In Catilinam I: Reading Thread

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I'm not sure what you mean, Godmy. In something like quae libido, quae IS an adjective, agreeing in gender, number and case with a noun, and it has a meaning of its own ("which"/"what"... is a meaning...).
 

Godmy

A Monkey
Well, it is a syntactic adjective, agreeing in gender, number and case. But it, on its own, doesn't assign any property, any meaning to the noun and adjective commonly needs to do that, instead it is a kind of pro-form. So semantically it is not adjective and semantics is quite usually the key aspect which decides which part of speech the given word generally is. So yes, its syntactic behavior & function is an adjective, but semantically it still remains a pronoun so we rather say that it IS a pronoun, which behaves here as an adjective (or a syntactic adjective if you wish).

The similar can be asserted also about meus, tuus, suus...
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
[15] Potestne tibi haec lux, Catilina, aut huius caeli spiritus esse iucundus, cum scias esse horum neminem, qui nesciat te pridie Kalendas Ianuarias Lepido et Tullo consulibus stetisse in comitio cum telo, manum consulum et principum civitatis interficiendorum causa paravisse, sceleri ac furori tuo non mentem aliquam aut timorem tuum sed fortunam populi Romani obstitisse?

Perseus gives:
"... that you had prepared your hand for the slaughter of the consuls and chief men of the state..."

Which makes sense, but I don't see how the causa fits in. "With/by cause" doesn't make any sense..."purposefully"?

Also, general note to any other students reading this thread: this site contains the text with some useful footnotes (unfortunately nothing that helps here, though...)
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Genitive + causa = literally "by cause of" = for the sake of, in order to...
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
Genitive + causa = literally "by cause of" = for the sake of, in order to...
Thanks :)

Something I'm not getting here:

Quid, quod adventu tuo ista subsellia vacuefacta sunt, quod omnes consulares, qui tibi persaepe ad caedem constituti fuerunt, simul atque adsedisti, partem istam subselliorum nudam atque inanem reliquerunt, quo tandem animo [hoc] tibi ferundum putas?

Perseus splits it up into a series of small questions:

"Is it nothing that at your arrival all those seats were vacated? that all the men of consular rank, who had often been marked out by you for slaughter, the very moment you sat down, left that part of the benches bare and vacant? With what feelings do you think you ought to bear this?"

But this doesn't really seem to be how the Latin sentence is constructed, and I don't understand how the Quid... at the start fits in with the rest of it; it seems to begin a question that isn't ever really completed ("What...")

What's going on here?

I'm also not sure about the tibi I've bolded later on; "marked out for slaughter for you" (i.e. for your benefit/purposes), maybe? The Perseus translation, which says "by you", would seem to imply ablative...
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Quid quod...? = what about the fact that...?

The dative is sometimes used for the agent of a perfect participle, a bit similarly to what happens with gerundives. Literally "to/for you" but implying you're the agent as well.
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
Quid quod...? = what about the fact that...?

The dative is sometimes used for the agent of a perfect participle, a bit similarly to what happens with gerundives. Literally "to/for you" but implying you're the agent as well.
Ah, ok. Had never seen either of those. Thanks :)
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
Just a note to say I'm more than halfway though! :confused:

I just finished section 17. No questions (and I've been needing to look up vocabulary less, too). This is getting a lot easier.

Thanks to all that have helped so far. You guys are awesome! :)
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
(Oh, and for the last paragraph, I didn't even think to look at the English translation -- since I'd understood the Latin perfectly well -- until I posted here and thought, "Yeah, I guess I really should go look and compare to make sure, LOL...." :D )

Which is probably a good sign. :)
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
Heh, it's been a while since I posted in here. Still steadily working my way through this (after taking a bit of a break for Augustine.) :)

Anyway, something small in section 20 of the Cicero:

"Refer" inquis "ad senatum"; id enim postulas et, si hic ordo [sibi] placere decreverit te ire in exilium, optemperaturum te esse dicis. Non referam, id quod abhorret a meis moribus, et tamen faciam, ut intellegas, quid hi de te sentiant.

