Latin/grammar

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

1. eaque malitia, quae vult illa quidem videri se esse prudentiam (III. 71)
What does “illa” mean?

2. Nec ulla pernicies vitae maior inveniri potest quam in malitia simulatio intellegentiae, (III. 72)
I am not sure why nom. case for both “simulatio” and “militia”?

3. Hoc qui admiratur, is se, quid sit vir bonus, nescire fateatur. (III. 75)
Is the following the correct order for translation: Is, qui se [subj. of the accu. + inf.clause] hoc admiratur, fateatur  nescire quid sit vir bonus.”?

4. Itaque ei dixisse Fimbriam se illam rem numquam iudicaturum, (III. 77)
Is “Fimbriam” and “dixisse” the accu. + inf. structure? But after which verb? What is “ei”?

Thank you,
Robert

Answer
Dear Robert,

1.In “…eaque malitia, quae vult illa quidem videri se esse prudentiam, sed…..” (Cicero, De Officiis, III. 71) the feminine demonstrative pronoun “illa”  in the nominative singular referring to the nominative “malitiă” is nothing but an intensifier used to add force to the meaning of “eaque malitia quae” and show emphasis.
So, “…eaque malitia, quae vult illa quidem videri…” literally means:”…and that (eaque) trickery (malitia) which (quae)  it itself certainly (illa quidem) wants (vult) to seem (videri)  that it (se, subject of the infinitive clause)  is (esse) wisdom (prudentiam), but (sed)….”, i.e.:”…and that trickery itself, which wants, of course, to pass for wisdom, but…”

Note that “ille/illa…..quidem…....sed” corresponds to “certainly/indeed/of course…...but”.


2. In “Nec ulla pernicies vitae maior inveniri potest quam in malitia simulatio intellegentiae,..”(III. 72) the word “simulatio”(3rd declension)  is a nominative case, while “malitia” (1st declension) is an ablative singular as “in malitiā” is a kind of ablative of Place where, whose nominative would be “malitiă” with the short a.

So, “Nec ulla pernicies vitae maior inveniri potest quam in malitia simulatio intellegentiae..” literally means:
”And no (nec ulla)  greater (maior) calamity (pernicies) of life/in life(vitae) can (potest) be found (inveniri) than (quam, introducing a comparison) simulation/pretence (simulatio. When "quam" is used in the comparison, the two things compared are put in the same case, i.e. in the nominative in this context, for the first thing is “pernicies” (nominative) and then the seconf thing “simulatio” must be in the nominative) of wisdom (intellegentiae) in  trickery (in malitia)…”

For "quam" in comparison see  AG 407.



3.In “ Hoc qui admiratur, is se, quid sit vir bonus, nescire fateatur”  (III. 75) the correct order for translation is the following: "Is, qui admiratur hoc, fateatur  se [subj. of the accu. + inf.clause] nescire (verb of the object-clause) quid sit vir bonus” literally meaning:
”The one who (qui) is astonished at (miratur) this thing/  fact (hoc) let him confess (fateatur, hortatory subjunctive) that he (se) does not know (nescire) what (quid, introducing an indirect question clause) a good (bonus) man (vir)  is (sit)”.


4.In “Itaque ei dixisse Fimbriam se illam rem numquam iudicaturum,…” (III. 77) the object-clause “dixisse  Fimbriam” depends on the antecedent sentence “C. Fimbriam consularem audiebam de patre nostro puer iudicem M. Lutatio Pinthiae fuisse…” and then the accu. + inf. Structure stands  after the verb “audiebam”. As for the dative  “ei”, it depends on “dixisse”.

In short “C.Fimbriam consularem audiebam …..puer iudicem M. Lutatio Pinthiae fuisse… Itaque ei dixisse Fimbriam se illam rem numquam iudicaturum,…” literally  means:
”When I was a boy (puer, apposition.See AG 282) , I heard (audiebam)  …..that Gaius Fimbria (C. Fimbriam), an ex-consul (consularem), was (fuisse) judge  (iudicem) to/  in a case of M. Lutatius Pinthia (M. Lutatio Pinthiae, dative depending on “iudicem”) ..….So (itaque) [I heard that, "audiebam", understood]  Fimbria (Fimbriam ) told  (dixisse) him (ei, dative  after “dixisse. This pronoun refers to Lutatius Pinthia ) that he  (se) would never judge (numquam iudicaturum [esse]) that /such a (illam) thing/ case (rem)…”

Best regards,

Maria

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