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Latin Online

Lesson 8

Winfred P. Lehmann and Jonathan Slocum

St. Augustine -- Aurelius Augustinus -- was born in North Africa at Tagaste in Numidia on November 13, 354 A.D. He was trained to be a rhetorician. While his mother was a Christian, he did not adopt Christianity until 387. In 395 he became Bishop of Hippo, and lived there until his death. With Ambrose, Jerome, and Gregory the Great he is considered one of the four great Fathers of the Church. Among his other notable works are De Doctrina Christiana and the City of God.

Reading and Textual Analysis

This section is a part of Book I, Section 8 of the Confessions. In Book I, St. Augustine describes his childhood. This section is remarkable for its account of his learning to talk. Few authors reach back into their infancy as St. Augustine does. Somewhat earlier in Book I, he notes that as an infant he was unable to communicate effectively. He would toss about his limbs and utter sounds that corresponded to his wishes, but others were unable to understand him. The selection may also illustrate how he depicted his personal feelings throughout his autobiography, an ability for which he has been greatly admired. The language is comparable with that of the great period of Classical Latin, though written four centuries later. This selection provides an example of conversational Latin, in contrast with the language of the previous texts.

Non enim eram infans, qui non farer, sed iam puer loquens eram.

  • non -- adverb; <non> not -- not
  • enim -- conjunction; <enim> for, indeed -- for
  • eram -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <sum, esse, fuī> I am -- was
  • infans -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <infans, infantis> infant -- an infant
  • qui -- relative pronoun; nominative singular masculine of <qui, quae, quod> who, which, what, that -- that
  • non -- adverb; <non> not -- not
  • farer -- deponent verb; 1st person singular imperfect subjunctive of <for, fārī, fātus sum> talk -- could talk
  • sed -- conjunction; <sed> but -- but
  • iam -- adverb; <iam> already -- already
  • puer -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <puer, pueri> boy -- boy
  • loquens -- deponent verb; nominative singular masculine of present participle of <loquor, loquī, locutus sum> speak -- speaking
  • eram -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <sum, esse, fuī> I am -- I was

Et memini hoc, et unde loqui didiceram, post adverti.

  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • memini -- defective verb; 1st person singular perfect of <memini> remember -- I remember
  • hoc -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative singular neuter of <hic, haec, hoc> there, this -- this
  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • unde -- adverb; <unde> from whence -- how
  • loqui -- deponent verb; infinitive of <loquor, loquī, locutus sum> speak -- to speak
  • didiceram -- verb; 1st person singular pluperfect of <discō, discere, didicī, -> learn -- I learned
  • post -- adverb; <post> after -- afterwards
  • adverti -- verb; 1st person singular perfect of <advertō, advertere, advertī, adversum> turn to, note -- I noted

Non enim docebant me maiores homines, praebentes mihi verba certo aliquo ordine doctrinae sicut paulo post litteras.

  • non -- adverb; <non> not -- not
  • enim -- conjunction; <enim> for, indeed -- for
  • docebant -- verb; 3rd person plural imperfect of <doceō, docēre, docuī, doctum> teach -- did...teach
  • me -- pronoun; accusative singular of <ego> I -- me
  • maiores -- adjective; nominative plural masculine of comparative of <magnus, magna, magnum> great, large -- older
  • homines -- noun, masculine; nominative plural of <homo, hominis> man, human -- people
  • praebentes -- verb; nominative plural masculine present participle of <praebeō, praebēre, praebuī, praebitus> offer, provide -- by providing
  • mihi -- pronoun; dative singular of <ego> I -- me
  • verba -- noun, neuter; accusative plural of <verbum, verbi> word -- words
  • certo -- adjective; ablative singular masculine of <certus, certa, certum> certain -- in a certain
  • aliquo -- pronoun adjective; ablative singular masculine of <aliqui, aliqua, aliquod> some, any -- given
  • ordine -- noun, masculine; ablative singular of <ordo, ordinis> order -- order
  • doctrinae -- noun, feminine; genitive singular of <doctrina, doctrinae> teaching -- of teaching
  • sicut -- adverb; <sicut> as, like -- as
  • paulo -- adverb; <paulo> little -- a little
  • post -- adverb; <post> after -- later
  • litteras -- noun, feminine; accusative plural of <littera, litterae> letter -- (they did) the letters

Sed ego ipse mente, quem dedisti mihi, deus meus, cum gemitibus et vocibus variis et variis membrorum motibus edere vellem sensa cordis mei, ut voluntati pareretur.

