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grammar [←«γραμματική τέχνη»]

“Just because you use Greek letters, that doesn't make it more precise.”
--Matthew S. “Matt” Hecht (underappreciated, albeit overly theoretical, computer scientist):
ca. Summer 1977

The key (or advice for readers) for issues of content and its presentation that are peculiar to this Web-site, e.g.: now constitutes a separate “Key” Web page within this site.

Sources routinely consulted by the author of this Web page are identified on a separate “Sources” Web page within this site.

For quicker access to entries that begin with specific letters of the Latin alphabet, use the links below:

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Note †: This Web page is not an official part of the Web site for Sacred Heart Traditional Catholic Church (SHTCC).  Development, hosting, and funding of this Web page is independent of SHTCC. 

The content of this Web page is provided by this site's webmaster as supplemental material that should be understood to be secondary to the official mission of this Web site[*]. In particular, SHTCC has not provided any of the content of this Web page; text and links presented herein have not been approved by the pastor or other clergy of SHTCC.  Thus, SHTCC is not responsible for its contents.

To reduce--if not prevent--confusion herein when using demonstrative pronouns to refer to Web sites, “this Web page” or “this Web sitealways refers to the Web site for SHTCC; whereas “that Web page” or “that Web sitealways refers some other Web site being discussed, even when it is the subject of discussion.
[Note *: As a summary, the official mission of this Web site is to make the current schedule of SHTCC Masses and devotions available via the Internet, especially to potential new parishioners and other Catholic visitors in this tourism-intensive region. ]


ablative (abl.)
A grammatical case in Latin used for various purposes, which has no direct parallel in modern English, but some of whose functions correspond to the instrumental case of Old English. A phrase in the ablative is practically an adverbial phrase, expressing without prepositions a variety of ideas for which English requires prepositions, e.g.: agency, cause, manner, means, separation, specification, and (points or ranges in) time. Also used for the object of less than 13 of Latin prepositions. (The remainder use the accusative case.)

Among the uses of the ablative noteworthy for Roman Catholics:
[Note ¢: A comparable construct in English (where it's known as the nominative absolute) would be exemplified by the 1st clause (i.e.: between the beginning and the 2nd comma) (shown in bold) of Amendment II in the U.S. Bill of Rights:
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”
Worded with the legalistic formality of the late 18th century, the participle “being” is explicit, and because the verb in the main clause is in the 3rd person, the modal auxiliaryshall” in “the right ... shall not be infringed” does not merely express time in the future, but actually specifies a legal mandate.

Fascinatingly, most of this Amendment's vocabulary is derived from, akin to, or at least cognate with, words in Classical Latin, i.e.: rēgula”, “mīlitia”, “necessārius”, “sēcūritās”, “statio”, “rectum” →“right” (akin), “populus”, maybe “capio” (“take”) or “carpo” (“take or enjoy”) →“keep” (cognate?), “fero” →“bear” (cognate), “arma” (most narrowly meaning defensive weapons), “ne” & “non”, and “infringo”. (No, the author of this Web-page is not contemplating, nor hinting at, any hostile plans nor acts.) ]
From German “ab”, prep. meaning “from” + “Laut, -[e]s/-e ”, noun meaning “sound”.

Inflection by changing an interior sound instead of changing or adding an ending, e.g.: English “swim, swam, swum”; modern German “Bruder” (sg.), “Brüder” (pl.).
accusative (acc.)
A grammatical case in Latin used for various purposes, whose primary function corresponds to the objective case in modern English as used for a direct object. Also used for the object of more than 23 of Latin prepositions. Its inflected ending is different from that for the dative case, but sometimes the same as the nominative case.

Among uses of the accusative worth noting:
[Note @: “dom·us” is grammatically a mutt: Formally a 4th-declension noun, it's also encountered with 2nd-declension endings as options for 5 of the 10 ordinary combinations of case & number (3 of those 5 are more common than the proper 4th-declension endings). ]
active (act.) voice
The grammatical voice (q.v.) in Latin in which the subject of a sentence or clause is on the giving side. This is grammatically the simplest for expressing a relationship (e.g.: English “Emperor Nero persecuted Christians”).

Its opposite voice is the passive.
appositive (app.)
A noun that's adjacent to, or near, another noun (usually closely following it), placed to provide an alternative name or add descriptive information. In Latin, apposition is conveyed by using the same case for both nouns. In English--less so in Britain, but more so in the U.S.A.-- this meaning is conveyed by preceding a noun by the descriptive noun plus the word “of”, even when needlessly redundant, e.g.:
Concepts that might look like an appositive in English can be expressed by prepositional phrases in Latin, especially introduced by 2 prepositions that take the ablative case. But neither construct is an appositive; unlike in English, an appositive would not be introduced by a prepositional phrase in Latin (examples below are from goldsmith-intensive Exodus, which might be uniquely illustrative, where “aur·um, -i” (n.) is the noun for the precious metal):
Other concepts that also might look like an appositive in English can be expressed by ordinary adjective phrases in Latin, e.g.: the phrase translated as a “crown of gold” (direct object) appears in the Vulgate [Ex. 37:2,12] as “coronam auream” (acc.), where “aure·us | -a | -um” is the adjective for the color or metal (more precisely translatable as “golden”).

