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Subject:Latin composition
Time:04:38 pm
As part of my aforementioned summer independent study of Latin, I'm doing some composition. If anyone wants to try their hand at it, too, post your translation of the following English sentences. Or, for an easier task, just tell me what is lacking in my translations. :) Warning: they're all about Caesar.

The sentences
1) With his friends brought together, Caesar sets out to support the candidacy of Antony.
2) Hirtius wrote the Gallic War, although Caesar won all the battles.
3) When these events were heard of, Caesar spoke to the citizens of Rome.
4) Although his father disapproved, the younger son decided to become one of Pompey's soldiers.
5) Since many citizens had gathered in the forum, the consul began to make a speech.
6) By waging war in Gaul Caesar increased his reputation.
7) Caesar left Gaul in order to conduct elections in Rome.
8) The ancient writers tell us that Caesar was a man greatly to be admired and greatly to be feared.
9) Since numerous reports had to be read by Curio, Caesar dispatched messengers to Rome that very day.
10) Certain friends of Caesar were at hand to defend his position.
11) There was no doubt about the loyalty of any friend.
12) Caesar took away one legion from one general, another from a second general.

My translations
1) Amici collatis, Caesar petitionem Antoni alere proficiscitur.
2) Hirtius Bellum Gallicum scripsit, Caesare proelia vincento.
3) Illis eventibus auditis, Caesar civibus Romae locutus est.
4) Patre reprehendento, minor filius militem Pompeiorum factus esse decrevit.
5) Multis civibus congregatis in foro, consul sermonem coepit.
6) Bello gerendo Caesar famam aluit.
7) Caesar ad electiones ducendas Romae Gallo discessit.
8) Auctores antiquui nos dicunt Caesarem fuisse magis diligendum timendumque.
9) Cum multae narrationes Curioni legendae fuissent, ipso die Caesar nuntios Romam misit.
10) Quidam amici Caesaris ad manum erant ut statum defenderent (or ad statum defendendum).
11) Dubitatio de fiducia ullius amici non erat.
12) Caesar legionem ab duce, alterum ab secundo dulce sustulit.
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loxian
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 09:15 pm (UTC)
I'm sleepy + I haven't tried anything like this for twelve years, but... Would 'friends gathered together' translate nicely with an ablative absolute? Also, the doubt about the loyalty is in the present tense, and I'm not sure about what the ancient authors are actually saying about caesar. I am very impressed that anybody is spending their summer doing latin prose composition. It used to make me cry (so I probably shouldn't be trying to help). Good luck.
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chrysologus400
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 09:25 pm (UTC)
"I'm not sure about what the ancient authors are actually saying about caesar."

I'm not sure that I understand the problem. They say that he was greatly to be esteemed and feared. It's supposed to be passive periphrastic.
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chrysologus400
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 09:26 pm (UTC)
"I am very impressed that anybody is spending their summer doing latin prose composition."

Thanks! I gotta know my Latin so I can make the big bucks someday.
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loxian
Subject:Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 11:10 pm (UTC)
Oops, I'm sorry, I just read your translations again - I read 'nos' as 'non'! Now I understand what the ancient authors are saying. I have also read your previous post and promise not to bang on about ablative absolutes any more, because you've already heard all about that. And you've fixed the tense thing in the edit. (Unless I dreamt that too...) So now I am out of advice; but tell me, how do you get the big bucks? I missed something.
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ukelele
Subject:Re: Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 11:25 pm (UTC)
I parlayed my knowledge of Latin into actual employment! ...teaching private school...where come to think of it the bucks were exactly the same size as anyone else's...in fact, the bucks were of *zero* size as they were all direct deposited...also there were not very many of them...

Dammit.

I, uh, hear classicists get into law and med school a lot?
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loxian
Subject:Re: Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 11:34 pm (UTC)
Of my classicist friends at college, there's a comedian, a tv editor, a management consultant, one lost in America somewhere and two solicitors. And me, a nurse. Oh, and the least academic of us all, who is teaching 'classical civilization' in a very small private school for children who need to learn in a 'more relaxed environment'. So there's some money, I suppose, but not directly from the Latin.
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lysimache
Subject:Re: Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 11:35 pm (UTC)
I hear tell that the CIA is interested too...
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loxian
Subject:Re: Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 11:43 pm (UTC)
I was told that too (well, MI5/6 -British equivalent, I think?). But I was very briefly far too left wing, before I lapsed into apathy, and am thus blacklisted. Maybe that's not a problem in US?
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lysimache
Subject:Re: Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 11:47 pm (UTC)
They do (as I understand) all kinds of background checking here for the FBI/CIA/shadowy gov't agencies unknown to the public -- interview friends, family, neighbors, teachers from 20 years ago -- and *lots* of stuff disqualifies you, including *any* hint of previous anti-government stances.

