Appositions

Symposion

Active Member

What is an Apposition? I have tried to read into that but because I am not a linguist I do not understand the jargon so well. Sadly I am not good at Latin I notice now. That is not good! I guess that I mix those up with Attributes or just two words generally that goes together in a sentence! If I understand Pacifica correctly. I am crap! Please enlighten me...
 

MIB

Member

ad + ponere = to put next to. It's a noun that means the same thing as another noun (or pronoun).
"Smith, the driver, hit the brakes in time." In the previous sentence, 'driver' and 'Smith' are the same thing here, and the second describes the first. In Latin it's put in the same case as the noun to which it is in apposition.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima

  • Civis Illustris

  • Patrona

No. Those two things have nothing to do with each other.
 

Symposion

Active Member

Well on English Wikipedia is mentioned "Apposition is a figure of speech of the scheme type, and often results when the verbs (particularly verbs of being) in supporting clauses are eliminated to produce shorter descriptive phrases. This makes them often function as hyperbatons, or figures of disorder, because they can disrupt the flow of a sentence. For example, in the phrase: "My wife, a surgeon by training, ...", it is necessary to pause before the parenthetical modification "a surgeon by training"." My cursive is an highlight in regard why I asked if appositions functions as hyberbatons in Latin.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima

  • Civis Illustris

  • Patrona

Hm. Well, I suppose you can argue that an apposition may cause a hyperbaton to be produced, for instance by separating the verb from the subject as in "My wife, a surgeon by training, says that..." Yes, I guess that's arguable even though I'm a little unsure if that does indeed count as a hyperbaton. In any case, though, an apposition is not a hyperbaton.
 

Symposion

Active Member

I think that I have misunderstood appositions in the past because in my Latin book is written that appositions are like nouns, adjectives and participles that are at the same time defined both by verbs and the main word nouns. It also shows in what action or state the main word is to the action or state shown by the verb. The apposition follows the genus, number and case of it main word noun. Appositions can be nouns, adjectives and participles. I translated this from my book so I hope that you will understand my attempt of translating a text that I do not understand much of into English for you.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima

  • Civis Illustris

  • Patrona

Yes, I understand. Personally, I wouldn't have called participia coniuncta appositions, but I can see how they are somehow akin to appositions and maybe they're officially called that at least by some.
 

Symposion

Active Member

A present participle can function as an apposition or Participium coniunctum according to my book. For example:

Quis mortem metuens beatus esse potest?

Multorum te oculi non sentientem custodient?

Sequani absentis Ariovisti crudelitatem horrebant.

Consul regi pacem petenti respondit eam dari non posse.

This according to my Ars grammatica book. I have translated this part for you into English.
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris

  • Civis Illustris

  • Patronus

They are in my Latin Ars Grammatica book.
Hmmm ... I'd like to see the page of that book ... must be a weird book if it also claims that appositions have to agree in gender and number with the word they are appositive to. They actually only have the agree with the case.
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris

  • Civis Illustris

  • Patronus

A present participle can function as an apposition or Participium coniunctum according to my book. For example:

Quis mortem metuens beatus esse potest?

Multorum te oculi non sentientem custodient?

Sequani absentis Ariovisti crudelitatem horrebant.

Consul regi pacem petenti respondit eam dari non posse.

This according to my Ars grammatica book. I have translated this part for you into English.
None of these would be considered appositions.
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris

  • Civis Illustris

  • Patronus

On German Wikipedia is also written and in English translation by Google translator:

This article considers a relative clause to be an apposition, which is even worse.

Apart from that, it merely says that you can translate a PC with an apposition in German, not that the PC is an apposition.
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris

  • Civis Illustris

  • Patronus

The German examples on that wiki-page actually show what an apposition is and what not (I'm talking about the sample sentences, not the badly-written article). In the sentence "Tantalus, in die Hölle geschickt, erlitt Strafen.", you have an apposition indeed because the participle comes as an after-thought to Tantalus and has to be pronounced with a slight speech pause in the places where the commata are. However, while this might be theoretically possible, it's rather unnatural German -- the kind of German you usually only find in the Latin translation attempts of students who are overwhelmed with the task of properly rendering a Latin sentence in regular German word order. I remember that my Greek teacher actually hated those constructions to the core.

The more natural translation would be to use a participle construction in German as well, which would require a change in word order: "In die Hölle geschickt erlitt Tantalus Strafen." -- That would be the regular German sentence, and here, the participle construction is not and cannot be an apposition because it does not even stand appositive to the noun (it is set off by the verb).

Likewise, while in textbook Latin a participium coniunctum often follows a noun directly and could in such a position theoretically be pronounced like an apposition, it can in reality actually stand anywhere in the sentence - mainly due to the fact that it is not an apposition. So, instead of "Tantalus ad Tartara missus poenas dedit" I could also construct this sentence as "Tantalus poenas dedit ad Tartara missus"
 
Last edited:

Bitmap

Civis Illustris

  • Civis Illustris

  • Patronus

Another thing is that a PC always has to agree in number, genus and case with the noun it refers to while an apposition only has to agree in case (though it will try to agree in number and gender as well if it can - but it can't always do that). So a sentence like "Adrianum, delicias meas, valde amo" is possible despite the disagreement in number and gender because you're dealing with an apposition, while no such scenario exists for a PC.
 
Last edited:
Top