Alas, in English, the syntax for appositive nouns is ambiguous, easily confusing a listener unfamiliar with the specific proper nouns. In the U.S.A., one hears, from time to time, not only “capital of Florida”, but also “capital of Tallahassee”, each phrase intended to signify the city in Florida that is uniquely named Tallahassee.[*]
[Note #: The names of the last 4 months of the modern English calendar are not derived from proper nouns in Latin, but instead formed by appending the endings of the adjectives-of-3-terminations to the indeclinable cardinal numbers. What native speakers of English think of as “names of months” originated as (apparently special) ordinal adjectives to distinguish the 7th through 10th months of the Roman year, as reckoned from the ancient status of “Martius” (m.) as the 1st month. That numbering became obsolete more than 2 millennia ago, during centuries of revisions and ad hoc tweaks to the Roman calendar, as it was transformed from 10 months in ancient times, by which Rome's year had been left approximately 9 weeks short of a complete circuit of the Sun, opening with “Martius” (m.), to 12 months, opening with “Iānuār·ius, -ī” (m.) and “Februār·ius, -i;” (m.). Even in classical Rome, authors famous for Latin were already using those adjectives as substantives, omitting the “mēns·is, -is” (m.), meaning “month”, when other words allowed it to be inferred. Nonetheless, the masculine endings continued to be used, to agree with the gender of the noun being omitted.[+]

Note +: Cf. dates in the texts of papal writings, via the links in bulleted items under “antimodernism”, for more modern and accessible examples of dates written in fluent Latin, e.g.: Pope Pius V in his bull known as “Quo primum” (1570).

Note *: There is no county named Tallahassee from which the city needs to be distinguished. Unlike, e.g., Silicon Valley's “City of Santa Clara” (official wording of its name), a municipality within the “County of Santa Clara” (official wording of its name) . Santa Clara also has an eponymous private university, the state's first to open its doors to students. It was founded by Jesuits (1851) on the grounds of the Franciscan Mission Santa Clara de Asís (est. 1777) as they survived the Mexican secularization. More than a quarter-century ago, that university changed its official name to Santa Clara University (1985--present): S.C.U., from its previously official names as the “Santa Clara College” (1851--1912) and the “University of Santa Clara” (1912--1985). This was not to restore a Latin-friendly appositive name, but to avoid continuing confusion of its U. S.C. with the more widely known parvenue U. s.C. (opened in 1880) down in southern California. Readers from the Deep South might be pleased to learn that the University of South Carolina trumps both the above Left Coast claimants to the abbreviation U.S.C., having been founded in 1801, and in 1865, amid the devastation of Gen. Sherman's March to the Sea, having been reëstablished & expanded into a university by the state's General Assembly, assigning it the postbellum name that established the primacy of its claim to the initials U.S.C.  But the webmaster digresses. ]


Summary:  An initial part of a word to which inflected endings are appended that signify its case, tense, &c.  For any particular word, this part is sometimes identical to, but sometimes different from, the stem for that word.
(The embarrassingly incomplete initial entry has been removed to a nonpublic Web page to complete its writing. Thus, no link to that nonpublic entry is available.)


case [ D R A F T ]
A major type of inflection for nouns, pronouns, and adjectives:
common (c.) [ D R A F T ]
The term for the noun's gender does not indicate that it's a commonplace thing, nor imply that it's frequently spoken or written. Instead, it refers to a grammatical gender that's treated as the union (i.e.: sharing or combination) of masculine & feminine gender.[*] The scarce examples found thus far identify animals, and seem to be closely connected with a comparable-sounding word in Greek:
[Note *: Sooo, how does common gender work? Does it have special consequences for inflected endings? To identify a natural gender in any particular instance (e.g.: hog vs. sow), without the benefit of grammatical gender that follows the biological gender (e.g.: lacking the distinction of “gallus” vs. “gallina”), would one rely on the inflected endings of adjectives, or absent them, by inserting gratuitous demonstrative pronouns? Hmmm? Good questions. ]
conjugation (conj.) [ D R A F T ]
A major type of inflection for verbs. In general, the conjugations can be distinguished by the endings of the first 2 principal parts:
As a practical matter, the list above might best be treated as identifying the table in a Latin grammar textbook[@] that should be used to look up the exact forms for the each of the moods, voices, tenses, persons, and numbers of a verb in the identified conjugation (e.g.: in Latin Fundamentals, the tables for the 4 regular conjugations, as presented in its appendix cleared of almost all explanatory text, occupy 11 pages).

