Latin/grammar

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

1. alii studiosi optimi cuiusque videantur (85)
Could you give a literal translation?

2. ita iustitiae honestatique adhaerescet, ut, dum ea conservet, quamvis graviter offendat (86)
Is “ea” f. sing.? Does it refer to “iustitiae honestatique”? What is the obj. of “offendat”?
Could you give a literal translation?

3. de qua praeclare apud eundem est Platonem (87)
Could you give a literal translation?

4. qui punitur aliquem aut verbis castigat, (88)
Is “aliquem” the obj. of “punitur” and “verbis” the abl. of manner for “castigat”?

Thank you.
Robert

Answer
Dear Robert,

1.Here’s the literal translation for “…. alii studiosi optimi cuiusque videantur ….(Cicero, De Officiis,I,85):”…others (alii ) seem (videantur, depending on “ut” in “evenit ut”) partial to /having a liking for (studiosi) the patricians (optimi cuiusque)…”.

Note that  “optimus quisque” is an idiomatic construction to express universality such as in e.g. “optimus quisque” meaning “ every good man”/ “all the good”, but also “all eminent citizens”, i.e. “the patricians” in ancient Rome.



2.Note that in “… ita iustitiae honestatique adhaerescet, ut, dum ea conservet, quamvis graviter offendat…” (I, 86):

(a)"ea” (those things) is a neuter plural  accusative which refers to “iustitiae honestatique”.

(b)there is no  obj. of “offendat” as this verb is used in its intransitive  value meaning “to suffer damage”, “to receive an injury”.

In short, “… ita iustitiae honestatique adhaerescet, ut, dum ea conservet, quamvis graviter offendat…” (I, 86) literally means:
”…he will be attached (adhaerescet) to justice (iustitiae) and honour (honestatique) so (ita) that (ut) he suffers damage (offendat, pres subj depending on “ut”),however (quamvis) heavily(graviter), provided that(dum) he preserves (conservet, pres subj depending on “dum”) those things/ them (ea)”, i.e. (still quite literally):
”he will be devoted to  justice  and honour  so  that he will suffer damage, however heavy, provided that he preserves justice and honour...”



3.Here’s the literal translation of “…Miserrima …. est ambitio honorumque contentio,  de qua praeclare apud eundem est Platonem..” (I, 87):
”…it is (est) a very worthless(miserrima)ambition (ambitio) and struggling (contentioque) for public honors(honorum), about which (de qua)in (apud) the same (eundem) Plato (Platonem) it is (est) [written] excellently(preclare)”, i.e.(still quite literally):
“it is  a very worthless ambition and struggling for public honours, concerning which Plato has written  excellently…”.

Note that “apud” in designating the author of a work or of an assertion, means:”in”, “by”, “in the writings of”.



4. In “… qui punitur aliquem aut verbis castigat,…” (I, 88)  “aliquem” is  the direct object of “punitur”(deponent verb) as well as of “castigat”, while “verbis” is  the abl. of means depending on “castigat”, so that ““… qui punitur aliquem aut verbis castigat..”literally means:
”…who (qui) punishes (punitur) and reproves (castigat) with words (verbis)”, i.e.:
”…. who administers the punishment or reproof”.

Best regards,

Maria

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