is 'quinque diebus' dative here? Ovid Fasti 6.144

Phoebus Apollo

Civis Illustris
Proca natus in illis praeda recens avium quinque diebus erat...

I took it to be dative, so it works out like: 'Proca had been born for five days...' (ie Proca was five years old) - but could it also be some sort of ablative of time ('in five days')?


legātus armisonus
I suspect it might be an ablative too. Recēns can be used with ab + ablative to express "shortly after", so it's possible this would be "Proca, born, shortly after five days" but without the ab. Note that the idiom to say "X years old" is X annōs nātus though.


Staff member
I suppose quinque diebus could go with recens, the phrase meaning literally something like "five days young" or it could be an ablative of quality to Proca. The former may be more likely but it isn't all clear to me. At any rate, though, the basic idea is clear: Proca was five days old when this happened.

In any case, in no way could it be dative. The dative is never used to express duration in Latin (when in English you would say "for such and such a length of time").