  • sed -- conjunction; <sed> but -- but
  • ego -- pronoun; nominative singular of <ego> I -- I
  • ipse -- intensive pronoun; nominative singular masculine of <ipse, ipsa, ipsum> self -- myself
  • mente -- noun, feminine; ablative singular of <mens, mentis> mind -- with the mind
  • quem -- relative pronoun; accusative singular masculine of <qui, quae, quod> who, which, what, that -- that
  • dedisti -- verb; 2nd person singular perfect of <dō, dare, dedī, dātum> give -- thou hast given
  • mihi -- pronoun; dative singular of <ego> I -- me
  • deus -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <deus, dei> god -- God
  • meus -- pronoun; nominative singular masculine of <meus, mea, meum> my -- my
  • cum -- conjunction; <cum> since, when -- with
  • gemitibus -- noun, masculine; ablative plural of <gemitus, gemitus> sign, groan -- groans
  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • vocibus -- noun, feminine; ablative plural of <vox, vocis> voice -- voices
  • variis -- adjective; ablative plural feminine of <varius, varia, varium> various -- various
  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • variis -- adjective; ablative plural masculine of <varius, varia, varium> various -- with various
  • membrorum -- noun, neuter; genitive plural of <membrum, membri> member -- of my members
  • motibus -- noun, masculine; ablative plural of <motus, motus> movement -- movements
  • edere -- verb; infinitive of <ēdō, ēdere, ēdidī, ēditum> give out -- to express
  • vellem -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect subjunctive of <volō, velle, voluī> wish, determine -- I might wish
  • sensa -- noun, neuter; accusative plural of <sensa, sensorum> ideas -- the ideas
  • cordis -- noun, neuter; genitive singular of <cor, cordis> heart -- heart
  • mei -- pronoun; genitive singular neuter of <meus, mea, meum> my -- of my
  • ut -- conjunction; <ut> that, so that -- that
  • voluntati -- noun, feminine; dative singular of <voluntas, voluntatis> will, desire -- my desire
  • pareretur -- verb; 3rd person singular subjunctive imperfect passive of <pāreō, parēre, pāruī, -> comply -- were in accordance with

Nec valerem quae volebam omnia nec quibus volebam omnibus.

  • nec -- adverb; <nec> neither ... nor -- neither
  • valerem -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect subjunctive of <valeō, valēre, valuī, -> be able -- I was not able (to express)
  • quae -- relative pronoun; accusative plural neuter of <qui, quae, quod> who, which, what, that -- that
  • volebam -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <volō, velle, voluī> wish, determine -- I wanted
  • omnia -- adjective; accusative plural neuter of <omnis, omnis, omne> all -- all the things
  • nec -- adverb; <nec> neither ... nor -- nor
  • quibus -- relative pronoun; ablative plural neuter of <qui, quae, quod> who, which, what, that -- with (the expressions)
  • volebam -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <volō, velle, voluī> wish, determine -- I wished
  • omnibus -- adjective; ablative plural neuter of <omnis, omnis, omne> all -- all

Pensabam memoria.

  • pensabam -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <pēnsō, pēnsāre, pēnsāvī, pēnsātus> weigh, ponder -- I pondered
  • memoria -- noun, feminine; ablative singular of <memoria, memoriae> memory, remembrance -- in remembrance

Cum ipsi appellabant rem aliquam et cum secundum eam vocem corpus ad aliquid movebant, videbam et tenebam hoc ab eis vocari rem illam, quod sonabant, cum eam vellent ostendere.

