Tacitus 1.9

Phoebus Apollo

Civis Illustris
pauca admodum vi tractata quo ceteris quies esset.

I think this is a purpose clause, but I can't figure out why it's quo and not ut, since there is no comparative? Unless 'quo' is a relative, with vi as the antecedent ('with/through which (force) there was peace for the rest')?


Civis Illustris
I'm not familiar with Tacitus's style, but seeing just that little bit of text, I also think it is a purpose clause. quo can do that; look here under II. B and II. B,2:


B. Trop., to what end, for what purpose, wherefore, why: “quid hoc homine facias? aut quo civemimportunum, aut quo potius hostem tam sceleratum reserves?” Cic. Sest. 13, 29: “quo tantam pecuniam?”Cic. Verr. 2, 2, 55, § 137: “dixit profecto, quo vellet aurum,” id. Cael. 21, 53: “nescis, quo valeatnummus? quem praebeat usum?” what money is good for, Hor. S. 1, 1, 73: “quo mihi fortunam, si nonconceditur uti?” id. Ep. 1, 5, 12; Cic. Fam 7, 23, 2; Ov. Am. 3, 4, 41.—
2. Transf., to the end that, in order that, so that, that: “quo deteriores anteponantur bonis,” Plaut. Poen. prol. 38; Ter. And. 3, 1, 14: “id adjuta me, quo id flat facilius,” id. Eun. 1, 2, 70: “quomare finiat iram,” Ov. H. 18, 203: “fraus mea quid petiit, nisi quo tibi jungerer uni?” id. ib. 20, 23: “hi omnes Athenas se contulerunt, non quo sequerentur otium,” Nep. Pelop. 2, 1: “quo ne, = ut ne: sed eo vidisti multum, quod praefinisti, quo ne pluris emerem,” Cic. Fam. 7, 2, 1: “cautum erat, quone plus auri et argenti facti, quo ne plus signati argenti et aeris domi haberemus,” Liv. 34, 9.—


Staff member
Unless 'quo' is a relative, with vi as the antecedent ('with/through which (force) there was peace for the rest')?
Note that that's impossible, as the genders wouldn't match.


Civis Illustris
Staff member
I read this passage in the gym on Tuesday and looked it up afterwards. It's a purpose clause. It's quoted in "An Advanced Latin Syntax" by Francis and Tatum with the following comment "This ablative [eo, quo, etc] is used by Tacitus without any comparison expressed." See here.


Civis Illustris
I think it means like "by which" or something, using a neuter singular to refer to all the previous clause. You can translate it as a purpose clause ofc, since it basically means the same.