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Latin Grammar & Declensions

There are 7 classes of words that make up sentences, “cases” and depending where they are used in a sentence the suffix of the word should change to denote such.

Nominative

A restricted noun denoting the subject of a sentence and it is indirect

for example “Caesar went to the store” and usually coming before a verb such as went.

Vocative

Another restricted noun used for addressing a person directly

for example “Caesar, are you going to the store?”

Accusative

The other nouns, while nominative is a restricted noun the other aspects of a sentence are accusative

for example “Caesar purchased a boat

and usually coming after a verb such as purchased.

Genetive

Denotes possession such as with the word “of”

for example “The dog of the man”.

Remember Latin has no articles whatsoever, the “of” is represented instead in the suffix of dog to denote ownership and their is no “The”

Dative

Denotes “to” or “for” relative to an indirect object

for example “The gift is for you” or “Give to me the book”

Ablative

Denotes separation such as “by”, “with”, “from”, “in” and “on”

Locative

A place where the action is being performed

Conjugations and Declensions

Latin is an inflected language, that is; special information is conveyed by modifying words, we do it everyday in English when we alter a sentence to indicate tense, gender, plurals. To reference a male with the word “she” is an error.

Latin has no articles, instead the suffix of a word will change according to “declensions” so that they convey our intentions correctly. For example the difference between I call and we call would be voco and vocamus. The suffix changed to provide that information. So how does this all work, here it comes…

Five declension are words ending in a, e , i , o, u are changed according to a specific table

  • There are five declensions and four conjugations.
  • Declensions are a system for organising nouns. Conjugations are a system for organising verbs
  • Declensions have cases (Nominative, Genitive, Dative, Accusative, Ablative) which can be singular or plural. (They also have small variances based on whether the noun is Masculine, Feminine or Neuter)
  • Conjugations have 1st, 2nd, & 3rd person which can be singular or plural. They also have six tenses (present, past, etc)

so how do we remember all of this, answer we don't, we use the language and copy as others do, academically refining when its usage is believed like the concept of common sense…logically.

☆ ★ ☆ While we are here, why don't we revisit our English cases? ☆ ★ ☆

What is a noun (nomina)?

A noun is a word used to name a person, animal, place, thing, and abstract idea. The highlighted words in the following sentence are all nouns:

According to Plutarch, the library at Alexandria was destroyed in 48 B.C.

A noun can function in a sentence as a subject, a direct object, an indirect object, a subject complement, an object complement, an appositive, an adjective or an adverb.

What is a progressive noun or pronouns (pronomina)?

A pronoun is changing a noun to for example communicate ownership such as adding an apostophe s to a noun. Here is an example

Cassandra owns the red suitcase or the red suitcase belongs to Cassandra can be changed to use a pronoun as follows

The red suitcase is Cassandra's.

What is a verb (verba)?

A verb gives information on what a noun is doing. For example…

Dracula bites his victims on the neck.

What is an adverb (adverbia)?

An adverb makes a sentence more interesting by being more descriptive. For example…

The midwives waited patiently through a long labour.

While the verb waited suffices, the adverb patiently adds insight.

What is an adjective (adiectiva)?

An adjective describes a noun. For example…

The race car was fast and loud

Conjunctions (coniunctiones) vs Prepositions (praepositiones)

Conjunctions and prepositions are both a set of words used to link words in a sentence. While conjunctions are used to connect words, phrases, or clauses, prepositions are used to show the relation of a noun or pronoun to other words in a sentence, a preposition usually indicates the temporal, spatial or logical relationship of its object to the rest of the sentence as in the following examples:. Here are two examples…

Conjunction: Lilacs and violets are usually purple.
Preposition: The book is on the table.

A prepositional phrase can function as a noun, an adjective, or an adverb. The most common prepositions are “about,” “above,” “across,” “after,” “against,” “along,” “among,” “around,” “at,” “before,” “behind,” “below,” “beneath,” “beside,” “between,” “beyond,” “but,” “by,” “despite,” “down,” “during,” “except,” “for,” “from,” “in,” “inside,” “into,” “like,” “near,” “of,” “off,” “on,” “onto,” “out,” “outside,” “over,” “past,” “since,” “through,” “throughout,” “till,” “to,” “toward,” “under,” “underneath,” “until,” “up,” “upon,” “with,” “within,” and “without.”

Common conjunctions include “and,” “but,” “or,” “nor,” “for,” “so,” “yet” “after,” “although,” “as,” “because,” “before,” “how,” “if,” “once,” “since,” “than,” “that,” “though,” “till,” “until,” “when,” “where,” “whether,” and “while.”

What is an Interjection (interiectiones)?

Finally: An interjection is a word added to a sentence to convey emotion. It is not grammatically related to any other part of the sentence. You usually follow an interjection with an exclamation mark. Interjections are uncommon in formal academic prose, except in direct quotations. For example…

Ouch, that hurt!

latin_grammer.txt · Last modified: 2019/03/23 09:47 (external edit)