(I believe being gay is *also* disqualifying here, even for non-military things, even now, so I'm personally not counting on it as a career path should I tire of the teaching gig.)
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loxian
Subject:Re: Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 12:12 am (UTC)
Really?! God, government recruiters would have had a hard time finding anybody 'suitable' in my year, then. Teaching sounds much better and more interesting than being a civil servant anyway.
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chrysologus400
Subject:Re: Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 12:58 am (UTC)
I'm not actually a classicist. I'm a theologian.
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chrysologus400
Subject:Re: Told you I was tired...
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 12:58 am (UTC)
You didn't imagine it -- "non" was a typo that I changed when I changed "est" to "erat."

I'm getting a Ph.D. in Historical Theology at CUA with an emphasis in patristics. Hopefully that will turn into some big bucks in a few years.
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ukelele
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-08 11:42 pm (UTC)
"Caesare proelia vincento"....hm..."vincento" looks like it's trying to be a present active participle (I say "trying" because the PAP uses 3rd declension endings), but that would be, like, Hirtius wrote it *while* Caesar was winning the battles. A perfect participle would get the sense of the order of things across better, though of course perfect participles only come in passive, so you'd have to switch things up (literal English would then be "although the battles were won by Caesar", hint hint ;).

I'd prefer "civibus Romanis" to "civibus Romae", though come to think of it I don't know if "civibus Romae" is actually wrong. Maybe I just like "Romanis" better. Also, "these" is not "those".

Reprehendento -- again, present participles are 3rd declension.

"Pompeiorum" -- this would be "of the Pompeys", but there is only one Pompey in operation. You can use his name in the genitive singular, or you can use the adjective "Pompeianus, -a, -um" (agreeing of course with militem).

"Multis civibus congregatis in foro" -- though again I am not sure if this is *wrong* rather than a matter of style, I strongly prefer that "in foro" go before "congregatis", and I think in fact you will generally find that ablative absolutes begin with their noun and end with their participle, with necessary prep phrases and the like going in between and the participle tying it up like a neat little bow and signposting that the abl. abs. has ended. ("multis" is fine where it is as it's really part of a unit with "civibus", the two words together being a subunit of the entire abl. abs. phrase.)"Bello gerendo" -- oh dear, my gerunds and gerundives are weak, but I believe the gerundive is the future passive participle; by saying "bello gerendo" you suggest to me that you are using the gerundive, not the gerund, as "gerendo" agrees with "bello" -- so this would mean something like "by means of the war about to be fought", which unfortunately makes no sense. Indeed, you are not saying that anything in this sentence happens by means of the *war*, but rather by means of *the waging of* it, which means that you need the waging to be a noun, not an adjective -- which is to say you need the gerund, not the gerundive -- and the gerund, being a verbal noun, would not *agree with* bello, but rather take it as its direct object -- hence, "bellum gerendo". Did that make any damn sense? Gerunds and gerundives are hard.

Does "Gallo" need a preposition? Seriously, I don't know -- I'd have to look up "discedo" and see if one simply discedoes a place, or discedoes ab or ex it. But it feels weird.

"Antiquui" -- much as "antiquus" charms us by having two "u"s, it does not get to keep them in all its forms; -us is an ending; the stem is antiqu-.

"nos dicunt" also feels wrong to me. "nobis dicunt"? They are not telling *us* in the manner that one might tell a story (indeed, that would make no sense); they are telling something *to* us, really. But I'd want to look that one up.

"magis" is "more", not so much "greatly". Perhaps "maxime" or "valde"?

Curioni -- ablative of agent is ab + person, not person alone (the ablative alone is ablative means and applies only to things).

"ab secundo dulce" is very sweet, but not what you meant ;). (Also, "ab" becomes "a" before consonants.)

