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Latin for Duolingo: Corpus Humanum, Lesson 1

Salvete omnes! Welcome back to Latin for Duolingo. This is an ongoing, unofficial course in Latin; if you would like to catch up with previous lessons, you can find a directory, a classified vocabulary list, and Memrise courses at these links:

For nearly six months, we have been working on Latin verbs: the three tenses of the present system (present, imperfect, future), and infinitives and imperatives. We’re still not done, and soon we’ll be diving back into verbs with the perfect tense. But I feel a break is in order. Let’s learn the names for the parts of the human body in Latin. It’s a fairly basic vocabulary-building lesson and we already know some of the words.

capillus, i = hair
digitus, i = finger, toe
nasus, i = nose
oculus, i = eye
bracchium, i (brachium) = arm
auris, auris (f.) = ear
pes, pedis (m.) = foot
caput, capitis (n.) = head
corpus, corporis (n.) = body
crus, cruris (n.) = leg (lower leg)
os, oris (n.) = mouth
manus, us (f.) = hand, power
facies, faciei (f.) (also vultus, vultus, m.) = face, form, shape, appearance
doleo, dolēre, dolui, dolitus, 2 = feel pain, hurt, suffer

New Sentences
Homo unum caput, duos oculos, duas manus habet. (Unum caput, duo oculi, duae manus homini sunt.) = A human has one head, two eyes, two hands.
In facie sunt duo oculi, unus nasus, et unum os. = On the face there are two eyes, one nose, and one mouth.
In unā manu sunt quinque digiti. = On one hand there are five fingers.
Noli aperire os! = Don’t open your mouth!
Nonne oculos in capite tuo habes? = Don’t you have eyes in your head?
Ex ore tuo ad aures meas. = From your mouth to my ears.
Aures tuae rubrae sunt. = Your ears are red.
Crus meum (mihi) dolet. = My leg hurts.
Pedes mihi (mei) dolent. = My feet hurt.
A capite doleo. = (I feel pain from my head.) My head hurts./ I have a headache. (n.b. All three of these ways of expressing pain are acceptable: My leg hurts, The leg is painful for me, I feel pain from/in my leg.)
Doleo! (Me paenitet.) = I’m sorry!
Bracchia et crura Luciae longa sunt. = Lucia’s arms and legs are long.
Gaius infantem in bracchiis tenebat. = Gaius was holding the baby in his arms.
Per pedes ibimus. = We will go on foot.
Murus decem pedes altus est. = The wall is ten feet high.
Puella capillos flavos habet. = The girl has blonde hair.
Ea est puella capillis flavis. = She is a blonde-haired girl/ a girl with blonde hair. (The ablative of description does not need a preposition)
Marcus est vir bracchiis fortibus. = Marcus is a man with strong arms/a strong-armed man.

In proximā lectione plus partes corporis humani discemus. Valete!

Next Lesson: Corpus Humanum 2

March 2, 2017



Thank you! Sorry for a not-directly related question, but would you happen to know of a good resource to learn more about non-standard Latin word order: i.e. to understand the emphasis being added when a sentence isn't SOV?


I found this site with a pretty good explanation. Unlike, for example, German, Latin has no absolutist rules about word order, but the end of the sentence is usually where the most important action happens. I think of it as being like a good story, that keeps you waiting to the very end to see how it will turn out. The times you are most likely to see exceptions to the SOV word order are when there is a "to be" verb or other linking verb, which may be placed in the middle: S-LV-Pr.N or S-LV-PrAdj. Also in asking questions, the word order is reversed, with the question-mark word at the beginning of the sentence, and this is frequently the verb plus a particle, eg "Habesne pecuniam? = Do you have the money?" And in poetry, all bets are off, and the flexible word order becomes part of the art form. Even in prose, there are many times where there isn't a clear reason or rule for a change in word order. I prefer not to spend too much time worrying about word order because there are so many other complexities to work out, and I think this is the way most modern Latinists approach it.


Excellent, thank you very much

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