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Latin Grammar I, Lesson 05. Of Adjective Nouns

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The title of this lesson is, “Various Kinds of Adjectives”.  If you have learned about adjectives in English Grammar, you must understand that the term adjectives here does not have the same meaning.  In English Grammar, “adjective” is used for an adjective noun, which names some quality of a substantive noun, as warm water, tall tree, etc..  In Latin Grammar, “adjective” is used for not only “adjective nouns” but also pronouns.  So, in this lesson, we study the various kinds of adjectives and pronouns we will encounter in Latin.

Part 1.  Interrogative Adjectives

1. Nomen lnterrogativum est quo de re aliqua quaerimus, ut: quis? uter? quantus?
An Interrogative noun is that by which we ask about anything, as, Quis? Who? Uter? Which? Quantus? How much?.

2. lnterrogativum Substantiae est cui respondemus per nomen substantivum vel per pronomen demonstrativum, ut: quis?, quae?, quod?;  uter?, utra?, utrum?.
An Interrogative of Substance is that to which we respond with a substantive noun or demonstrative pronoun, as Quis? Quae? Quod? Who? or What?; Uter? Utra? Utrum? Which?; as,

Q.  Quis hic loquitur?  Who is speaking here?
A.  Davus (substantive) hic loquitur.  David is speaking here.
A.  Ille (demonstrative) hic loquitur.  That (man) is speaking here.

3. lnterrogativum Accidentis est cui respondemus per nomen adjectivum, ut: quantus?, qualis?, quot?, quotus?, cujus? cuja? cujum?; cujas?.
An Interrogative of Accident is that to which we respond with an adjective noun, as Quantus?  How much?  Qualis? What kind?  Quot? How many?  Quotus? Which in order?  Cujus, Cuja, Cujum? Whose? Cujas?, Whose?; as:

Q.  Qualis fuit Hector?  What kind (of man) was Hector?
A.  Hector fortis fuit.  Hector was a strong (man)
A.  Hector magnanimus fuit.  Hector was a great-hearted (man).

To interrogatives of accident we respond as follows:

Q. Quantus?  How much?
A.  Magnus. Great.  Parvus. Little.  Longus.  Long.  Brevis.  Short. , etc.
Q.  Qualis?  What kind?
A.  Bonus.  Good.  Malus.  Evil. Doctus.  Learned.  Imperitus.  Inexperienced., etc..
Q.  Quot?  How many?
A.  Unus.  One.  Duo.  Two.  Tres. Three. , etc.
Q.  Quotus?  Which in order?
A.  Primus.  First.  Secundus.  Second.  Tertius. Third. , etc.
Q.  Cuja vestis?  Whose clothing (is this)?
A.  Mea.  Mine.  Tua. Yours. , etc., vel Caesaris Ceasar’s, Laelii Laelius’s , etc..
Q.  Cujas es?   Whence are you?
A.  Italus.  Of Italy.  Romanus.  Of Rome.  Stoicus. Of the Stoic (school).

We will pass over the interrogatives quoteniquotuplusquotuplex and quotennis because they are not in frequent use.

Likewise, generally speaking, the interrogative cujus, cuja, cujum Whose? for which you may more preferably use cujus, the genitive case of the pronoun qui; even though Vergil used Cujum pecus? and Cicero also used Cuja res sit, cujum periculum.  

Part II. Relative Adjectives

4. Relativum est quod nomen antecedens in memoriam reducit: id duplex est, substantiae et accidentis.
Relative is that which reduces an antecedent noun to memory.  There are two kinds of relatives nouns:  relatives of substance and of accident.

5. Relativum Substantiae est quod nomen substantivum in memoriam reducit, ut: qui quae quod.
Relative of substance is that which reduces a substantive noun to memory, as qui, quae, quod who, what.

Legi Ciceronem, qui fuit eloquentissimus Romanorum.
I have read Cicero, who was the most eloquent of the Romans.

6.  Relativum Accidentis est quod in memoriam revocat nomen adjectivum, ut qualisquantusquot.
Relative of accident is that which reduces to memory an adjective noun, as qualis  what kindquantus how much and quot how many.

Cicero fuit eloquens, qualis fuit Hortensius.
Cicero was an eloquent (man), of what kind was Hortensius.

