putavit vs. putaret (Prendergast #101 and 120)

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
Why in #101 is it putavit, but in #120 it is putaret? I understand that putavit is perfect indicative, and putaret is imperfect subjunctive. Does the fact that 120 is reporting what "he thought" make it indirect discourse, requiring the subjunctive? But then wouldn't "he supposed" require the same treatment?

101. He indeed handed over to the steward to be scourged his own slave, whom he supposed to be going to attack him by night.
Hīc quidem villicō servum suum flagellandum mandāvit quem sē noctū oppugnātūrum esse putāvit.

120. Whom did the tyrant lately cause to be put to death, because he thought he would attack him?
Quem nuper tyrannus necandum curavit, quem se oppugnaturum esse putaret?

(Text VI, pp. 12-13, of The Mastery Series. Latin. By Thomas Prendergast. Fourth edition, 1880. Retrieved Jan. 1, 2021.)

Also, would imperfect indicative putabat make equally good sense in #101, and perfect subjunctive putaverit equally good in #120?

(And do these questions belong here, or in "Latin Grammar Questions"?)
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
That is the difference. With the indicative, it's a "simple" relative clause, whereas with the subjunctive it's a causal relative clause.
Also, would imperfect indicative putabat make equally good sense in #101
Yes. My instinct is that it would even be more likely, in general, though I wouldn't say that the perfect is definitely wrong.
and perfect subjunctive putaverit equally good in #120?
Hm, no, it's more natural to have a sequence of tenses depending on the perfect curavit, hence secondary sequence. I guess it isn't entirely impossible for the clause to be considered from the point of view of the present utterance rather than of back then when the thing happened, and therefore to take the primary sequence, but it might be a little far-fetched (not the most obvious thing to do, at least).
(And do these questions belong here, or in "Latin Grammar Questions"?)
I wouldn't say that this type of question is quite at the beginner level anymore, so maybe it would better belong in "Latin Grammar Questions", but it's subjective, I guess.
 

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
Thanks. The distinction between "whom" and "because" is shedding light on many of the sentences in this text that I was having trouble with!

But there are a couple that do not seem to fit this pattern:

107. The boy announced that the slave, whom he thought the best of all, had wounded him by night by the river.
Puer nuntiavit, servum quem optimum putaret se ipsum noctu ad fluvium vulneravisse.

127. Because thy cubicle was being burnt, thy servant hastened through the town to beg for help.
Quod cubiculum tuum cremabatur, servus tuus per oppidum properavit auxilium oraturus.

In 107, he uses the subjunctive putaret, although the boy's thinking the slave was the best does not seem to figure into any explanation of why he had wounded him. But in 127, the indicative cremabatur, although clearly the burning is the reason for the slave's hastening through the town. Can you shed further light?
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
107. The boy announced that the slave, whom he thought the best of all, had wounded him by night by the river.
Puer nuntiavit, servum quem optimum putaret se ipsum noctu ad fluvium vulneravisse.
Here the subjunctive is because of the indirect speech. Or I suppose you could argue that it is concessive, but more probably it's just the former.
127. Because thy cubicle was being burnt, thy servant hastened through the town to beg for help.
Quod cubiculum tuum cremabatur, servus tuus per oppidum properavit auxilium oraturus.
Quod as a conjunction typically takes the indicative. Causal (as well as concessive) relative clauses with the relative pronoun qui, quae, quod take the subjunctive.
 

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
I see it now -- the "whom he thought" is part of what the boy announced! Also, good to know about quod taking the indicative.
Gratias ago tibi, O Pacifica grammaticissima!
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
You're welcome. It's always nice to have you around here. It had been some time.
 

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
But as for quod taking the indicative, alas, I'm not yet out of the woods.

083 Who is there here who can blame my cousin even in the least for having caused the slave to be liberated?
Quis hic est qui sobrinum meum vel paullum culpet quod servum liberandum curaverit?

093 Let not anyone blame my friend, for having slain the mad bull to save thy cousin.
Nē quis amicum meum culpet, quod ad sobrinum tuum servandum rabidum taurum necaverit.

102. There is no one here, is there, whom the master may blame for not having saved the insane mendicant?
Numquis hic est quem dominus culpet quod non mendicum insanum servaverit?

You did say "typically", not "always". Is there any way I can know when it's going to be quod + indicative, and when quod + subjunctive, other than brute force memorization? (The fundamental idea in Prendergast's text is to memorize a lot of sentences -- respond to English prompt with Latin -- so as to become habitually familiar with Latin grammar before learning grammar rules -- and yet here I find myself asking a lot of grammatical questions.)

If I were to generalize from these three examples, I'd note that all three involve the phrase "for having [done something]," which seems to call for a perfect tense, but I don't know why it's subjunctive here.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
083 Who is there here who can blame my cousin even in the least for having caused the slave to be liberated?
Quis hic est qui sobrinum meum vel paullum culpet quod servum liberandum curaverit?

093 Let not anyone blame my friend, for having slain the mad bull to save thy cousin.
Nē quis amicum meum culpet, quod ad sobrinum tuum servandum rabidum taurum necaverit.

102. There is no one here, is there, whom the master may blame for not having saved the insane mendicant?
Numquis hic est quem dominus culpet quod non mendicum insanum servaverit?
In all of those, the quod clause is dependent on a potential relative clause or negative command, and may therefore be attracted into the subjunctive for that reason. Alternatively, the quod clauses here can all be seen as indirect speech by the potential "anyones" who would blame so and so. I can't tell for sure which explanation was the author's intention. Each could by itself justify the subjunctive, and both could be true at the same time.
You did say "typically", not "always". Is there any way I can know when it's going to be quod + indicative, and when quod + subjunctive, other than brute force memorization?
Quod does not, by itself, require the subjunctive. When it does take the subjunctive, it's because there is another reason for it, because it's part of a potential, of indirect speech, and the like.

One common construction with quod and the subjunctive that you may like to be aware of is non quod + subjunctive sed quia/quod + indicative, meaning "not because (something that is not the case) but because...". E.g. Hoc facio non quod libeat sed quia necesse est = "I'm doing this not because I feel like it (I dont) but because I must". In this construction, the subjunctive in the quod clause is because it denotes something that isn't real. If the "not because" is about something that is real but just happens not to be the reason for whatever is stated in the main clause, it will take the indicative. E.g. Hoc facio non quod tu me rogasti sed quia aequum est = "I'm doing this not because you asked me to (though you did) but because it is right."
 

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
In all of those, the quod clause is dependent on a potential relative clause or negative command, and may therefore be attracted into the subjunctive for that reason. Alternatively, the quod clauses here can all be seen as indirect speech by the potential "anyones" who would blame so and so. I can't tell for sure which explanation was the author's intention. Each could by itself justify the subjunctive, and both could be true at the same time.

Quod does not, by itself, require the subjunctive. When it does take the subjunctive, it's because there is another reason for it, because it's part of a potential, of indirect speech, and the like.
This makes good sense to me. And not only in those three examples that I gave, but in every one of the Prendergast sentences with quod that I have come to so far, wherever it takes the subjunctive, the main clause has a subjunctive, but where it takes the indicative, the main clause has an indicative verb.

Thank you, Pacifica. Me ab insanitatis explanationes tuae servant.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Lol. :D You're welcome.

*ab insanitate
 

Gregorius Textor

Civis Illustris
I had a feeling there would be at least one error in that. Semper perseverabo. Altera via non est.
 
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