All that said (<--ablative absolute!) you may feel quite disheartened, but don't; I read the Latin before I read the English in most cases and I usually understood what you were saying, more or less, which means that you are doing a good job with the most important facet of a language -- communication; if you can get that down the grammatical niceties will follow in time.
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lysimache
Subject:Ablative absolutes <3 ! :)
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 03:12 am (UTC)
Some add'l comments to follow up on what ukelele has said. :)

1. "to support the candidacy of Antony" is a purpose clause. You need to use ut+sbj. (Or ad + gerundive, but that gets complicated. Or possibly you could have a supine.) Anyway, not an infinitive.

3. I'm not a fan of eventibus (I'd prefer rebus). And, actually, I'd prefer something like cognitis to auditis! But, uh, yeah, other than illis, it's fine.

4. You want fieri, the present infinitive (same time as main verb). Also, after a verb like esse, including forms of fio/factus sum, the predicate complement remains in the nominative (miles). Perhaps minor natu to be as clear as possible. Also, I strongly second Pompeianus here.

5. sermo is not the usual word for "speech;" oratio would be better.

6. bello gerendo is okay, actually, afaik, because you can use the gerundive agreeing with the noun (illogical as that might be). bellum gerendo is also possible. I quite dislike aluit for "increased" of a reputation, since it feels to metaphorical for me, and the Romans almost never use a metaphor silently (i.e., without a word like quasi). I'd suggest auxit.

7. Gallo does, in fact, need a preposition. Besides which, it's Gallia -ae f., 1st decl. ex Gallia is what you're looking for. I think the placement of Romae would make more sense it if were included in the gerundive prhase, so that it doesn't appear to be modifying the main verb.

8. Definitely nobis and not nos.

9. Since you're using a passive periphrastic, the agent is indeed expressed with the dative alone and not an ablative of agent. (The construction is called the 'dative of agent'.) You could dump this all into an ablative absolute if you wanted, instead of a cum-clause (although cum clauses are fine!), in which case you do actually use an ablative of agent, to avoid the confusion! However, if you do use a cum-clause, you want the imperfect subjunctive (essent), and not pluperfect: same time as the main verb.

10. How about non erat dubitandum, for a nice passive periphrastic?

11. I'd actually want to do this with alius ... alius, much more compressed than in English. Caesar aliam legionem alii legato detraxit. (Dative of separation).

Very nice job overall! :)
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ukelele
Subject:Re: Ablative absolutes <3 ! :)
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 08:47 am (UTC)
*headslap* Gallia, not Gallus. Duh. Man has my prose comp gotten rusty. Maybe Bradley's Arnold and I need to spend some more quality time.
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chrysologus400
Subject:Per opem vestram
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 11:17 pm (UTC)
1) Amici collatis, Caesar proficiscitur ut petitionem Antoni alat.
2) Hirtius Bellum Gallicum scripsit, Caesari proelia victa.
3) His eventibus auditis, Caesar civibus Romae locutus est.
4) Patre reprehendente, minor filius miles Pompeianus fieri decrevit.
5) Multis civibus in foro congregatis, consul orationem coepit.
7) Caesar ad Romae electiones ducendas ab Gallia discessit.
8) Auctores antiqui nobis dicunt Caesarem fuisse maxime diligendum timendumque.
9) Cum multae narrationes Curioni legendae essent, ipso die Caesar nuntios Romam misit.
12) Caesar aliam legionem ab alio duce sustulit. (Any particular reason you changed dux to legatus? My dictionary indicates that imperator or dux more closely aligns with "general" than legatus.)
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chrysologus400
Subject:Re: Per opem vestram
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 11:18 pm (UTC)
Alas, I forgot to close the bold HTML tag after "maxime"...
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chrysologus400
Subject:Re: Ablative absolutes <3 ! :)
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 11:19 pm (UTC)
See the comment I left in response to lysimache to see the changes I made based on your helpful suggestions!

Also, isn't "Curioni" the dative of "Curio"? I was trying to use a dative of agent!
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chiasmus
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 01:23 am (UTC)
Just for the ones where you mention Gaul the place, it should be Gallia, -ae, so in 6 you would need an "in Gallia" for example. It also needs the prepositions, I think.
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zamis
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 05:42 am (UTC)
Those sentences look mighty familiar. Are you working through Finis Rei Publicae, perhaps? (We're using it in our Republican prose class this summer :0)
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chrysologus400
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-07-09 02:14 pm (UTC)
Yes.
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