Part III.  Redditive & Infinite Adjectives

7.  Reddita sunt tantus, talis, tot, totidem, quae relativis quantus, qualis, quot ante vel post redduntur.
The Redditive nouns are tantus so much, talis such kindtot so many totidem just so many, which answer to the relatives quantusqualisquot going before or after, as,

Quales in republica principes sunt, tales reliqui solent esse cives.
Of what kind in a republic the princes are, of such kind are the remaining are accustomed to be citizens.
Talis sis, qualis haberi cupis.
Of such kind should you be, what kind to be thought of you desire .
Quot homines, tot sententiae.
How many men, so many opinions.
Totidem ad te epistolas dedi, quot tu ad me misisti.
So many to you letters I have given, how many you to me have sent. 

8. Quis vel qui quae quoduter utra utrumquantusqualis et cetera interrogativa, quando ponuntur post verba audio, videoscio, intelligonescio, et alia ejusdem significationis appellantur “infinita”.
The pronouns quis or quiquaequoduterutrautrumquantusqualis and the other interrogatives when they are placed after the verbs audio I hear, video I see, scio I know, intelligo I understand, nescio I don’t know, and others with the same meaning, are called infinites; as,

Nescio quis sit.
I don’t know who he may be.
Audio quid dicis.
I hear what you say.
Ignoro quantus aut qualis sis.
I do not know of what size or of what kind you may be.

They are infinite nouns, which do not signify any certain person, but are able to be adapted to whichever you please.  The pronoun quisquaequod also with the particle sinisi and ne is called infinite, as si quis, nisi quis, ne quis for si aliquisnisi aliquis, ne aliquis; si qua for si aliqua; si quid for si aliquid, etc.   Quis and quid are never relatives, but are either interrogatives or infinites.

Part IV.  Possessive, Patrial & Gentile Nouns

9. Nomen Possessivum est quod aut rem possessam, aut ad aliquem pertinentem, significat.
Possessive noun is that which signifies either a thing possessed or that pertains to another.

Equus regius  (A) horse royal.
Miles Pompeianus  (A) soldier Pompeian.

10. Nomen Patrium est quod patriam indicat.
Patrial noun is that which indicates one’s country, as Romanus an inhabitant of Rome; Atheniensis an Athenian.

11. Nomen Gentile est quod gentem vel nationem indicat.
Gentile noun is that which indicates a people or nation, as Italus an Italian; Graecus a Greek.

Part V.  Partitive Nouns

12.  Nomen Partitivum est quod aut unum ex multis significat, aut multa singillatim.
A Partitive noun is that which names either one out of many, called Particulars; or many singularly, called Universals.

13.  Unum ex multis significant aliusaliquisalteralteruterquisquidamquilibetquivisquispiamquisquamsolusunus, (idest solus),
ullusuterutercumqueuterlibetutervis; quae etiam “Particularia” vocantur.
One out of many signify one out of many, as alius (another), aliquis (someone), alter (another), alteruter (one of two), quis (anyone), quidam (someone), quilibet (anyone), quivis (anyone), quispiam (anyone), quisquam (anyone), solus (alone), unus (alone), ullus (any), uter (whichever), utercumque (whichever), uterlibet (either one), utervis (either); which also are called “particulars”.

Understand that these adjective nouns have a range of meanings.  What is most helpful is to understand the meaning of the class to which they belong.

14.  Multa singillatim significant complurespleriqueneuteruterque, et quae dicuntur “universalia”, ut cunctiomnesquicumquequisquisquisqueunusquisquenemonullus.
Universals signify many singularly, complurespleriqueneuteruterque,  cunctiomnesquicumquequisquisquisqueunusquisque,  nemonullus.

Part VI.  Numeral Nouns

15. Nomen Numerale est quod numerum significat, cujus tres sunt species: cardinale, ordinale, distributivum.
Numeral noun is that which signifies a number, of which there are three species:  CardinalsOrdinals and Distributives.

16.  Cardinale est quod numerum absolute et sine ordine significat.
Cardinal noun is that which signifies a number absolutely and without any order, as unus one, duo two, tres three.  A cardinal numeral answers to the question, “Quot?” (How many?).