Visitors might be dispirited to discover that even after absorbing the details imposed by the 4 conjugations, there are verbs that are exceptions to those details, in various major or minor ways. Notable examples of verbs exhibiting major differences--arguably conjugations unto themselves--are words expressing fundamental ideas that can be translated into English as “to be”, “to bear”, “to give”, “to go”, “to happen”, “to remember”, and “to wish” (10 more pages in its appendix).
[Note @: It's certainly possible that the World Wide Web contains authoritative Web sites (i.e.: whose content is the work of people who've earned college degrees in Latin literature or closely related ‘classical studies’), but this webmaster, who prudently equipped himself with a printed college-level textbook decades ago, hasn't had the need to look for them. ]


dative (dat.)
Typically corresponds to the objective case in English when used for an indirect object, although without the Latin preposition corresponding to “to” or “for” that would typically be prefixed in English, e.g.: “donate money to the parish”, albeit with some exceptions without prepositions, e.g.: “give the boy a missal”. In classical Latin, the case has additional functions, also without any preposition:
The inflected endings for this case are different from that for the accusative case, but often the same as the ablative case, and sometimes the same as the genitive case.
[Note #: The source offers no explanation for why the verbs couldn't have been transitive; it might simply have been a grammatical conclusion from the syntax of the language as it existed in its prime. ]
declension (decl.) [ D R A F T ]
A major type of inflection for nouns and (loosely) adjectives.[*]  In general, the declension is implied by the endings of their nominative singular and genitive singular forms[#], taken as a pair:
[Note *: How complicated was this for its own native speakers? It wasn't until the final quarter of the age of classical Latin: roughly between the Crucifixion and the Roman destruction of the Second Temple (in Jerusalem), that Quintus Remmius Palaemon (fl. A.D. 35--70) of Vicentia became the first to figure out 4--but not all 5--of the declensions.

Note #: It might be worth advising readers of this entry of a few points that--some time after they're settled--will be presented in the key for this Web site:
  • ‘∫’ or ‘∫’, or ‘…’ or ‘…’, or ‘Ϛ’ or ‘ϛ’, when followed immediately by a letter (e.g.: “∫l” or “…l”), means the stem  that ends with the given letter (e.g.: ‘ l ’).
  • The white-bullet symbol ‘ ◦ ’ (apparently also intended to be the glyph for the APL functional symbol jot) is used herein to signify a null letter, i.e.: a place where letter(s) might be expected, but there aren't any. Thus also to show the original position of a sound that's disappeared, e.g.: as an instance of syncope. The symbol is not only not a part of English, it's also not a part of Latin, Greek, nor Etruscan. So every one of those symbols needs to be omitted to reproduce the actual pronunciation or spelling.
  • The related notation “ -◦ ” signifies a null grammatical ending, so a word that ends “ ·◦ ” is a word that is identical to the stem (i.e.: the result of appending a null grammatical ending: stem + null = stem).

Yes, some of this notation has some ugliness, but some more desirable alternatives had to be abandoned, to avoid running afoul of technical issues with certain Web browsers. [Unicode 'combining diacriticals' (e.g.: breve, macron, slash a.k.a. solidus, rev.-solidus, underline) fail in IE 6! (excepting acute)]. [Unicode 'math ops.' empty-set (nonWGL4) fails in IE 6]. [Unicode 'geom. shapes' inv.-bullet, inv.-white-circle (both WGL4) fail in IE 6!].

Note ##: Alas, this entry might remain marked as “D R A F T ” for quite a while yet, while wrestling with devising a syntax that adequately describes it, can be faithfully rendered by troublesome Web browsers, but hasn't become too obscure for readers to comprehend. ]
dual [ D R A F T ]
See number. Although dual  does not exist as a distinct inflected  form in Latin, it does--or did--exist in some Indoëuropean languages, notably Old English (a.k.a. Anglosaxon) and Sanskrit , plus the Afroäsiatic language Egyptian.


(No entries begin with ‘e’.)


feminine (f.)
Nouns corresponding to female attributes and roles typically have feminine gender. Among inanimate objects, this grammatical gender is typically used for the names of cities, countries, islands, and trees. In modern biological nomenclature, the latter has been generalized into assigning this grammatical gender to the scientific names of all plants. Among abstract nouns derived from verb forms, this grammatical gender seems to be used for a disproportionately high number of them.

