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Dear Maria,
Could you please help me with the following (all from De Ira):

1. rapiat illum oportet et ad imum agat pondus suum et uitiorum natura procliuis. (De Ira, book I, chapter 7, section 4)
Why “rapiat” and “agat” and not their infinitives after “oportet”?

2. in quantum putauit opus esse concitatur remittiturque, non aliter quam quae tormentis exprimuntur tela in potestate mittentis sunt in quantum torqueantur. (De Ira, book I, chapter 9, section 1)
Could you give a literal translation?

3. in tyrannide illi uiuendum est in alicuius adfectus uenienti seruitutem. (De Ira, book I, chapter 10, section 2)
Could you give a literal translation?

4. atqui et venientis excipit et fugientis persequitur (De Ira, book I, chapter 11, section 2)
Why gen. “venientis” and “fugientis”?

Thank you.
Robert

Answer
Dear Robert,

1.In “….rapiat illum oportet et ad imum agat pondus suum et uitiorum natura procliuis”(Seneca, De Ira, book I, chapter 7, section 4) the present subjunctives “rapiat” and “agat” depend  on the impersonal verb “oportet “ which can be followed by a subject-clause in the infinitive, but also by  the subjunctive with or without the conjunction “ut”.

Therefore “….rapiat illum oportet et ad imum agat pondus suum et uitiorum natura procliuis” literally means:”.. it is inevitable/necessary (oportet) that  its very weight (pondus suum, referring to the “animus”, mind) and the downward (et…proclivis)  tendency (natura) of vices (vitiorum) drag (rapiat) it (illum, i.e. “animus”, the mind) and drive it (et…agat) to the bottom (ad imum)”.


2. Here’s the literal translation for “…in quantum putauit opus esse concitatur remittiturque, non aliter quam quae tormentis exprimuntur tela in potestate mittentis sunt in quantum torqueantur” (De Ira, book I, chapter 9, section 1) : “[the mind/animus]…. is aroused (concitatur) and is relaxed (remittiturque) as much as (in quantum) it  estimated (putavit) that it was necessary (opus esse) not otherwise/ just as (non aliter quam) darts/ arrows (tela) which (quae) are hurled (exprimuntur) by engines of war  (tormentis) are  (sunt) under control (in potestate) of the one who is hurling (mittentis) [them] so much as (in quantum) they (i.e. arrows) are thrown (torqueantur)”.



3. “…..in tyrannide illi uiuendum est in alicuius adfectus uenienti seruitutem” (De Ira, book I, chapter 10, section 2) literally means:”….to the one who falls (venienti, present participle, dative of the Agent in the  second periphrastic) into slavery (in servitutem) of some (alicuius) passion (adfectus, genitive singular, 4th declension), to this man (illi, dative of the Agent in the  second periphrastic) it is to live (vivendum est, impersonal form, 2nd periphrastic) under the tyranny (in tyrannide)”, i.e. : “the one who is slave of passions must live under a kind of  tyranny”.


4. In “An tu putas venatorem irasci feris ? Atqui et venientis excipit et fugientis persequitur” (De Ira, book I, chapter 11, section 2)   the present participles  “venientis” and “fugientis” are not  in the genitive singular, but in  the accusative masculine plural as the archaich ending “-is” stands for “-es”, so that  both “venientis” and “fugientis” stand for “venientes” and “fugientes”.

Therefore “An tu putas venatorem irasci feris ?Atqui et venientis excipit et fugientis persequitur et omnia illa sine ira facit ratio” literally means:” Do you think  (An putas)  that the hunter (venatorem)  is angry (irasci) toward wild beasts (feris, dative depending on the infinitive “irasci”, deponent verb)? But/and yet (atqui) he (i.e.the hunter) intercepts (excipit) those [beasts] that come (venientis/venientes) and follows (et…persequitur)  those [beasts] that flee (fugientis/fugientes), and reason(ratio)  does (facit) all these things (omnia illa) without anger (sine ira”, just to say that  there is no need of anger because the same end may be accomplished by reason.

Best regards,

Maria

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