  • cum -- conjunction; <cum> since, when -- when
  • ipsi -- intensive pronoun; nominative plural masculine of <ipse, ipsa, ipsum> self -- they
  • appellabant -- verb; 3rd person plural imperfect of <appellō, appellāre, appellāvī, appellātum> call -- designated
  • rem -- noun, feminine; accusative singular of <res, rei> thing, matter -- thing
  • aliquam -- pronoun adjective; accusative singular feminine of <aliqui, aliqua, aliquod> some, any -- any
  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • cum -- conjunction; <cum> since, when -- when
  • secundum -- preposition; <secundum> following -- after
  • eam -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative singular feminine of <is, ea, id> him, her, this -- that
  • vocem -- noun, feminine; accusative singular of <vox, vocis> voice -- sound
  • corpus -- noun, neuter; accusative singular of <corpus, corporis> body -- (their) body
  • ad -- preposition; <ad> to, towards -- to
  • aliquid -- indefinite pronoun; accusative singular neuter of <aliquis, aliquis, aliquid> anyone -- something
  • movebant -- verb; 3rd person plural imperfect of <moveō, movēre, mōvi, mōtus> move -- they moved
  • videbam -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <videō, vidēre, vīdī, vīsum> see -- I observed
  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • tenebam -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <teneō, tenēre, tenuī, -> hold, control, understand -- I understood
  • hoc -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative singular neuter of <hic, haec, hoc> there, this -- this
  • ab -- preposition; <ab> from, after -- by
  • eis -- demonstrative pronoun; ablative plural masculine of <is, ea, id> him, her, this -- them
  • vocari -- verb; passive infinitive of <vocō, vocāre, vocāvī, vocātum> call -- named
  • rem -- noun, feminine; accusative singular of <res, rei> thing, matter -- thing
  • illam -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative singular feminine of <ille, illa, illud> he, she, that -- that
  • quod -- conjunction; <quod> that, because -- in that
  • sonabant -- verb; 3rd person plural imperfect of <sonō, sonāre, sonuī, sonitus> pronounce -- they pronounced (it)
  • cum -- conjunction; <cum> since, when -- when
  • eam -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative singular feminine of <is, ea, id> him, her, this -- it
  • vellent -- verb; 3rd person plural imperfect subjunctive of <volō, velle, voluī> wish, determine -- they wanted
  • ostendere -- verb; infinitive of <ostendō, ostendere, ostendī, ostentum> show, point out -- to point out

Hoc autem eos velle, ex motu corporis aperiebatur, tamquam verbis naturalibus omnium gentium.

  • hoc -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative singular neuter of <hic, haec, hoc> there, this -- this
  • autem -- conjunction; <autem> but -- but
  • eos -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative plural masculine of <is, ea, id> him, her, this -- they
  • velle -- verb; infinitive of <volō, velle, voluī> wish, determine -- (they) wished (to indicate)
  • ex -- preposition; <ex> out of, from -- from
  • motu -- noun, masculine; ablative singular of <motus, motus> movement -- the movement
  • corporis -- noun, neuter; genitive singular of <corpus, corporis> body -- of their body
  • aperiebatur -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect passive of <aperiō, aperīre, aperuī, apertum> open -- it was disclosed
  • tamquam -- adverb; <tamquam> just as, as if -- as if it were
  • verbis -- noun, neuter; ablative plural of <verbum, verbi> word -- by the ... words
  • naturalibus -- adjective; ablative plural neuter of <naturalis, naturalis, naturale> natural -- natural
  • omnium -- adjective; genitive plural feminine of <omnis, omnis, omne> all -- of all
  • gentium -- noun, feminine; genitive plural of <gens, gentis> race, clan -- peoples

Quae fiunt vultu et nutu oculorum ceterorumque membrorum actu et sonitu vocis indicante affectionem animi in petendis, habendis, reiciendis fugiendisve rebus.

  • quae -- relative pronoun; nominative plural neuter of <qui, quae, quod> who, which, what, that -- which
  • fiunt -- defective verb; 3rd person plural present of <fio, fierī> be made -- are made
  • vultu -- noun, masculine; ablative singular of <vultus, vultus> expression, face -- by facial expression
  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • nutu -- noun, masculine; ablative singular of <nutus, nutus> nod, expression -- by the cast
  • oculorum -- noun, masculine; genitive plural of <oculus, oculi> eye -- of the eyes
  • ceterorumque -- adjective; genitive plural neuter of <ceteri, ceterae, cetera> other + conjunction <-que> and -- and of other
  • membrorum -- noun, neuter; genitive plural of <membrum, membri> member -- members
  • actu -- noun, masculine; ablative singular of <actus, actus> gesture, expression -- by the action
  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • sonitu -- noun, masculine; ablative singular of <sonitus, sonitus> sound -- by the sound
  • vocis -- noun, feminine; genitive singular of <vox, vocis> voice -- of the voice
  • indicante -- verb; ablative singular masculine of present participle of <indicō, indicāre, indicāvī, indicātum> indicate -- indicating
  • affectionem -- noun, feminine; accusative singular of <affectio, affectionis> affection -- the feelings
  • animi -- noun, masculine; genitive singular of <animus, animi> soul, mind -- of the mind
  • in -- preposition; <in> in, on -- in
  • petendis -- verbal adjective; ablative plural feminine of <petō, petere, petīvī, petītum> seek -- seeking
  • habendis -- verb; ablative plural feminine of present participle of <habeō, habēre, habuī, habitum> have -- possessing
  • reiciendis -- verb; ablative plural feminine of present participle of <rēiciō, rēicere, rējēcī, rējectum> push back, reject -- rejecting
  • fugiendisve -- verb; ablative plural feminine of present participle of <fugiō, fūgī> flee, avoid + conjunction <-ve> or -- avoiding
  • rebus -- noun, feminine; ablative plural of <res, rei> thing, matter -- things