Among the more intriguing or illustrative examples:
[Note †: Upon further review, not only the word, but also its English definition, was deleted by the webmaster. The former out of concern that disclosing it herein would activate Web-page filtering software that could be indiscriminately detrimental to this Web site. The latter out of concern over potential objections from clergy or parishoners. ]


gender [ D R A F T ]
A major type of inflection for nouns, pronouns, and adjectives that distinguishes inanimate objects from animate objects. For the former, gender will seem to the casual observer to have been arbitrarily assigned, although some themes may eventually dawn. For the latter, gender may distinguish their biological sεx, or it might also seem arbitrarily assigned. The following list is in the customary order for grammatical tables in Latin (as distinct from the order in which a biologist might prefer to place them), except that the last may be absent:
genitive (gen.)
Typically corresponds not only to the possessive case expressed by “ 's” or “ ' ” in English, but also to the possession or other connection expressed by a prepositional phrase introduced by “of” in English (there is no syntax using a preposition for this purpose in Latin). Its inflected ending is different from that for the accusative case, but sometimes the same as the dative case. Its singular ending is often the same as that for the nominative plural. Although a noun in the genitive is practically an adjective, Latin also has distinct adjectives closely related to various nouns whose genitive would've seemed adequate for the language's needs (however, the endings of the adjectives must match the case & number of the noun they modify, instead of being limited to the genitive case & number(s) of the possessor(s)).


(No entries begin with ‘h’.)


imperative (imper.)
The mood (thus applying only to verbs) that expresses a command for action, without regard for whether it results in acceptance or rejection. This is an overly broad or oversimplified definition.

It does not have an obviously opposite mood, although the subjunctive may express an apparent request  that according to certain customs, is really a command expressed in a formally polite style.
indicative (indic.)
The mood (thus applying only to verbs) that expresses action that happened, is happening, or will happen (i.e.: according to its tense) unconditionally, and without regard for its desirability. This is an overly broad or oversimplified definition; Latin as actually spoken or written exhibits numerous exceptions.

Its opposite mood, expressing conditional action, is the subjunctive.
A noticeable change in the form of a word, typically in either the last few letters of its ending, or in the pronunciation of those last few letters [#], to indicate a significant change in its meaning. Inflection is expressed as the largely independent combination of different characteristics, depending on a word's part of speech:
It's the inflection  of Latin words that allows an overbearing Roman centurion (played by John Cleese) to dismiss the frantic explanation of the suddenly discovered graffiti-painting PFJ[*] member Brian Cohen (played by Graham Chapman), that his message “Romanes  eunt  domus ” is “Romans go home!”  But in Latin, it's gibberish! [†]  To accurately express such a demand, as the centurion sternly corrects its grammar in detail, Latin inflection requires instead “Romani  ite  domum ”.  Thus nominative plural for the 1st word; imperative mood for the 2nd word; and accusative singular, signifying the location-to-which, for the 3rd word (an example of a special case in which the common noun is not the object of a preposition).
[Note #: In the sense of whether the vowel in the inflected ending is pronounced as long or short, e.g.: “cens·us, -ūs” (m.). Sometimes, native speakers of English who want to appear learnèd pluralize this word, whose singular is spelled in English identically to the Latin, as “censi ”. But the Latin word is actually in the 4th declension--not the 2nd declension that's much more common for words whose nominative singular ends in “-us”, with a short final vowel. Because of being in the 4th declension, its genitive singular is identical to its nominative and accusative plurals; each is “censūs”, with the macron on (i.e.: the horizontal bar above) the ‘u’ signifying that the final vowel is a long vowel. In Latin, a short vowel is not considered to be a distinct or separate letter from the corresponding long vowel.

Note *: The People's Front of Judea: A fictitious antiRoman radical nationalist group, which should, of course, never be confused with its fictitious antiRoman political rivals, especially the Judean People's Front, nor also the Popular Front of Judea, nor the Campaign for a Free Galilee.

Note †: “-es” ? Meaningless for a 2nd-declension noun. It'd be nominative plural for some 3rd-declension nouns, but that's not where the word belongs. “domus ” is plainly nominative singular, so what could the graffiti possibly mean? “Home” singular + “they go” plural. Plus a reference to Romans--somewhere or other--that's left hanging because of the lack of any valid Latin inflected ending for a 2nd-declension noun or substantive. ]


(No entries begin with ‘j’.)


