A Greek detour

Matthaeus

Vemortuicida strenuus
Futurum activum modi imperativi, itane? Be thou cast, die! :)
So he wasn't declaring that the die is actually cast, but that it was more of a command, with even more emphasis since it's in the future imperative? That's how I see it.
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
mattheus dixit:
Futurum activum modi imperativi, itane? Be thou cast, die! :)
So he wasn't declaring that the die is actually cast, but that it was more of a command, with even more emphasis since it's in the future imperative? That's how I see it.
alea iacta esto is the translation my dictionary gave me, in which you can find this phrase if you look up κύβος. But esto is meant to be the third person singular future imperative here, I suppose. My Ancient Greek morphology has become a bit rusty, so I had to consult a grammar.
Ancient Greek doesn't have a future imperative like Latin, but it has a third person present imperative. I don't actually know which compound verb ἀνερρiφθω comes from, and I failed to find it in a dictionary, but I know its simplex ῥίπτω, to throw, which would become ῤιφθω in the 3rd pers. sing. imp. present (medium/)passive if I'm not mistaken.

In other words, the translation from Lacus Curtius that I quoted above seems to be appropriate. "(Let) the die be cast"

I assume one might also translate that as "alea iaciatur"
 

Imber Ranae

Ranunculus Iracundus
Bitmap dixit:
alea iacta esto is the translation my dictionary gave me, in which you can find this phrase if you look up κύβος. But esto is meant to be the third person singular future imperative here, I suppose. My Ancient Greek morphology has become a bit rusty, so I had to consult a grammar.
Ancient Greek doesn't have a future imperative like Latin, but it has a third person present imperative. I don't actually know which compound verb ἀνερρiφθω comes from, and I failed to find it in a dictionary, but I know its simplex ῥίπτω, to throw, which would become ῤιφθω in the 3rd pers. sing. imp. present (medium/)passive if I'm not mistaken.

In other words, the translation from Lacus Curtius that I quoted above seems to be appropriate. "(Let) the die be cast"

I assume one might also translate that as "alea iaciatur"
The verb is ἀναρρίπτω and this is actually an instance of the rare perfect imperative, from the perfect stem ἀνερριπ- + [σ]θω (3rd sing.). The perfect imperative expresses a command that is felt to be decisive and permanent, so it's a bit like the Latin future imperative as used for general directions that serve for all time (as opposed to the idea of particular future time).
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
Thank you very much for joining this debate and explaining this expression. I was afraid my Ancient Greek wouldn't be good enough to really get this right. :)
 

Cornelia

New Member
Actually this Julius Caesar's quote is very common in modern greek language,many people use it.It's actually ''ο κύβος ερρίφθη'',''ερρίφθη'' is,as you impressively right mentioned,the the passive past tense of ''ρίπτω-ρίπτομαι'',neutral(the ''it'' gender,but not necessarily a thing,can refer to a human being or so)3rd singular.IsΙ think Julius Caesar said it when he passed the Rubicon river along with his soldiers,contrary to the Roman Law in which it was made clear that every head of the Roman forces coming from the North to Italy should indispensably wind up his troops before walking on Rubicon's bridge.He did not,and so he said that as the signal to the start of his years of ''caesarism''! :p So today(at least in my country)we say that in cases when after a lot of thinking and uncertainty an irrevocable decision is obtained,with full apprehension of the effects.
 

Chamaeleo

New Member
divinityofnumber dixit:
Brings to mind the classic Churchill quote....

“By being so long in the lowest form [at Harrow] I gained an immense advantage over the cleverer boys.... I got into my bones the essential structure of the ordinary British sentence — which is a noble thing. Naturally I am biased in favor of boys learning English; I would make them all learn English: and then I would let the clever ones learn Latin as an honor, and Greek as a treat.”

- Sir Winston Churchill -
That doesn't look very noble. Are you sure that's actually a Churchill quotation? :|
 
Top