Ita verba in variis sententiis locis suis posita et crebro audita quarum rerum signa essent paulatim colligebam.

  • ita -- adverb; <ita> thus -- in this way
  • verba -- noun, neuter; accusative plural of <verbum, verbi> word -- words
  • in -- preposition; <in> in, on -- in
  • variis -- adjective; ablative plural feminine of <varius, varia, varium> various -- various
  • sententiis -- noun, feminine; dative plural of <sententia, sententiae> sentence -- sentences
  • locis -- noun, masculine; dative plural of <locus, loci> place -- places
  • suis -- possessive pronoun; dative plural masculine of <suus, sua, suum> own -- in their proper
  • posita -- verb; accusative plural neuter of perfect participle passive of <pōnō, ponere, posuī, positum> place, situate -- put
  • et -- conjunction; <et> and -- and
  • crebro -- adverb; <crebro> frequently, often -- often
  • audita -- verb; accusative plural neuter of perfect participle passive of <audiō, audīre, audīvī, audītum> hear -- heard
  • quarum -- relative pronoun; genitive plural feminine of <qui, quae, quod> who, which, what, that -- of which
  • rerum -- noun, feminine; genitive plural of <res, rei> thing, matter -- things
  • signa -- noun, neuter; nominative plural of <signum, signi> sign -- signs
  • essent -- verb; 3rd person plural imperfect subjunctive of <sum, esse, fuī> I am -- they were
  • paulatim -- adverb; <paulatim> gradually -- gradually
  • colligebam -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <colligō, collēgī, colligere, collēctum> collect -- I collected

Edomito in eis signis ore, per haec enuntiabam.

  • edomito -- verb; ablative singular neuter of perfect participle passive of <ēdomō, edomāre, edomuī, ēdomitum> conquer, subdue -- conquered
  • in -- preposition; <in> in, on -- to
  • eis -- demonstrative pronoun; dative plural neuter of <is, ea, id> him, her, this -- those
  • signis -- noun, neuter; dative plural of <signum, signi> sign -- signs
  • ore -- noun, neuter; ablative singular of <os, oris> mouth -- mouth
  • per -- preposition; <per> through, by -- by means of
  • haec -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative plural neuter of <hic, haec, hoc> there, this -- them
  • enuntiabam -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <ēnūntiō, ēnūtiāre, ēnuntiāvī, ēnuntiātum> speak, express -- I expressed myself

Sic cum his, inter quos eram, voluntatum enuntiandarum signa communicavi.

  • sic -- adverb; <sic> so, thus -- So
  • cum -- preposition; <cum> with -- with
  • his -- demonstrative pronoun; ablative plural masculine of <hic, haec, hoc> there, this -- those
  • inter -- preposition; <inter> between, among -- among
  • quos -- relative pronoun; accusative plural masculine of <qui, quae, quod> who, which, what, that -- whom
  • eram -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <sum, esse, fuī> I am -- I was
  • voluntatum -- noun, feminine; genitive plural of <voluntas, voluntatis> will, desire -- of the desires
  • enuntiandarum -- verbal adjective; genitive plural feminine of <ēnūntiō, ēnūtiāre, ēnuntiāvī, ēnuntiātum> speak, express -- to be expressed (by me)
  • signa -- noun, neuter; accusative plural of <signum, signi> sign -- signs
  • communicavi -- verb; 1st person singular perfect of <commūnicō, commūnicāre, commūnicāvī, commūnicātum> communicate -- I communicated