(No entries begin with ‘k’.)


locative (loc.)
Expresses more-or-less stationary location, typically as a proper noun for a place, without any Latin preposition [@]. Typically, it would be translated to English prefixed by “at”, e.g.: “Rōmae” is not only locative singular, meaning “at Rome”, but also, as for other proper names of locations in the 1st declension, genitive singular, meaning “of Rome” (fortunately for clarity with this example, the function of the genitive of the name of The City is well served by the often-encountered adjective “Rōman·us | -a | -um ”, meaning “Roman”). This grammatical case also applies to 2 generic-location common nouns:
[Note @: When a word identifying a location is in ablative case and prefixed by the Latin preposition “in”, it is also expressing stationary location, in the same sense as the locative. If prefixed instead with any of the Latin prepositions “ā”, “ab”, “”, “ē”, “ex”, it is expressing motion away from the identified location. If the name of a town or city likewise in the ablative, but without a preposition, it is expressing motion away from the identified location. If instead in the accusative case, and prefixed by the Latin preposition “ad” or “in”, or the name of a town or city likewise in the accusative, but without a preposition, it is expressing motion toward the identified location. ]


masculine (m.)
Nouns corresponding to male attributes and roles typically have masculine gender. Among inanimate objects, this grammatical gender is typically used for the names of mountains, rivers, and winds. Among abstract nouns, this grammatical gender is typically (but counterFreudianly) used for months (of the year). This gender is also typically used for peoples, in a more-or-less ethnic sense (but see exception below).

Among the more intriguing or illustrative examples:
A major type of inflection of verbs that expresses distinctions among the attitude of the speaker or writer:
Items listed above are distinguished by overly broad or oversimplified definitions (especially the latter 2 items); Latin as actually spoken or written exhibits numerous exceptions.


neuter (n. | neut.) [ D R A F T ]
Among the more intriguing or illustrative examples:
nominative (nom.)
Typically corresponds to the subjective case in English, used not only for the subject, but also for a predicate phrase following a linking verb [#]. Its inflected ending is different from that for the dative case, but sometimes the same as the accusative case. Its plural ending is often the same as that for the genitive singular.
[Note #: The author of this Web page has decided to avoid the learnèd Latinate term for such a verb, out of concern that it might inappropriately trigger a naïve Web-content filter, causing it to block display of this page.
A type of inflection of adjectives, nouns, pronouns, and verbs, that expresses the quantity of individuals the word is referring to, i.e.:


(No entries begin with ‘o’.)


part-of-speech  [DRAFT]
participle (part. | ple.)
An inflected form of a verb that is used as an adjective, thus combining characteristics of verbs and adjectives, each of which must be accomodated. The characteristics for Latin (where ‘×’ connects the separate characteristics that are combined):
[Note ♫: If Latin had a verb meaning “to frame an image”, then its future-passive participle could be used to express the title of the 1969 rock album “Suitable for Framing” with a single word. ]
passive (pass.) voice
The grammatical voice (q.v.) in Latin in which the subject of a sentence or clause is on the receiving side. This is grammatically more complicated, because identifying the giving side requires including a prepositional phrase: Because a passive-voice sentence is grammatically complete without the prepositional phrase, it's often appealing to people, impersonal corporations, or governments who have something to hide: By omitting that phrase, they can avoid admitting guilt or responsibility (e.g.: “Rome was burned”), or otherwise conceal information or sources (e.g.: “Christians were blamed”). This shady rhetorical usage has been dubbed the “weaseling passive”.

Its opposite voice is the active.
perfect (perf.) tense  [DRAFT]
person (pers.)  [DRAFT]
The only category of modern English grammar that has retained the inflection that characterizes many categories of words in Latin. The persons in modern English pronouns are a remnant of persons in Anglosaxon a.k.a. Old English pronouns, i.e. (parenthesized words provide transliteration of unfamiliar or confusing obsolete letters, as a more pronounceable alternative [+]):

1st pers. sg. dl.[#] pl.
nom. ic | ih ƿit (vvit) ƿē (vvē)
gen. mīn uncer ūre
dat., acc., instr.[##] unc ūs

2nd pers. sg. dl. pl.
nom. þū (thū) ᵹit (ġit) ᵹē (ġē)
gen. þīn (thīn) incer ēoƿer (ēovver)
dat., acc., instr.[##] þē (thē) inc ēoƿ (ēovv)

Readers who tried pronouncing the 2nd pers. pronouns might have recognized the quaint pronoun sequences now spelled “thou”, “thine”, “thee”, and “ye”, “your”, “you”. These were merely distinctions of grammatical number; O.E. did not have any distinction of familiar  vs. respectful  forms of pronouns. The distinct singular vs. plural roots avoided the modern need for the distinct modern plural form that's arguably provided by the regional Southern-U.S. “yall” (which most properly never expresses the singular) and its possessive “yall's” (which perhaps ought to be spelled without the apostrophe, following the modern model of the possessive predicate adjective “yours”, which properly has no apostrophe).

