Latin/grammar

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Question
Dear Maria,
Could you help me with the following (all from de Officiis)

1. Ita benignitate benignitas tollitur, qua quo in plures usus sis, eo minus in multos uti possis.(II. 52)
Could you give a literal translation of the part starting from “qua…”?

2. Etenim quis potest modus esse, cum et idem, qui consueverunt et idem illud alii desiderent.(II. 55)
What does “illud” mean in this sentence?

3. est enim multus in laudanda magnificentia et apparitione popularium munerum (II. 56)
Could you give a literal translation of this sentence?

4. Quare et si postulatur a populo, bonis viris si non desiderantibus, ad tamen approbantibus faciundum est (II. 58)
In the 2nd part, the paraphrastic structure, do “non desiderantibus” and “approbantibus” both modify and match  “bonis viris” (dative of agent) and imply responsibility of doing it (“faciundum est”)? Where is the accu. that usually follows “ad”?

Thank you,
Robert

Answer
Dear Robert,

1.Here’s the literal translation for “Ita benignitate benignitas tollitur, qua quo in plures usus sis, eo minus in multos uti possis”(Cicero, De Officiis, II. 52):
”This way (ita) liberality/bounty (benignitas) is removed (tollitur) by liberality (benignitate,abl.of agent/ instrument), of which (quā, abl. feminine agreeing with  “benignitate”. This abl. depends on the verb “usus sit” as “utor” takes the abl.) so much (quo, abl. of measure/degree, followed by the correlative “eo”) you made use (usus sis) towards (in) more people (plures, comparative), so much (eo, abl. of measure/degree, correlative of “quo”) you can (possis) use (uti) [it, i.e. liberality] towards many persons (in multos)”, i.e.:
”Liberality destroys liberality, because the more people you had helped, the fewer you can help in the future” in the sense that too much liberality  reduces wealth and then, if one uses his wealth to help too many persons, he will not be able to help others.


2. In “Etenim quis potest modus esse, cum et idem, qui consueverunt et idem illud alii desiderent”(II. 55) the neuter pronoun “illud”, which strengthens “idem”, means “that”, i.e. “that same thing”(idem illud) as “…cum et idem, qui consueverunt et idem illud alii desiderent” literally  means:
”….when (cum) both (et) those who (qui)  have been accustomed (consueverunt) [to bounty] wish (desiderent) the same thing (idem) and (et)  others (alii) wish (desiderent) that same thing (illud idem)“, i.e.:" ...when  both those who have been accustomed to receive benefits and others who have not received benefits wish for the same liberality".

Note that the verb “desiderent” refers to “qui consueverunt” as well as to “alii”.


3. Here’s the literal translation for “est enim multus in laudanda magnificentia et apparatione popularium munerum…” (II. 56):”for (enim) he (i.e. Theophrastus) is (est) excessive/immoderate(multus) in praising magnificence and preparation (in laudanda magnificentia et apparatione, gerundive) of the popular games (popularium munerum).”



4. Actually in “Quare et si postulatur a populo, bonis viris si non desiderantibus, ad tamen approbantibus faciundum est” (II. 58) there is not the preposition “ad”, but the conjunction  AT meaning “but” with an idea of opposition.
As for  the 2nd part, both  “non desiderantibus” and “approbantibus” modify and match  “bonis viris” (dative of agent) and imply necessity of doing it (“faciundum est”) .

In short, “Quare et si postulatur a populo, bonis viris si non desiderantibus, AT tamen approbantibus faciundum est” literally means:
”And if (et si), therefore (quare), [ such a thing/ entertainment] is demanded (postulatur) by the people (a populo), it must be done (faciundum est) by good men (bonis viris) who maybe do not like it (si non desiderantibus, attributive participle), but (at) however (tamen) consent (approbantibus, attributive participle) [it]”, i.e.:
” If, therefore, such entertainment is demanded by the people, good men have to consent to do it, though they do not like it, but however approve it”, since  entertainment/popular games were part of Roman way of life.

Best regards,

Maria

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