Lesson Text

Non enim eram infans, qui non farer, sed iam puer loquens eram. Et memini hoc, et unde loqui didiceram, post adverti. Non enim docebant me maiores homines, praebentes mihi verba certo aliquo ordine doctrinae sicut paulo post litteras. Sed ego ipse mente, quem dedisti mihi, deus meus, cum gemitibus et vocibus variis et variis membrorum motibus edere vellem sensa cordis mei, ut voluntati pareretur. Nec valerem quae volebam omnia nec quibus volebam omnibus. Pensabam memoria. Cum ipsi appellabant rem aliquam et cum secundum eam vocem corpus ad aliquid movebant, videbam et tenebam hoc ab eis vocari rem illam, quod sonabant, cum eam vellent ostendere. Hoc autem eos velle, ex motu corporis aperiebatur, tamquam verbis naturalibus omnium gentium. Quae fiunt vultu et nutu oculorum ceterorumque membrorum actu et sonitu vocis indicante affectionem animi in petendis, habendis, reiciendis fugiendisve rebus. Ita verba in variis sententiis locis suis posita et crebro audita quarum rerum signa essent paulatim colligebam. Edomito in eis signis ore, per haec enuntiabam. Sic cum his, inter quos eram, voluntatum enuntiandarum signa communicavi.

Translation

For I was no longer an infant that could not speak, but was already a speaking boy. And I remember this well and later noted how I first learned to speak. The older people did not teach me by providing words to me in a certain given order of instruction, as they did the letters later. But by the mind that Thou, my God, gave me, I on my own with grunts, varieties of voices and various motions of my body tried to express the ideas of my heart, that were in accordance with my desires. But I neither could express everything I wanted to, nor with all the expressions I wanted. Then I pondered when remembering. When they designated a thing, and when after that they moved their body toward something, I observed it and understood that this was the thing named by them in that they pronounced it when they wanted to point it out. And that they meant this or that thing was discovered by me through the motion of their body, as by the natural words (language) of all peoples. These are made by facial expression and by the cast of the eyes, by the acts of other members, and by the sound of the voice indicating the feelings of the mind, whether in desiring, enjoying, rejecting or avoiding anything. And in this way I gradually collected the words in various sentences that were put in their proper places and often heard for the things of which they were the signs. And when my mouth was conquered for these signs, I expressed my wishes by means of them. In this way, I communicated with those with whom I was, the signs of the desires I wished to express.

Grammar

36. The Declension of Substantives.

In earlier lessons, beginning with Grammar Selection 3, we have given examples of the declension of nouns. As we noted in the grammar selections on verbs, recognition of inflected forms is especially important for understanding Latin, since it includes few particles and much of the information for interpreting sentences is found in inflections. By way of summary, as well as information on the inflection of adjectives, an overall picture of substantival inflection will be given here. Since adjectives are inflected in general like nouns, though most of them in two or three genders, they may serve to provide examples of the inflection of substantives in general.

37. Substantives with Inflections of the First and Second Declensions.

A large number of adjectives are listed in dictionaries with endings in -us, e.g. magnus 'large'. These have their inflected forms in the masculine and neuter genders according to the second declension, in the feminine gender according to the first. The paradigm of magnus provides an example.

    Singular   Plural
    Masc   Fem   Neut   Masc   Fem   Neut
Nom   magnus   magna   magnum   magnī   magnae   magna
Gen   magnī   magnae   magnī   magnōrum   magnārum   magnōrum
Dat   magnō   magnae   magnō   magnīs   magnīs   magnīs
Acc   magnum   magnam   magnum   magnōs   magnās   magna
Abl   magnō   magnā   magnō   magnīs   magnīs   magnīs

Most second declension nouns with stems ending in -ro- reduce the ending to -r, rather than -rus. Among them are common nouns like puer 'boy' and vir 'man'. Apart from these forms in the nominative, they have the regular inflections, e.g. genitives puerī and virī, etc. In the same way, parallel adjectives are listed in dictionaries with endings in -er, e.g. dexter 'right', genitive dexterī; ruber 'red', by contrast, has the genitive rubrī.

Pronominal adjectives ending in -us have their genitive and dative singulars inflected like pronouns, that is with -īus and -ī in the three genitives singular, e.g. solus 'alone', gen.sg. solīus, gen.sg. solī. Other examples are: totus 'whole', alīus 'other', nullus 'none', totus 'whole', unus 'one'. Similarly, those ending in -er, such as uter 'which of two', gen. utrīus, dat. utrī, as well as alter 'the other' and neuter 'neither'.

