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Chapter 14

RULE 1: I-stem third-declension nouns:

(1) are "parisyllabic";
(2) have a monosyllabic nominative singular ending in -s/x and two consonants at the end of the base;
(3) or, are neuters ending in -e, -al or -ar.

RULE 2: The sum difference between i-stem and regular third-declension nouns is an extra -i- in certain cases:

1) in the genitive plural of all i-stems (-ium);
2) or, in the genitive plural (-ium), the ablative singular (-i) and nominative/accusative plural (-ia) of neuter i-stems.

RULE 3: Things to note about ablatives:

1) the ablative of means uses no preposition;
2) the ablative of manner uses the preposition cum, except when an adjective is attached to the object, in which case the preposition cum is optional;
3) and the ablative of accompaniment uses the preposition cum and normally has a person as its object.

I. Grammar

Wheelock has paced this book well. The next three chapters cover important but not enormously difficult new ideas: i-stem nouns, basic uses of the ablative, the imperfect tense, and third-declension adjectives. This provides time for recapitulation and review.

The rules cited above (Rules 1 and 2) sum up the few essential differences between i-stem and regular third-declension forms. For masculine and feminine i-stems the only form different from regular third-declension is the genitive plural which has an extra -i- (-ium). Neuter i-stems have that form, too, along with an extra -i- in the nominative/accusative plural (-ia) and substitute -i for -e in the ablative singular.

A. I-Stem Nouns

Third declension i-stem nouns fall into three general categories: "parisyllabics," "monosyllabics with nominative singulars ending in -s/x and bases ending in two consonants," and neuters ending in -e, -al, or -ar:

Regular Third-Declension


> Genitive Plural

ratio, rationis, f.
civis, civis, m/f
> civium
labor, laboris, m.
ignis, ignis, m.
> ignium
virtus, virtutis, f.
hostis, hostis, m
> hostium

dux, ducis, m.
ars, artis, f.
> artium
pax, pacis, f.
mens, mentis, f.
> mentium
*ops, opis, f.
dens, dentis, m.
> dentium

corpus, corporis, n.
mare, maris, n.
> mari, maria, marium
nomen, nominis, n.
animal, animalis, n.
> animali, animalia, animalium
caput, capitis, n.
exemplar, exemplaris, n.
> exemplari, exemplaria, exemplarium

B. Uses of the Ablative

Rule 3 above encapsulates the Ablatives of Means, Manner and Accompaniment . Note that the meaning of the noun often limits what use of the ablative can be applied. For instance, abstract nouns (e.g. speed, clarity, easiness) are often ablatives of manner; instruments and concrete things tend to be show up as ablatives of means; and people or animate beings often serve as ablatives of accompaniment.

II. Vocabulary

pars: It often has a sense of "some" and is followed by a partitive genitive; see sentence 7 of P&R below.

vis: Note that vis changes base in the plural, v(i)- > vir-, and it retains an old accusative form vim. Be sure not to confuse vires ("forces, strength") and viri ("men").

gero: The basic meaning of the verb is "to make something go, to run something." Its exact meaning must be derived from context and is often shaped by the particular direct object used with it (e.g. bellum gerere, "to wage war"; se gerere, "to conduct oneself, to behave"); cf. Eng. do in all its many uses and misuses: "do one's business," "do a job," "do time," "do a meeting," "do your hair".

teneo: This verb has a more literal sense ("to grasp") than habere ("to have") which entails a more figurative sense.

trans: Takes an accusative object.

curro: Cucurri is a reduplicated perfect (see Chapter 12).

III. Sentences

Practice and Review

3. Although neuter plural to agree with vitia, sua is translated "his/her own."

4. Viribus is not "men"!

6. "Americanarum"? The name America appears first in 1507 as an alternative to the name Amerige in Cosmographiae Introductio . . . Insuper quattuor Americi Vespucii nauigationes. Americus Vesputius is the Latin form of the Italian name, Amerigo Vespucci.

8. Here, "long" = "for a long time."


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