Under the influence of the Norman French that was the native language of the last successful invaders of England, the 2nd-pers. plural began to be used from Middle English into Early Modern English (early 13th through late 17th or early 18th C.) as the respectful form of the 2nd-pers. singular, as it is in numerous modern languages spread throughout dramatically different linguistic families.[*]  In contrast, earlier English translations of the Bible, e.g.: the Challoner-Douay Old Testament (1749) and the Anglicans' purportedly Authorized Version of King James (1611), retain the singular “thou”, “thy” (sometimes “thine” in KJV), and “thee” for individuals, not replacing it with the plural form signifying respect, e.g., in the initial conversation at the Burning Bush where God assigns Moses his mission [Ex. 3, 4], nor in dialogues between Moses, Aaron, and Pharao [Ex. 7, 10].[**]  Using the invader-contrived respectful forms would produce a less literal translation, distancing it from the fully inflected pronouns of the original source languages.
[Note +:
  • An early convention for printing English with movable type used “vv” instead of ‘ w ’. It's followed herein (albeit verrry experimentally) in transliterating Old English. Many suppliers of movable type, predominately based in Continental Europe, didn't provide the newfangled letter, because Latin and the European languages descended from it did not have it in their native alphabets.
  • As the first letter in a word, ‘ ġ ’ (i.e.: ‘g’-with-dot-above) should be pronounced as the English consonantal ‘ y ’.
  • While on the topic of letters “not ... in their ... alphabets”, Internet Explorer version 6, with which some users on fixed incomes may still be stuck, will not display the distinctive O.E. letters, not even after selecting a ‘Web-page font’ that contains them.

Note #: Items for the dual number were integrated from table 5.6 (‘5. Pronouns’) in Peter S. Baker 2012 : The Electronic Introduction to Old English: “An on-line analogue of Introduction to Old English, 3rd ed.”. Wiley-Blackwell: Oxford. <http://www.wmich.edu/medieval/resources/IOE/inflpron.html>, which does not use the antiquarian-favored Latinized-Runic letter ‘ƿ ’ (‘wynn’), nor does it use that consonant's typographically early pure-Latin-alphabet transliteration as ‘vv’ (shown above).

Note ##: Baker does not present any forms for the instrumental (instr.) case for personal pronouns (tables 5.1, 5.2, 5.3, 5.6) in his page cited above.

Note *: Notable among the few exceptions among modern languages are, e.g., the maybe-Altaic maybe-isolate languages Japanese and Korean, the Finnoügric language Hungarian (but not Finnish itself), the Indoëuropean languages Iberian Spanish and Polish, and the Sinotibetan language Chinese. Per “T-V distinction”, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T-V_distinction>Cave ! Wikipedia itself warns that the “article has multiple issues”.

Note **: Admittedly only spot-checks, but by inspecting dialogues known to involve God, Moses, and Pharao, each speaking in the 2nd person, e.g.: in the initial conversation at the Burning Bush assigning Moses his mission [Ex. 3 & 4], and in dialogues between Moses, Aaron, and Pharao [Ex. 7 & 10], and finding no exceptions at all, it seems likely that the pronouns read there are representative of the translations.
plural (pl.)  [DRAFT]
See number.
principal parts
The 4 or fewer inflected forms of verbs that provide the models from which all the forms of its moods, voices, tenses, numbers, and persons can be derived. The set of parts for any verb identifies its conjugation.

The principal parts for verbs in Latin (customarily given in this order):
Part of a word--a prefix or a suffix--indicating negation or absence, directly from Latin “prīvātiv-”: adj. derived from participle “prīvāt·us, | -a | -um” of “prīv·ō, -āre”, meaning either “to deprive” or “to free from”.

Among the privatives in English, e.g., the prefix “un-”, and the suffix “-less”. Among those in Latin, e.g., the prefices “in-” and “non-” (the latter apparently attested as meaning “not-” almost exclusively in adverbs and pronouns)[#].
[Note #: In nouns and adjectives, “non-” contributes to a meaning that's derived from the indeclinable cardinal number “novem”, perhaps most recognizable in the ordinal number “nōn·us | -a | -um”, meaning “ninth”, thus the day known as “nōn·ae, -ārum” in each month of the Roman calendar. ]


(No entries begin with ‘q’.)


(No entries begin with ‘r’.)


singular (sg.)  [DRAFT]
See number.
Summary:  An initial part of a word to which inflected endings are appended that signify its case, tense, &c.  For any particular word, this part is sometimes identical to, but sometimes different from, the base for that word.
(The embarrassingly incomplete initial entry has been removed to a nonpublic Web page to complete its writing. Thus, no link to that nonpublic entry is available.)
subjunctive (subj.[#])
The mood (thus applying only to verbs) that expresses action that happened, is happening, or will happen (i.e.: according to its tense) only if a command, condition, musing, or wish that's expressed either as a sentence unto itself, or in another clause in the same sentence, is satisfied. This is an overly broad or oversimplified definition; Latin as actually spoken or written exhibits numerous exceptions.

