Page:Latin for beginners (1911).djvu/211

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GENITIVE AND ABLATIVE OF QUALITY 187


In Latin the expression of quality or description is very similar. The prepositions of and with suggest the genitive and the ablative respectively, and we translate the sentences above ( I ) Vir magnae virtutis, or (2) Vir magna virtute (3) Silva altarum arbonim, or (4) Silva altis arboribua There is, however, one important difference between the Latin and the English. In English we may say, for example, a man of courage^ using the descriptive phrase without an adjective modifier. In Latin, however, an adjective modifier must ahvays be used, as above. a. Latin makes a distinction between the use of the two cases in that numerical descriptions of measure are in the genitive and descriptions of physical characteristics are in the ablative. Other descriptive phrases may be in either case. . EXAMPLES . Fossa duodecim pedum, a ditch of twelve feet. . Hom5 magnis pedibus et parv5 capite, a man with big feet and a small head. . RSx erat vir summa audacia or rex erat yir summae audaciae, the king was a man of the greatest boldness. . Rule. Genitive of Description. Numerical descriptions of measure are expressed by the genitive with a modifying adjective. . Rule. Ablative of Description. Descriptions of physical characteristics are expressed by the ablative with a modifying adjective. . Rule. Genitive or Ablative of Description. Descriptions involving neither numerical statements nor physical character- istics may be expressed by either the genitive or the ablative with a modifying adjective. . IDIOMS Helvetiis in animd Mt, the Helvetii intend (lit. // is in mind to the Hehetians) in matrimSnium dare, to give in marriage nihil posse, to have no power fossam perduoere, to construct a ditch (lit to lead a ditch through)