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  5. "The soldiers destroy the bri…

"The soldiers destroy the bridge by fire."

Translation:Milites pontem igne delent.

September 30, 2019



"Igne" is the ablative of "ignis"?


Whit the fire/By the fire (With the help of, by the means of...)

"Ablative of means" here.


What is the preferred/most common word order here? Should igne appear before the verb, emphasizing their connection, or before the object, emphasizing their connection? I would tend towards the former, which is also suggested by Duo, but I'd like additional information.


According to this page, the ablative of means seems to have a relatively free word order:


Pattern 1

Omnibus precibus ōrābant -> Abl, verb

Cum complētus mercātōrum carcer esset -> Abl, Subj, verb

Multae istārum arborum meā manū sunt satae. -> (Subj), Abl, Verb, Compl

Omnia plēna lūctūs et maerōris fuērunt -> Subj, Abl, Verb

Pattern 2:

Potius oppressa virtūte audācia est -> Compl, Abl, (Subj), Verb

Tōtum montem hominibus complēvit. -> Compl, Abl, Verb

ōllam dēnāriōrum implēre -> Compl, Abl, Verb

Pattern 3:

Vīta plēna et cōnferta voluptātibus -> Subj, Abl

So, it seems to depend on the emphasis, as the complement of means is particularly prone to be emphasized or not.

In their page, I noticed "ablative of means" in the first place = seems to be the emphasized version,
and "ablative of means" in the middle, sometimes after the complement.

Most of the time it is just before the verb. = I think it's the most common pattern.
(Sometimes the subject comes between the ablative of means and the verb)

The Duo sentence is Milites pontem igne delent -> Subj, Compl, Abl, Verb

According to these examples, the most common order would probably be:
Compl Abl Sub Verb, or Subj, Abl, Verb, Compl.

-Pontem igne milites delent.
- Or Milites igne delent pontem.

The duo's sentence seems to emphasize rather the subject, here.


I wrote "Milites pontem delent igne". It is good too, isn't it?


Just report it, I think it's equally correct, and that they will add it.


It's very vague as to what word for fire should be used. Did they burn it be use of a pyre? What about by flame? They should be more spcific as to which word for fire should be used.


I gave the answer "milites delent pontem igne" which is equally valid given it contains the same exact ingredients.

I understand it wasn't in the traditional SOV word order but it is still a grammatically correct sentence no?


Just report it, it should be added.


Having sung the sentence "dum veneris judicare seculum per ignem" several times in my life, I wondered if 'per ignem' would work in this sentence too. Or is that strictly ecclesiastical Latin?


In early lessons we're told that word order makes little difference because all words in Latin are cased to show their use. Yet now Duo requires a specific word order? Which is it? No order or a specific one?


¿Miles igne pontem delent?


milites igne pontem delent

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