38. Substantives with Inflections of the Third Declension.

Like nouns of the third declension, adjectives in this declension have stems ending in consonants rather than in -a and -u- < -o-. Accordingly the nominative may differ in form of stem from the other cases, e.g. acer 'sharp' but oblique cases with stem acr-; some adjectives are regular, on the other hand, e.g. celer 'swift', celer-. The stems may be determined from dictionary entries.

Moreover, many adjectives of the third declension are inflected in only two genders, e.g. masc. gravis, nt. grave 'heavy'. The comparatives have bases ending in -r, which is replaced by -s in the neuter nom. and acc., e.g. melior, nt. melius, gen. melioris 'better'.

Some adjectives of the declension are inflected only in one gender; among these the present particles, such as donans, gen. donantis 'giving'. After their stem has been determined, the inflections of these two groups are like those of the adjectives inflected in the three genders.

    Singular   Plural
    Masc   Fem   Neut   Masc   Fem   Neut
Nom   acer   acris   acre   acrēs   acrēs   acria
Gen   acris   acris   acris   acrium   acrium   acrium
Dat   acrī   acrī   acrī   acribus   acribus   acribus
Acc   acrem   acrem   acre   acrīs   acrīs   acria
Abl   acrī   acrī   acrī   acribus   acribus   acribus

By way of summary, and review of examples in previous grammar sections, examples are given here of third declension nouns in the nominative and genitive singular with stems ending in various consonants.

  • Stems ending in obstruents:
    masc. princeps, principis 'chief'; miles, militis 'soldier'; pēs, pedis 'foot'; rex, regis 'king; neut. caput, capitis 'head'; cor, cordis 'heart'.
  • Stems ending in resonants:
    masc. pater, patris 'father'; victor, victoris 'victor'; consul, consulis 'consul; neut. ebur, eboris 'ivory'; tuber, tuberis 'swelling'.
  • Stems ending in nasals:
    masc. sermo, sermonis 'speech'; fem. virgo, virginis 'virgin'; neut. nomen, nominis 'name'.
  • Stems ending in -s, most of which are neuters:
    genus, generis 'race'; corpus, corporis 'body'; masc. flōs, flōris 'flower'; fem. tellus, telluris 'earth'.
  • Stems ending in -i, most of which are masculine or feminine:
    The nominative ends in -is, like the genitive, e.g. finis 'end, gen. finis; and the genitive plural ends in -ium, e.g. finium. Neuters may have no ending, e.g. animal 'animal, animalis, gen.pl. animalium. Similarly, adjectives of the third declension have their genitive plural ending in -ium, as in the paradigm of acer above.

The third declension also includes irregular nouns. Among these are vīs 'force, acc.sg. vim, nom.pl. vīres; bōs 'cow' gen.sg. bovis, nom.pl. boves; Iuppiter 'Jupiter', gen.sg. Iovis.

The inflection of nouns in the fourth and fifth declensions has been given in Grammar Selection 13. These declensions have no adjectives.

The chief purpose for a reading knowledge of noting the declensions is to determine the form given in dictionaries. It is given with additional forms that illustrate the rest of the declined forms.

39. Comparison of Adjectives.

As in English, there are three degrees of comparison: Positive, Comparative and Superlative. Adjectives are listed in dictionaries in their Positive form, e.g. gravis 'heavy'. The Comparative has two endings, in accordance with such adjectives in the third declension, e.g. masc. and fem. gravior, neut. gravius 'heavier'. The superlative is made with the -issimus ending, and inflected in accordance with adjectives in the first and second declensions.

In Classical Latin the construction of the Comparative with a Standard has that indicated by quam 'than', e.g. gravior quam aquā 'heavier than water'. The Standard is often in the ablative case, which in the first declension has a long -a ending. In older Latin, and occasionally in Classical Latin, the Standard is placed before the Comparative form and has the ablative case, e.g. aquā gravior.

40. Formation of Adverbs.

Many adverbs are listed in dictionaries, and accordingly defined there. When adverbs are made from adjectives that are inflected according to the first and second declensions, they have an -e ending, e.g. alte 'highly'. Other endings are -(i)ter, as in graviter 'heavily', -tim as in privatim 'privatively', -um as in multum 'much'. Some adverbs have changes in the stem, such as bene 'well' beside bonus 'good'.

Comparative and Superlative forms may be illustrated by those of alte, i.e. altius 'more highly', altissime 'most highly'. As in English, these forms may be irregular for common adverbs, e.g. bene, melius, optime 'good, better, best'; male, peius, pessime 'bad, worse, worst; multum, plus, plurimum 'much, more, most'.