On the kind "negotium hominis est volere quid creare melius, quam is."

By Wilahelmaz, in 'General Latin Chat (English)', May 12, 2018.

  1. Wilahelmaz Member

    Saluete,

    Is this kind of sentence, "negotium hominis est volere quid creare melius, quam is.", normal in some time of Latin? Otherwise how would "the business of man is wanting to create something better, than he." be said?
  2. Pacifica grammaticissima

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    Belgium
    Salve,
    No.
    For example: hominis est velle aliquid se ipso melius facere.
  3. Wilahelmaz Member

    (oops let that "volere" slip!)

    Thank you, Pacifica. I thought so. But, were it of the "quam" kind, it would be "quam is"? Or by what reason would this never be with "quam"?
  4. Dantius Homo Sapiens

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    in orbe lacteo
    Probably quam se ipsum, as what follows the quam is generally in the same case as what's being compared – here, aliquid in the acc.
  5. Pacifica grammaticissima

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    Belgium
    Either that (through the usual attraction) or quam ipse est.
  6. Wilahelmaz Member

    Thank you, Dantius and Pacifica. That is my main doubt. "Quam ipse" seems rational, because "quam ipsum" ("him" : object) is referred to "creare" ("wanting to create something better, than he creates himself", which is not the meaning here) and "quam ipse" is referred to the goodness of man ("quam ipse bonus est").
  7. Pacifica grammaticissima

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    Belgium
    The attraction into the accusative usually happens even despite of logic. I can't say that quam ipse is impossible, but when the nominative is used, more usually the verb is there as well (so, quam ipse est).
  8. Wilahelmaz Member

    Right, "quam ipse (bonus) est". Do you, Pacifica, remember some openly irrational example of that attraction?
  9. Pacifica grammaticissima

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    Belgium
    I couldn't remember any specific examples (it's just one of those things that you see all the time and don't make a note of) but, searching for quam se in the Latin Library, this was the first relevant result I found, from Seneca the Elder:

    intervenientibus amicis, qui ad hoc spectaculum concurrerant, et rogantibus dixi molestum me amplius non futurum, si iurasset disertiorem esse Ciceronem quam se

    Quam se = quam ipse esset; he can't really be implying si iurasset disertiorem esse Ciceronem quam se esse disertum iurasset, which hardly makes sense.
  10. Wilahelmaz Member

    Hmm... Thank you, Pacifica.
  11. Pacifica grammaticissima

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    Belgium
    That was a bit sloppily said. An attraction always happens in spite of logic, by definition; otherwise it isn't even an attraction, just a regular use of a case (or mood etc.).
    Last edited by Pacifica, May 12, 2018
    Wilahelmaz likes this.

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