Its opposite mood, expressing unconditional action, is the indicative.
[Note #: On this Web site, the abbreviation “subj.” never signifies the subject of a sentence. For the most applicable grammatical distinction for Latin inflection, see the nominative (nom.) case.]
substantive (subst.)  [DRAFT]
An adjective used as a noun, sometimes translated into English by appending words like “one(s)” or “thing(s)”.

Using a participle as a substantive is quite common in Latin.
Greek «συνκοπή» (“syncopḗ ”), meaning “(something) cut short”. As a grammatical term, it's the loss of midword sounds in pronunciation or spelling.

Syncope is exemplified in English pronunciation by the names of some English cities that were once outposts of the Roman army, whose spelling now ends “-cester” (from Latin “castr·a, -ōrum” (n.), although grammatically plural, meaning a single military “camp”), e.g.: pronunciation of “Gloucester” →“Glo◦stэr”[-] in England and Massachusetts. It's exemplified in English spelling by the archaic or ecclesiastical plural “brethr·en”, i.e.: “brother·” (O.E. “brōthor·”) (sg.) + Germanic plural ending “-en ”[#], thus “breth◦r·en” (pl.).

Syncope is especially noticeable in Etruscan: an ancient language of Italy in which words were always spelled in whatever way they were pronounced at whatever date they were written. It's relevant herein, even though it's not an Indoëuropean language (a major difference from Latin, Greek, English, &c.), because Etruscan was an intermediate step for the arrival in Latin of some words that originated in Greek. The pronunciation of Etruscan, over centuries, developed a strong accent on the 1st syllables of words. Its impact, over centuries, was to weaken vowels in following syllables, until some vowels disappeared from those words (‘-a-’ → ‘-e-’ → ‘-i-’ → ‘-◦-’)[-], e.g.[*]: Greek «Αλέξανδρος» (“Aléxandros ”) →Etruscan “Al◦csentre ” →Etruscan “El◦cs◦ntre ”.
[Note -: The white-bullet symbol ‘ ◦ ’ is used herein to show the original position of a sound that's disappeared. The symbol is not only not a part of English, it's also not a part of Etruscan. So every one of those symbols needs to be omitted to reproduce the actual pronunciation or spelling.[*]  Herein, the Cyrillic letter e (‘ э ’) has been substituted for the intended International Phonetic Alphabet letter schwa (which looks like a lower-case ‘ e ’ rotated 180°, signifying an ‘ e ’ sound so short that it's nearly absent, which is unable to be displayed by certain Web browsers).

Note #: In contrast to modern German, which doesn't form the plural of its corresponding word by appending its own plural ending “-en ”, but in this instance, instead uses ablaut, i.e.: “Bruder” (sg.), “Brüder” (pl.).

Note *: Greek « ξ » would be more accurately transliterated to modern Latin alphabet as ‘ k͡s ’ or ‘ ks ’, instead of the ambiguous ‘ x ’. The Etruscan words above are shown transliterated into the modern Latin alphabet, instead of being shown in their own distinctive alphabets (which would run afoul of technical issues with certain Web browsers). ]


A major type of inflection for verbs, which relates the time of an action to its degree of completion.
Customarily presented in tabular form in this order:
Not all verbs have forms for all the above tenses, nor do all the above tenses exist in moods other than the active.
In Classical Latin, time is expressed by words or phrases in 2 (grammatical) cases, depending on its meaning:
The preposition style, which is a style that's more obvious to native speakers of English, seems to be merely an alternative style for Classical Latin. But it seems to be the primary style for Ecclesiastical Latin.[#]

Beware that an introductory “cum” (earlier “com”) might not be the familiar preposition meaning “(together) with” and requiring the ablative. It might instead be the subordinating conjunction “cum” (less properly “quum”, earlier “quom”), which has 4 related functions in Classical Latin.[¢]
[Note *: Latin Fundamentals, acc.: §172 (p. 130), abl.: §139 (p. 89).

Note #: The webmaster confesses that the claim is not the result of systematic analysis, but anecdotal, from years of hearing the reading of the Gospel opened with the formulaic “In illo tempore, dixit Iesus” (“At that time, Jesus said”).

Note ¢: “cum”-temporal (incl. -circumstantial): §250 (p. 251--253). The 2 other functions of “cum” are -causal: §251 (p. 253--254) and -concessive: §252 (p. 254), are only tenuously related to time, although they'd provide more examples of the complexity of Latin, in case any readers feel a need for more.

