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  5. "Quid agit Livia?"

"Quid agit Livia?"

Translation:How is Livia?

August 27, 2019



I'm questioning this translation. Literally, it means "What is Livia doing?" When I learned Latin, I learned "How is ..." as "Quomodo est ..." But maybe that was just an anglicized version.

Volgav vitsenanieff nivya kevach varatsach.


Yes, it seems to me that more commonly would mean "What is Livia doing?" This Latin program needs help.


Horace, Satires "quid agis, dulcissime rerum"


Agreed. Ancient sources typically use Ago, Agere, Egi, Actum as "to do" "to drive" "to spend time."


In my experience, medieval sources do to. Is this Neolatin, or is it maybe an idiomatic expression from Plautus or Terence, with whom I am not overly familiar?


I just made my first mistake because of this same structure and support what Arcana says. Is there any source that we don't know where it is stated that "ago" has the same value as "valeo"?


Sorry but there is a serious problem of pronunciation. If I hear "lyOOwiah" with a stress on the semivowel the V is not a semivowel anymore. The more correct pronounciation should be "lEEwiah" with a stress on th first "i". That would be acceptable but the soft "l" at the beginning and the weak "w" lead to hear something like "Iulia" (i.e. "yOOliah"), another valid person name.


Indeed, I put Julia. I yhink they are trying to be very careful about reconstructed pronunciation, which is causing some odd sounds. It's a bit of an odd choice, since I think they are using Neolatin idioms (maybe they are just idioms not found in the Classical and Medieval texts I am familiar with).


Thank you for the explanation. I think it was the full stress on an "impossible" place that caused my confusion when I first heard their pronunciation of "Livia".


What is Livia doing should also be correct, although in the context of "greetings" "How is Livia doing" is more obviously correct.


I'm wondering whether agit in Latin has any connections to agit (acts) in French.


Yes! A descendent!


Previously there are es, est, tu, dormit. This is interesting :D Still urbe (city) looks familiar to urban in English rather than ville in French!


Urban in English probably comes from "urbain" in French, because English doesn't descend directly from Latin, but from latin though French, as the English city is from French "cité", but "town" has a Germanic root (old English tun, and old Germanic "tunaz")

In French, ville and cité is used for a town/cité, and urbain/urbaine is the adjective relative to "ville".

In French "acte" (an act) and his verb "agir" (to act"):

Acte, from the Latin Acta.
And Agir, from the Latin Agere.

Both in French and Latin "agit" is the 3rd person of the singular (il agit).


While English does not descend directly from Latin, as French does, it has borrowed extensively directly from Latin. The borrowings through French often show specifically French developments, e.g. unique indirectly from unicus. A word that looks very close to its Latin root may not have come through French, especially if it is in an elevated stratum of speech. I often pointed out to my students the example of "fire" retained from Old English, which has an everyday sort of feel, "flame" from Old French (ultimately Latin "flamma"), which has a somewhat elevated, maybe poetic, feel, and "conflagration," which is taken directly from Latin and has a highly elevated, solemn feel. Animal words are great examples of this, with an English word ("cow") that a peasant might use in the field, a French word ("beef") for the animal as it is prepared for the lord's table, and a much newer Latin word ("bovine") to express a technical or scientific concept.

We do not have the word "urbs" in English, and while the Latin word "urbanus" would have been familiar to any educated Englishman (heck, it was the name of several popes), "urban" only comes into English in the seventeenth century directly from Latin in order to express the technical sense of something connected with a city or town, as opposed to "rural," which is a bit older in English, and may come either directly from Latin or through French.



"English descends from Latin through French"

No. Simply no.

Haven't we had this discussion in about three other threads already? It's nothing to do with "liking it" or "ideology" either (because, well, science doesn't work like that). You can graft a thousand cherry branches on a plum tree to the point where all the fruit you see will be cherries, but it is still a plum tree. English is a Germanic language and does not "descend" from Latin (via French or not) in any way, shape or form.


Thank you, James! As someone who (albeit ages ago) spent several happy years studying Old and Middle English, my hackles instinctively raised at "English descends from Latin through French", but I simply hadn't found the time to adress this properly. It turns out I couldn't have done it nearly as well. :)


Caesar invaded the Britain so the English has some Latin influences, in fact the English is the most Latin language of the germanica languages.


Yes: "ville" is from "villa," a country house.


You still see oppidum for market towns in the Middle Ages, but since villa is an estate with its dependent peasants, it comes to be used for smaller towns. Of course, larger towns in French are cité, from the political term civitas.


In the high Middle Ages, class terms come to have a moral sense as well. With increasing stability, fighting is no longer the exclusive sign of status so the chivalry (now no longer simply in the sense of horsemanship, but also morality) of the nobleman sets him apart. Such codes of behavior to set apart the upper classes only become more important in the Early Modern Era. You see an interestingly similar phenomenon in Tokugawa Japan in the development of bushido, the supposed code of the samurai.


And "villain" (peasants don't have the refined sense of morality we nobles have).


Yes, "village" borrowed to the French too (typical "age" ending), from the Old French vil/ville, that didn't mean a small "ville" (town), as most people think, and as I though too, but "vi(l)le" as a farm, a rural domain. As "villa" was also a rural domain, and not a rich house, as in the modern meaning.

"Villa" was a rural domain in Gallo-Latin, so it could mean it was a rich domain, like a big ranch, with servants, etc. When we say "a villa/une villa" nowadays, it means a rich house, but the rural meaning has been lost.

So, "villain" = a peasant, someone who worked in this rural domain, belonging to someone else (serf).


The "villain" is now pejorative both in English and in French, it's funny.

I don't know when the meaning changed to be pejorative, and if both French and English evolved to have the same pejorative meaning. That would be a big and strange coincidence, the most probable I think, is that "villain" was borrowed from French into English as "peasant" (word 1), and the new meaning as "bad guy" was borrowed again from French to English (word 2), a second time.

[deactivated user]

    Hence “village” as well.


    This means "What is Livia doing?" Here's the dictionary entry for ago: https://logeion.uchicago.edu/ago


    There's a lot of smart people on here, i just hope i can keep up, lol


    Suggestion: it would Add greatly to the latin course to supply a dictionary of words especially when the same word means more than one thing.


    There's already a dictionary of words, see the button "more", in the top menu.


    Anyone else hear something like a tambourine in the background?


    why can't it be Quomodo se habet Livia ?


    Couldn't we say something like "How is Livia doing?" Coz as far as I know, "quid _ agit" is asking how someone is feeling and things like that. Am I wrong?


    Does anyone else hear "agit" as "aget" in this audio?


    The 'qu' does not come across. It sounds like 'id'

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