quibus moriendum esset

By massimo.p, in 'Latin to English Translation', Feb 26, 2019.

  1. massimo.p Member

    This is an example sentence taken from Bennett's grammar. Can anybody tell me why the word "who" in the relative clause is rendered in what appears to be either the dative or ablative case? Thank you.

    "si solos eos diceres miseros, quibus moriendum esset, neminem tu quidem eorum qui viverent exciperes."
  2. Dantius Homo Sapiens

    • Civis Illustris
    Location:
    in orbe lacteo
    It's the dative of agent with the passive periphrastic moriendum esset. Very literally, it means "by whom it has to be died." Obviously, that makes no sense in English, so you can translate it as "who have to die".

    When a verb is intransitive, it is often used impersonally in the passive periphrastic. Like militibus pugnandum est for "the soldiers must fight".
    Matthaeus likes this.

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