The episode recounted in Mark [1:32] and Luke [4:40] was indeed an instance of waiting for the end of a Jewish Sabbath, thus the expiration of restrictions on administering remedies and healing that were in effect, according to the article “Sabbath”, by Florentine Bechtel (1912) in the Catholic Encyclopedia, vol. 13, <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13287b.htm>. ]


Latin nominative-case ending for words assumed, by the naïve readers now abundant, to form their plurals by replacing “-us” (short final vowel) with “-ī ”. And for readers having at least a vague conception of grammatical gender, to signify masculine (m.) gender. Alas, Latin ain't that simple--not even at the middle-school level. Consider just 3 common ‘gotcha’s:


vocative (voc.)
Corresponds to direct address in English, encountered in the Roman Catholic liturgy in prayers directly calling upon God (or individual members of the Holy Trinity), the Blessed Virgin Mary, or the saints. Its inflected ending is the same as the nominative case, albeit with systematic exceptions:
[Note #: Doubly excepting, e.g., “agnus, -ī ” (m.), classically meaning a lamb, in the Mass. During the Communion prayers, the celebrant priest appeals to the “Lamb of God”, but as “Agnus Deī, ...”, instead of using the expected vocative form “Agne”. A distant traditional priest has advised that this is not really an example of a exception nor an irregularity in classical Latin, but instead, of a grammatical simplification (one might call it decay) that's typical of postclassical Latin. ]
A major type of inflection for verbs, which identifies its subject as being on 1 of 2 sides: either the giving side or the receiving side of the action signified by the verb. For Latin, there are only 2 voices:
Beware that the words distinguishing the sides are used loosely herein, without regard for what the meaning of the verbs indicates about the direction of benefit (e.g.: English “Cæsar taxed the Judæans” is in the active voice, despite him being, at least formally, the recipient to whom those taxes were rendered, and “the Judæans were taxed by Cæsar” is in the passive voice).


(No entries begin with ‘w’.)


× (times symbol)
Not really the lower-case letter ‘ x ’, but instead, the mathematical times symbol ‘ × ’ [#]. The latter is used herein to express the set of combinations of independently inflected grammatical characteristics, where ‘×’ connects the independent characteristics that're to be considered in combination. E.g., nouns are characterized, in part, by 2 numbers and usually 5 cases, so the expression “number × case” represents 10 combinations: singular number for 5 cases, plus plural number for the same 5 cases.

Thus far, this symbol is used herein only in the entries for
[Note #: The mathematical symbol should never be rendered with serifs. By contrast, the similar letter would be distinguished by its 4 serifs in the font that's specified in the style-sheet for this Web page, which would appear on the letter, e.g.: ‘ x ’). If the reader exercises the right to override the fonts in this Web-site's style-sheet to use a sans-serif font (e.g.: Arial or Helvetica), and doing so makes the mathematical symbol practically impossible to distinguish from the letter, don't complain to this webmaster.

Prevailing computer standards assign this mathematical symbol the numeric code 215. It's not within the 7-bit code set (i.e.: not within the numeric code range 0--127) of the American Standard Code for Information Interchange (ASCII) (A.D. 196__) = ISO 646, thus not within the identical Basic Latin code range, at U+0000--U+007F (0--127), within Unicode. However, it's within the ISO 8859-1 (Latin-1) 8-bit code set (i.e.: within the numeric code range 128--255) that's typically found on many computers, including some linux computers, built or reconditioned for the U.S. market; thus within the identical Latin-1 Supplement code range, at U+0080--U+00FF (128--255) within Unicode 3.0 (Oct. 1999) and successors. It's also within the compatible 3/4 of the extension by Microsoft of character codes from a 7-bit to an 8-bit code set, known as Windows-1252 (the incompatible code range is U+0080--U+009F (128--159)). ]

y | z

(No entries begin with ‘x’ | ‘y’ | ‘z’.)

Beware: This page bears no Nihil obstat; it bears no Imprimatur.

The author of this page is neither a priest nor a member of any religious order. He was baptized a Roman Catholic during the reign of Pope Pius XII, in the same decade in which the council known as Vatican II was summoned, and was confirmed a Roman Catholic a few years before that council concluded its deliberations. He's had formal training in Latin, and can plod his way through some Greek. The author accepts, for the nonce [<ME: “the/n ones” ←“then ones” (dat.) = “(for) the once”], that except for his words themselves, readers have little else by which to judge him.

Mindful of the strong emotions sometimes evoked by the world-wide struggle to defend traditional Roman Catholicism, the author will endeavor to keep this page free of controversy that would be divisive among the traditional Catholic faithful. Nonetheless, it may be helpful to Catholics preserving the 19 centuries of Catholic tradition in their faith, to identify & illuminate some of the entities, issues, and terminology that may be encountered around other Catholics and nonCatholics.

In general, the author has strived to avoid issues of faith best referred to a fully traditional priest or to fully traditional publications that do bear a Nihil obstat; and an Imprimatur. He's focused instead on historical, linguistic, and lexicographic matters.

Copyright © 2011--2014 C. Phipps. All rights reserved.
(Web page created 2011-01-29; last modified 2014-12-11) [‘0d’].