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Knowing Nouns In the Latin Language “Latin is a dead language, that is plain to see. First it killed the Romans, and now it’s killing me!” Latin Nouns.

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Presentation on theme: "Knowing Nouns In the Latin Language “Latin is a dead language, that is plain to see. First it killed the Romans, and now it’s killing me!” Latin Nouns."— Presentation transcript:

1 Knowing Nouns In the Latin Language “Latin is a dead language, that is plain to see. First it killed the Romans, and now it’s killing me!” Latin Nouns

2 What is a Noun? A noun is a person, place, thing, or idea. This may seem simple, but there is much more to nouns than that. Nouns bring the actions that the verbs represent out of abstraction and into the real world. Just who was he who did that? To whom did he do it? In what place? Using what tool? Whose tool was it? The verb may be the essential core of a sentence, but the nouns are what make the gossip worthwhile!

3 The Anatomy of a Latin Noun Noun endings are crucial in Latin. They are the only way you know how a noun functions in a sentence. They must be learned BY HEART. The best plan is to make yourself a chart (or really study mine), adding to it as you learn new sets of endings. There are THREE main characteristics by which nouns can be described: gender, number, and case.

4 Gender Words in English have gender. However, we aren’t conscious of it. However, it is easy to think of the word “woman” as feminine, “man” as masculine, and “book” as neuter (neuter is the Latin word for neither). Most of the gender assignations in English make sense, the only odd one being “ship” which is feminine, whereas it should be neuter. In Latin, however, they have many words like “ship” that are assigned a gender based on no real “reason.”

5 Number (The Easy One!) As with verbs, there are two numbers: singular and plural. That’s it. Cool. Finally, something about Latin that is easy!

6 Case (The Complicated One) The concept of grammatical case is difficult to explain. To say that case refers to a system of endings for nouns that reveal a noun’s function in a sentence is a bit bland, but the way to do it. In modern English, we are left only with one case for nouns and three cases for pronouns. The one surviving case is genitive, which shows possession (ex, Donna’s garden).

7 The Declensions (Groups) Nouns are divided into classes called declensions. English Declensions 1 st 2nd 3rd 4 th 5 th6th Car churchox goosedeerlouse Dog tomatochild footmoosemouse Can you see on what basis these words are divided into these declensions (i.e., groups)?

8 How Many Declensions? Latin has five declensions, plus a handful of irregular nouns. Because of all the cases involved, Latin nouns have more than just a plural to worry about. Every noun can take TEN forms, one for each of the five cases, singular and plural.

9 First Declension The gender of all first declension words is feminine unless the word refers to a male being (e.g., nauta, “sailor”).ala “wing” Sing.PluralSing.Plural Nominative-a-aealaalae Genitive-ae-arumalaealarum Dative-ae-isalaealis Accusative-am-asalamalas Ablative-a-isalaalis

10 Second Declension Second declension words are either masculine or neuter. Sing.PluralSing.Plural Nominative-us-iservusservi Genitive-i-orumserviservorum Dative-o-isservoservis Accusative-um-osservumservos Ablative-o-isservoservis puer, ager, and templum are all second declension words and follow the same format, except the nominative singular is just the word as listed above. Also, templum has two differences: the nominative and accusative plural end with –a. Also, ager is declined in an odd way—the “e” is dropped and you have instead agri, agro, agrum, etc.

11 Third Declension MOST LATIN NOUNS ARE THIRD DECLENSION, so it is an extremely important group. They also constitute the least friendly of the declensions. They aren’t hostile, but they are very particular. Third declension has words of ALL Genders. There is no predictable nominative singular ending in third declension. You must learn each one as you learn your vocabulary. Many 3 rd declensions have stem changes (like ager). The endings are the same for masculine and feminine words. Neuters follow the double neuter rule (-nom. and accus. forms are always the same and nominative plural always ends in –a).

