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Question
Hello Maria, i would like some help clarifying a translation.
"Never Forget" (as a command, referring to an experience or life event) i resorted to several priests of the catholic church for help but i've gotten different answers like
"Nunquam obliviscar"
"Numquam oblivisci"
"Nunquam oblitus"

are any or all of these correct?
if so, what is the difference?
in advance, thank you for your time.

Answer
Hello,

First of all I have to point out that in classic Latin prose  Negative Command is regularly expressed by “ne” (not)  or “numquam” (never) with the Perfect Subjunctive, when the command is in the 2nd. person singular and plural.
Otherwise we must use “ Ne / Numquam” + the present subjunctive.

That being stated,  “Never forget”,  used as a command addressed to a  2nd. Person,  translates correctly as follows:

-“Numquam oblitus sis”, if this command is addressed to only one male person.

-“Numquam obliti sitis”, if this command is addressed to many male persons.

-“Numquam oblita sis”, if this command is addressed to only one female person.

-“Numquam oblitae sitis”, if this command is addressed to many female persons.

As you can see, Latin - which is an inflected Language - changes the ending of the verb (oblitus sis, obliti sitis, oblita sis, oblitae sitis), according to the person the command is addressed to, differently from English where “Never forget” remains the same independently of the person the command is addressed to.


As for "Numquam obliviscar", "Numquam oblivisci" and "Numquam oblitus", they all are wrong as they all do not correspond to the negative imperative “Never forget”, since (1)“Numquam obliviscar” would mean “I will never forget”,for “obliviscar” is the 1st person singular of the future as well as of the present subjunctive of the deponent verb “obliviscor” (I forget); (2)“Numquam oblivisci” is not a command, but a present  infinitive mood of “obliviscor”; (3)"Numquam oblitus"  would mean “Never forgotten” as “oblitus” is the past participle of “obliviscor”.

Read more below.

Hope this is clear enough.

Best regards,

Maria
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Note that:

-NUMQUAM or NUNQUAM = never

-OBLITUS SIS ( perfect subjunctive, 2nd person singular, masculine gender, singular number)= forget

-OBLITUS SITIS ( perfect subjunctive, 2nd person plural, masculine gender, plural number)= forget

-OBLITA SIS ( perfect subjunctive, 2nd person singular, feminine gender, singular number)= forget

-OBLITAE SITIS ( perfect subjunctive, 2nd person singular, feminine gender, singular number)= forget

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Maria

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I am an expert in Latin Language and Literature and I'll be glad to answer any questions concerning this matter.

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Over 25 years teaching experience.

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I received my Ph.D. in Classics (summa cum laude) from Genova University (Italy).

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