Selections from Viri Romae

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Author: Various Authors
Published: 1896
Language: Latin
Wordcount: 123,313 / 504 pg
LoC Category: PA
Downloads: 657
Added to site: 2010.08.01
mnybks.net#: 28590
Origin: gutenberg.org
Genre: Language

The results of classical study most valuable to the character are surely not to be found in the ability, usually lost after a few years, to recite paradigms faultlessly, to give the principal parts of verbs, and to enumerate the various kinds of cum-constructions and the subdivisions of the ablative. Of far greater worth are the mental breadth and sympathy, the weakening of prejudice and Philistinism, and the increased power of entering into higher forms of enjoyment which must inevitably flow from the study of the life of a great people as revealed in its literature and art.

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the act was we know also exactly why it was performed. The Latin thus pictures the parts of the scene in their true order, for the motive in every case precedes the act. We see therefore that, however strange at times the Latin order may seem to be, there is always good reason for it. It is our task at the outset, as it soon will be our pleasure, to determine just what this reason is.

Now this freer order of words in the Latin sentence is rendered possible by the fact that Latin possesses an elaborate inflectional system, whereas English does not. Note, however, that one familiar with Latin declensions would know at once that in the first sentence discussed above Proca was actor (i.e. subject), and Numitor and Amulius acted upon (i.e. object). So in the sentence ut . . . fêcit it is clear that Amulius is the actor and that Rhea Silvia is acted upon. Thus the inflectional system serves to relieve, in part at least, the very difficulty which

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