Cicero. clementia, -ae mercy)
3. Me philosophiae do. (Seneca.)
4. Fortunam et vitam antiquae patriae saepe laudas sed recusas. (Horace. recusare to refuse, reject)
5. Sanam formam vitae conservate. (Seneca. sana, -ae sound, sane)
6. The girls save the poet's life.
7. Without philosophy we often go astray and pay the penalty.
8. If your land is strong, nothing terrfies the sailors and you ought to praise your good fortune.
9. We often see the penalty of anger.
10. The ancient gate is large.

For now, keep in mind the general syntax rule of Subject-Object-Verb (nom-acc-verb), that adjective generally follow their nouns and modifying nouns follow their principal noun. If you can't figure it out, just use the English word order. Syntax isn't a big deal right now, so don't worry too much. However, if you ARE able to approximate those rules, go for it.

And, as always, I can take questions here, by IM, or by email. (Here is usually good sicne other people can benefit from the question you ask.)

EDIT: As someone mentioned in the comments here, I am following the basic outline of Wheelock's Latin, 6th Edition. At least for now. When I type the lessons, I am writing them from my own head. This post is the exception, and while I am still trying to find suitable online exercises, the sentences above were selected from those in Wheelock. I forgot to properly credit this when I wrote it, and for that I apologize.

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Date:2004-04-27 18:50
Subject:Lesson 2 - First Declension Nouns and Adjectives

Alright folks. By now I hope you've taken the time to look over the verbs and memorize the paradigm. I'd just like to take a moment and adress a question a couple of you raised with last week's lesson.Collapse )*


Okay. Now then. I hope we've all mastered the definition of a noun as "person, place, or thing" and an adjective as "something that describes a noun." If not, go directly to Madlibs, do not pass go, do not collect $200.

But I'm going to make you stretch your minds a bit further. We're going to talk now about what it is exactly that nouns DO.

Nouns do different things in a sentence. The different functions of nouns are called cases. All these cases have names. And we're going a bit beyond subject-object now.

There are 6 cases of nouns.

Nominative - The subject. This is the noun that does something.
Genetive - When one noun is used to modify another, we use the genetive case. The most common idea conveyed by this case is that of possession. Generally, while there are other ways of modifying nouns than possession, you can use the prefix "of" in English.
Dative - These nouns are indirectly affected by the action of the verb. Nouns that would begin with "to" or "for" are the most common English equivalents.
Accusative - The direct object. This is the thing that is done to by the action of the verb. It can be affected by certain prepositions.
Ablative - This is the case that often limits or modifys the verb by such ideas as means ("by what"), agent ("by whom"), manner ("how"), accompaniment ("with whom"), place ("where"), or in other ways that we will discover as we go along. In English it usually has a preposition, though in Latin that is not always the case.
Vocative - This is the case of direct address. If I wanted to say "Jani, get me the book" that is direct address.

Now, learning these cases is vital. Absolutely critical. Because in English we have very strict word order. We know what is what in a sentence by where it is in relation to the verb, or by the prepositions attached to it. In Latin, this is not the case. Some of the cases are easier to understand than others, and the ablative in particular you will grow to hate so much that you love it.

Latin sentences follow a general rule of Subject-Object-Verb, but this is highly flexible. (The verb was often kept till the end to create a feeling of suspense.) The way they figured out what did what was in the noun itself. (You should also note that adjectives do the same things as nouns.) I welcome you all to the migraine that is DECLENSIONS.

Anyone who's taken a Romance language before should be familiar with the concept of gendered nouns and adjectives. Latin nouns have gender, and the adjectives always match that gender. The first declension, which we are doing today, is almost completely feminine.** We will use the example of porta magna ("large gate") to show the declension.

Nom -a (porta magna, "the (a)*** large gate")
Gen -ae (portae magnae, "of the large gate")
Dat -ae (portae magnae, "to/for the large gate")
Acc -am (portam magnam "the large gate")
Abl -a (porta magna, "by/with/from/etc. the large gate")
Voc -a (porta magna, "O large gate")
Nom -ae (portae magnae, "the large gates")
Gen -arum (portarum magnarum, "of the large gates")
Dat -is (portis magnis, "to/for the large gates")
Acc -as (portas magnas, "the large gates")
Abl -is (portis magnis, "by/with/from/etc. the large gates")
Voc -ae (portae magnae, "O large gates")

That's the paradigm. And I know you've been given a lot here, and if you're anything like me, it really makes your head hurt. We're not used to thinking of nouns like this in English. But you'll get used to it, I promise, if you can just put a bit of effort into it now.

FootnotesCollapse )

I'll post a couple examples in another post, since this one is getting really really long.

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Date:2004-04-22 15:56

Okay, I'm a bit slower than I promised, and for that I apologize. I was attempting to find an online vocabulary listing that would run with the lessons I'm typing.

Since I learned from the text "Wheelock's Latin," that is how I am teaching you folks. And today I managed to find an online resource for that text. It's a great site.

So, each lesson I will post a link to the specific vocab list for the chapter we are working on.

Chapter One - First Congjugation Verbs You'll note that there is more than just verbs here. Learn the other words too, please. You'll need them later.

Also, THIS is the page where you can find all the chapters. THIS is the parent page where you can find drills and exercises for your vocab learning. Explore a bit. I'll be sure to tell you what chapter we are on as we go.

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