17.  Ordinale nomen est quod numerum ordine digestum significat aut ultimum ex eo numero.
An Ordinal noun is that which signifies a number arranged in order, or the last of that number, as  primus first, secundus or alter, second; tertius, third; quartus, fourth, etc..  An ordinal numeral answers to the question, “Quotus?” (In what place/order?).

18. Distributiva sive divisiva nomina sunt, quae distributionem seu divisionem significant; quibus fere utuntur oratores numero multitudinis.
Distributive numeral noun is that which signifies distribution or division, which orators usually use in the plural number, as singuli one by one; bini by twos; terni, by threes.  For example,

Pueri redite domum bini aut terni, ad summum quaterni.
The children returned to their house by two, by three, at the most by four.

19.  Non abs re fuerit hoc loco seriem cardinalium, ordinalium ac distributivorum numerorum subtexere, quo tironibus, cum opus fuerit, ad manus sint.
For the sake of reference in this place, the list of cardinal, ordinal and distributive numbers shall be attached so that students may have them at hand, when necessary.

The Cardinal numbers are unusunaunum, one; duoduaeduo, two; hi and hae tres and haec tria (of the third declension), three;  after which none are declined until centum:  quatuor, four; quinque, five; sex, six; septem, seven; octo, eight; novem, nine; decem, ten; undecim, eleven; duodecim, twelve; tredecim, thirteen; quatuordecim, fourteen; quindecim, fifteen; sedecim or sexdecim, sixteen; septemdecim, seventeen; decem et octo or duodeviginti, eighteen; novemdecim or undeviginti, nineteen; so hereafter for the other tens: duodetriginta, twenty-eight; undetriginta, twenty-nine; duodequadraginta, thirty-eight; undequadraginta, thirty-nine, etc.;  viginti, twenty; vigintiunus or unus et viginti, twenty-one; vigintiduo or duo et viginti, twenty-two, etc. triginta, thirty; quadraginta, forty; quinquaginta, fifty; sexaginta, sixty; septuaginta, seventy; octaginta, eighty; nonaginta, ninety; centum, one hundred;  centum unus, one hundred and one; centum duo or duo et centum, one hundred and two, etc. centum nonaginta novem, one hundred ninety-nine; bis centum, two hundred;  tercentum, three hundred, etc.  Or, declining hereafter: ducentiducentae, ducenta, two hundred;  trecentitercentaetercenta, likewise quadringentiquingentisexcenti,  septingentioctingentinoningenti or nongentimille.

20.  The noun mille, one thousand, if it is of plural number, is an indeclinable adjective of the common-of-three gender: mille milites, one thousand soldiers; mille militum of one thousand soldiers;  mille militibus, by one thousand soldiers; likewise,  mille oves, a thousand sheep; mille ovibus, in one thousand sheep; mille mancipia, one thousand slaves; mille mancipiis, by one thousand slaves.

If, however, it be of singular number, it is a substantive of the neuter gender, indeclinable in the singular and is joined with the genitive case in the manner of substantives, as

Mille militum interfectum est.
A thousand of soldiers has been killed.

In the plural, however, it is declined, milliamilliummillibus, as

Duo, tria, quatuor millia militum capta sunt.
Two, three, four thousands of soldiers have been captured.

We say, therefore, undeclined, bis mille milites, twice one thousand soldiers, or (declined) duo millia militum, two thousands of soldiers.  Likewise, ter mille, three times one thousand or tria millia, three thousands; quater mille, four times one thousand, or quatuor millia, four thousands; decem millia, ten thousands, or decies mille, ten times one thousand; centum millia, one hundred thousands, or centies mille, one hundred times one thousand; ducenta millia, two hundred thousands; trecenta millia, three hundred thousandsdecies centena millia, ten times one hundred thousands (one million); undecies centena millia, eleven times one hundred thousands, that is, one million and one hundred thousand;  vicies centena millia, twenty times one hundred thousands, two million. tricies centena millia, thirty times one hundred thousands, three million; millies centena millia, one thousand times one hundred thousands, one hundred million.  Avoid saying duo centum or duo mille because it is improper to join two adjectives.

