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Third-declension adjectives are formed in accordance with the rules for
i-stem nouns, with one important exception: whereas -e
is used as the ablative singular ending for masculine/feminine i-stem
nouns, the ablative singular of all genders in third-declension
adjectives is -î. Here is a worksheet
to practice the formation and use of third-declension adjectives, in particular,
their agreement with first/second declension nouns.
celer: Does not contract!
difficilis: As the negative of facilis (dis- + facilis), difficilis shows the same sort of vowel gradation seen in facio when it goes into compound (facio > afficio).
iuvo: One of the very few first-conjugation verbs with irregular forms (perfect = iûvi; perfect passive participle = iûtum). In no particular form are the present and perfect tenses exactly identical, although sometimes their differences can be quite subtle: iuvat vs. iûvit. Therefore, the long û in the perfect stem cannot be deemed absolutely mandatory, but it's a good idea to make note of it anyway. This accords with other verbs which lengthen the root vowel to form the perfect (linquo > lîqui, video > vîdi, lego > lêgi); see above, Chapter 12. Note the English derivatives, adjuvant and adjutant, both referring to an assistant of some sort.
femina: Meaning literally "she who nurses or gives suck," femina builds on the base fe-, also seen in filius, fetus ( literally "the thing suckled," cf. English suckling) and fecundus ("abounding in suckling"; later, "rich in productivity").
Practice and Review
4. It is a common pattern in Latin that, when a noun does double duty serving as the subject of both the main sentence and a subordinate clause, it is placed at the front of the sentence, rendering a common syntactic pattern in Latin going something like this: "Cicero, when he left, he went to Greece." This is best rendered in English as "When Cicero left, he went to Greece."
6. Caelum is best taken as "air" here.
10. Themistocles, no doubt, hated his fellow citizens because he was
ostracized, a fate not undeserved since he had ostracized so many of his
political opponents including, among others, Aristides the Just.
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