12 Third Declension Chart  M/F Sing. Plural Sing. Plural Nominative -varies -es homohomines Genitive -is -um hominishominum Dative -i -ibus homini hominibus Accusative -em -es hominem homines Ablative -e -ibus homine hominibus N Sing. Plural Sing. Plural Nominative -varies -a iteritinera Genitive -is -um itineris itinerum Dative -i -ibus itineriitineribus Accusative -varies -a iteritinera Ablative -re -ibus itinereitineribus

13 Fourth Declension Fourth declension words are masculine. There are two common exceptions, namely manus (“hand”) and domus (“house”), which are feminine. (There are also a few neuters, but they are really uncommon). Sing.PluralSing.Plural Nom. -us-usmanusmanus Gen. -us-uummanusmanuum Dat. -ui-ibusmanuimanibus Accus.-um -usmanummanus Abl. -u-ibusmanumanibus

14 Fifth Declension Fifth declension words are all feminine with one exception—dies (“day”), which is masculine. There are no neuters. 5 th declension has the smallest population of all the declensions. Ironically, the most common noun I the whole Latin Language, res (“thing”) belongs to this group.Sing. PluralSingular Plural Nom.-es -esfides fides Gen.-ei -erumfidei fiderum Dat.-ei -ebusfidei fidebus Accus.-em -esfidem fides Abl.-e -ebusfide fidebus

15 A Little Further Explanation Latin nouns are classified into declensions based on how they form their genitive case. The genitive case is the second one down on the charts, right after the nominative. When you look up a noun in the dictionary, or when you learn your vocabulary, you will find dictionary entries that look like this: terra, terrae, f. ground

16 terra, terrae, f. land terra is the nominative case form. This is especially important for the third declension words since there is no regular, predictable nominative ending for the third declension words. terrae is the genitive form. It is extremely important. It tells you two crucial things. First, it says what declension the word belongs to. Their nominative forms or genders don’t play a role in that decision. On the next page, I will have a breakdown on how you can tell them apart.

17 The Chart All nouns with a genitive in –ae are first declension. All nouns with a genitive in –i second declension. All nouns with a genitive in –is are third declension. All nouns with a genitive in –us are fourth declension. All nouns with a genitive in –ei are fifth declension

18 More about the genitive In addition to signaling declension, the genitive form shows you whether the word has a stem change, and if it does, what the change is. For example this word: deus. deus, dei, m. god. Deus is second declension and becomes dei when you decline it. Likewise, the word rex, regis, m. king shows you that it is third declension. The genitive entry shows you that the “x” will be dropped and a “g” added. The “is” on regis shows that it is third declension

19 Quick Recap of the Cases As a Latin verb has various inflections or terminations which signal its particular role in a given sentence, so a Latin noun has various terminations to show whether it is used as the subject or the object of a verb, whether it indicates the idea of possession, and so on. The various inflected forms of a noun are called “cases.”

20 Nominative The Romans used the nominative case most commonly to indicate the subject of a verb. Example: Tom is a good sport. Tom is the subject.

21 Genitive Case When one noun was used to modify another, the Romans put the modifying noun in the genitive case. The genitive case is generally used to denote possession and the meaning of the genitive case can generally be ascertained by translating it with the preposition “of.” A Latin noun in the genitive case usually follows the noun it modifies. Example: Let’s go to Tom’s house. OR Let’s go to the house of Tom.

22 Dative Case The Romans used the dative to mark the person of thing indirectly affected by the action of the verb. The nouns in the dative case are usually indirect objects and can be determined by using the words “to” or “for” with the noun. The emperor explained the situation to the senators. “Situation” is the direct object and “senators” is the indirect object (note the “to”)

23 Accusative Case The Romans used the accusative case to indicate the direct object of the action of the verb, the person or thing directly affected by the action of the verb. I took the “dog” for a walk. Dog is the direct object.

24 Ablative Case The ablative case we sometimes call the adverbial case because it was the case used by the Romans when they wished to modify, or limit, the verb by such ideas as means (by what), agent (by whom), accompaniment (with whom), manner (how), place (where; from which), time (when or within which). The Romans used the ablative sometimes with a preposition and sometimes without one. There is no simple rule of thumb for translating this complex case. HOWEVER, you will find little difficulty when a Latin preposition is used such as (a/ab, by or from; cum, with; de and e/ ex, from; in, in or on; pro, in front of ; sine, without ; sub, under). Example: The soldier killed the enemy with a sword.

25 Vocative Case The Romans used the vocative case, sometimes with the interjection O (example O fortuna) to directly address a person or thing. In modern punctuation the vocative (or noun of direct address) is separated from the rest of the sentence by commas.

26 That’s it. That’s Nouns. All you need to do now is memorize and practice!!!!

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