21.  The Ordinal Numbers are:  primus, first; secundus or alter, second; tertius, third; quartus, fourth; quintus, fifth; sextus, sixth; septimus, seventh; octavus, eighth; nonus, ninth; decimus, tenth; undecimus, eleventh; duodecimus, twelfth; decimustertius or tertiusdecimus, thirteenth; decimusquartus or quartusdecimus, fourteenth; quintusdecimus, fifteenth; sextusdecimus, sixteenth. septimusdecimus, seventeenth; octavusdecimus or duodevicesimus, eighteenth; nonusdecimus or undevicesimus, nineteenth;  Likewise also duodetricesimus, twenty-eighth; undetricesimus, twenty-ninth; duodequadragesimus, thirty-eighth;  undequadragesimus, thirty-ninth, etc.  vigesimus or, more correctly, vicesimus, twentieth; vicesimusprimus or primus et vicesimus, twenty-first;  likewise hereafter, trigesimus or more correctly, tricesimus, thirtieth; quadragesimus, fortieth; quinquagesimus, fiftieth; sexagesimus, sixtieth; septuagesimus, seventieth; octogesimus, eightieth nonagesimus, ninetieth; centesimus, one hundredth; centesimusprimus or primus et centesimus, one hundred first; etc. ducentesimus, two hundredth; trecentesimus, three hundredth; quadringentesimus, four hundredth; quingentesimus, five hundredth; sexcentesimus, six hundredth; septingentesimus, seven hundedth; octingentesimus, eight hundredth; nongentesimus or noningentesimus, nine hundredth; millesimus, one thousandth; millesimusprimus or primus et millesimus, one thousand and first; bis millesimus, two thousandth; ter millesimus, three thousandth; centies millesimus, one hundred thousandth; etc.

22.  The Distributive numbers, which we use chiefly when we divide the same thing equally into more, and whatever we join to those nouns, which are lacking forms in the singular are, singulisingulaesingula, one by one; binibinaebina, two by two; likewise, terniquaterniquini,  seniseptenioctoni,  novenideniundeniduodeniternideniquaternideniquinideni (or, by contraction, terdeniquaterdeniquindeni); senideniseptenidenioctonideni or duodeviceninovenideni or undeviceni; likewise, duodetriceni, undetriceni; duodequadrageni, undequadrageni, etc. viceniviceni singuli or singuli et viceniviceni bini or bini et viceniviceni terni, etc.  triceniquadrageniquinquagenisexageniseptuagenioctogeninonagenicenteni,  centeni singulicenteni bini, etc. ducentenitrecenteniquadringenteni,  quingenteni,  sexcenteniseptingentenioctingenteninongenteni.  We also say, by contraction, ducenitreceniquadringeniquingenisexceniseptingenioctingeninongeni.  milleni, bis milleni, ter milleni, and likewise hereafter.

23. Since we usually use the names of Adverbs of Number instead of the names of cardinal or ordinal or distributive numbers, we include them here, though they will be studied in greater detail when we study adverbs.  Adverbs are easier to use because they are not declined, and have only one form.

Adverbs of Cardinal Numbers are these:  semelbis,  terquaterquinquiessexiesseptiesoctiesnoviesdeciesundeciesduodeciestredeciesquatuordeciesquindeciessexdeciesseptiesdecies or deciesseptiesoctiesdecies or deciesocties or duodeviciesnoviesdecies or deciesnovies or undevicies, likewise also duodetriciesundetriciesduodequadragiesundequadragies, etc.  Vicies by contraction for vigintiesvicies semel or semel et viciesbis et vicies, etc.;  triciesquadragiesquinquagiessexagiesseptuagiesoctogiesnonagiescenties semel or semel et centies, etc. ducentiestrecentiesquadringenties,  quingentiessexcentiesseptingentiesoctingentiesnongentiesmilliesbis milliester milliescenties milliesmillies millies, or better, decies centies milliesvicies centies millies.

24.  Adverbs of the Ordinal Numbers are: primosecundo or iterumtertioquarto, and others formed from the ablative case of the ordinal numbers.

Lesson Videos

To assist you in your study of Latin Adjective Nouns, Mr. Michael has prepared this video series.  Watching is highly recommended, but not required.  Click here to watch now.