Latin/grammar

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Question
Dear Maria,
Could you please help me with the following (all from de Amicitia):
1. “concedetur profecto verum esse, ut bonos boni diligant adsciscantque sibi quasi propinquitate coniunctos atque natura.” (50)
Maria, I asked you about this sentence last time. But your explanation stopped before “coniunctos atque natura”, which actually is the phrase I don’t understand. Could you explain that phrase?

2. “ut opinor, bonis inter bonos quasi necessariam benevolentiam, qui est amicitiae fons a natura constitutus.” (50)
Is “bonis inter bonos quasi necessariam benevolentiam” accu. +infinitive [“esse” understood after benevolentiam] clause after “opinor”? Is “necessariam” an adj, which modifies “benevolentiam”?

3. “tumque illud fit, quod ab amico est profectum, iucundum, si cum studio est profectum” (51)
I have two questions: (a) it seems to me that “illud” refers to “utilitas” in the previous sentence. If so, why not “illa”? (b) it seems to me that the first “profectum” is the p.p. of “proficiscor” whereas the second “profectum” is the p.p. of “proficio”. Am I correct?

4. “Non ergo erunt homines deliciis diffluentes audiendi” (52)
Is this 2nd periphrastic conjugation? If so, does “homines” need to be dative?

Thank you.
Robert

Answer
Dear Robert,

1.In “concedetur profecto verum esse, ut bonos boni diligant adsciscantque sibi quasi propinquitate coniunctos atque natura.” (Cicero, De amicitia, 50) “quasi propinquitate coniunctos atque natura” literally means:”as (QUASI) joined /connected (CONIUNCTOS.Accusative masculine plural referring to “bonos”) by  affinity (PROPINQUITATE) and natural disposition (NATURA)”, i.e.: “.. surely (PROFECTO) it will be granted (CONCEDETUR) that it is (ESSE) true(VERUM)  that (UT) good men (BONI) love (DILIGANT) good men (BONOS) and join (ADSCISCANTQUE) [them] to themselves (SIBI) as (QUASI) joined /connected (CONIUNCTOS.Past participle used as an attributive participle in the accusative masculine plural referring to “bonos”) by  relationship (PROPINQUITATE) and natural disposition (NATURA)”.
In short, Laelius says that it is true that good men love good men and join to themselves  other good men as connected to themselves by relationship and nature.



2. In  “...quam ob rem hoc quidem,Fanni et Scaevola, constet,ut opinor, bonis inter bonos quasi necessariam benevolentiam, qui est amicitiae fons a natura constitutus.” (50) the sentence  “bonis inter bonos quasi necessariam benevolentiam” is just an accusative + the infinitive “esse” understood after “benevolentiam” clause, depending on the hortatory subjunctive “constet”, not on  “opinor”, as you say,  and   “necessariam” is an adjective  which modifies “benevolentiam”.
So, the passage literally means:
”Therefore (QUAM OB REM), Fannius and Scaevola, let this be certain (HOC QUIDEM... CONSTET.Hortatory subjunctive), as (UT parenthetic) I think(OPINOR),that  to the good men (BONIS.Dative of possession) among (INTER) good men (BONOS) belongs (ESSE which is implied)  an almost (QUASI) necessary (NECESSARIAM) feeling (BENEVOLENTIAM) which (QUI. Note that the relative agrees with the following  masculine word “fons”) is the fountain (FONS) of friendship (AMICITIAE) made (CONSTITUTUS agreeing with FONS) by nature(A NATURA)”, i.e.:
“Therefore, Fannius and Scaevola, let it be certain, as I think, that the good have for the good a kind of necessary feeling which is the origin of friendship that has just been made by nature “.

Note that :a)"ut opinor" is a parenthetic clause where "ut" introduces a general statement; b)the relative "qui" in "qui est amicitiae fons" agrees with the following  masculine word “fons” instead of with "benevolentiam" because of a kind of "concordatio ad sensum".



3. In “....tumque illud fit, quod ab amico est profectum, iucundum, si cum studio est profectum” (51) the  pronoun “illud” refers to “utilitas” in the previous sentence, but this connection has to do with the sense, not with the grammar, since “illud” is followed by “quod” and then “illud ...quod ...est profectum..” means:” what started/ originated/derived ..”.

So, “....tumque illud fit, quod ab amico est profectum, iucundum, si cum studio est profectum” literally means:
” ...and then (TUMQUE)  what (ILLUD...QUOD) started/originated (EST PROFECTUM,perfect tense of PROFICISCOR) from a friend (AB AMICO) becomes (FIT) agreeable (IUCUNDUM), if (SI) it originated (EST PROFECTUM. Perfect tense of  PROFICISCOR) with affection (CUM STUDIO.Ablative of manner)”, i.e.:
“and then what comes from a friend is agreeable only if it comes with affection”.

As you can see, there is “illud” instead of the feminine “illa” agreeing with "utilitas” because “illud” goes with “quod”; also, both the first “est profectum”  and the second “est profectum” are  the perfect tense of the deponent intransitive verb “proficiscor”, not of the active verb "proficio" .


4.In  “Non ergo erunt homines deliciis diffluentes audiendi” (52) the passive periphrastic “erunt... audiendi” has a  subject  which is  “homines”, while it  lacks the  person on whom the necessity rests  and then has no Dative of Agent.
In short,  “Non ergo erunt homines deliciis diffluentes audiendi” literally means:
” So, men (HOMINES) who abandon themselves (DIFFLUENTES, present participle)  to  voluptuousnesses (DELICIIS) will have not (NON ERUNT) to be listened  (AUDIENDI) “, i.e.:
”So, it will be our duty not to listen to those men who are so completely committed to  voluptuousness..”

Hope all is clear enough.

Best regards,

Maria

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Maria

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