Perseus gives the following:
"I will not make such a motion, it is contrary to my principles, and yet I will let you see what these men think of you."

While I had understood something more like:
"I would not make such a motion, because it is contrary to my principles; and yet I will do (this thing), in order that you may know what these men think of you."

The problem, of course, is that referam can be either future (which is how the Perseus translator understood it) or subjunctive (which is how I understood it) and the remainder of the sentence doesn't exactly remove the ambiguity. Is there any way to definitively tell which he meant? (Other than, I suppose, by historical context or perhaps the remainder of the speech; but I mean anything in this particular sentence...)
 

Etaoin Shrdlu

Civis Illustris
I took it as future, because in the first place it's parallel with faciam, and in the second, because I don't know of a parallel for the present subjunctive used in the sense you give it. Faciam ut intellegas is an idiom, so I wouldn't break it down the way you seem to be doing.
 

malleolus

Civis Illustris
For me, it's future. If it were subjunctive then Cicero being Cicero would have used the subjunctive in the id quod...a meis moribus as well.

Catiline asked for a proper discussion of Cicero's illegal command to leave Rome in the Senate.The Senate had no legal power to send a Roman citizen into exile and Catiline would be under no obligation to obey such a decree if issued.I think that Cicero may have simply wanted to avoid such a situation by evading Catiline's request and focusing on his own "moral integrity".
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
I took it as future, because in the first place it's parallel with faciam, and in the second, because I don't know of a parallel for the present subjunctive used in the sense you give it. Faciam ut intellegas is an idiom, so I wouldn't break it down the way you seem to be doing.
Ah, ok, didn't know that (about it being an idiom) -- I guess it means "I will do [i.e. do what is necessary] in order that you may know..." i.e. "I will cause you to know..."

For me, it's future. If it were subjunctive then Cicero being Cicero would have used the subjunctive in the id quod...a meis moribus as well.
That's a really good point, makes sense.

Catiline asked for a proper discussion of Cicero's illegal command to leave Rome in the Senate.The Senate had no legal power to send a Roman citizen into exile and Catiline would be under no obligation to obey such a decree if issued.I think that Cicero may have simply wanted to avoid such a situation by evading Catiline's request and focusing on his own moral integrity.
Also very interesting. I didn't know Cicero's command was illegal (or that such a decree from the Senate would have no legal force.) It seems odd that the Senate would have the power to kill a Roman citizen, since Cicero repeatedly talks about the Senate already having issued a decree (as yet unused) to kill Cataline (e.g. in section 4: "Habemus enim huiusce modi senatus consultum, verum inclusum in tabulis tamquam in vagina reconditum, quo ex senatus consulto confestim te interfectum esse, Catilina, convenit"), but that they wouldn't have the power to send one into exile.
 

Etaoin Shrdlu

Civis Illustris
The US federal government, and various state governments, have the power to put citizens to death, but not to send them into exile.
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
The US federal government, and various state governments, have the power to put citizens to death, but not to send them into exile.
Does the US government actually have the legal right to order a citizen killed without a trial? Wouldn't this be unconstitutional?

(I'm not saying it wouldn't happen, as in the case of Anwar al-Awlaki, but only that it's at best pretty dubious indeed, and at worst simply illegal.)
 

Etaoin Shrdlu

Civis Illustris
The point is that even when there's a trial, exile is not an option open to the judge when passing sentence. It may not be an exact parallel, but the principle is there.
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
The point is that even when there's a trial, exile is not an option open to the judge when passing sentence. It may not be an exact parallel, but the principle is there.
Ah, I see what you mean. True.
 

Callaina

Feles Curiosissima
Catiline asked for a proper discussion of Cicero's illegal command to leave Rome in the Senate.The Senate had no legal power to send a Roman citizen into exile and Catiline would be under no obligation to obey such a decree if issued.I think that Cicero may have simply wanted to avoid such a situation by evading Catiline's request and focusing on his own "moral integrity".
Why was the Senate so reluctant to act openly against Cataline, anyway (if they had the power to kill him)? I mean, wasn't it obvious to everyone what he was planning? Cicero certainly makes it sound like it was...
 
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