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  5. "The first book is long."

"The first book is long."

Translation:Volumen primum longum est.

October 11, 2019



Why is 'Librum' not acceptable here?


You would need to the use the nominative form liber (and make sure the adjectives agree).


Indeed, liber primus longus est works fine.


My sentence was accepted: Primus liber longus est.


There's nothing making the word "book" accusative: you'd need a verb (like I have, He reads, She looks for, etc.) that controls a direct object; or you'd need one of the prepositions (like ad, per, prope) that govern an accusative object (He puts a pen near the book).


But then why are the adjectives following volumen in the accusative form? Sorry very new to Latin so I am a little confused here


The adjectives "first" and "long" have 30 forms each (3 genders, m/f/n; 2 numbers, sing. vs. plur.; 5 cases, nomin/gen/dat/acc/abl).

They are not in the accusative! It's true that the ending -um is used in the 2nd decl. for "masc sing accus" (as in, "I hold the first long book": Prīmum librum longum teneō); but the crucial point here is that the ending -um is also used for "neuter singular nominative," as here: Volūmen is a neuter noun (of the 3rd decl.), so it is modified by -um adjectives.

The adjectives are listed as: prīmus, prīma, prīmum; and longus, longa, longum. Those are the 3 nominatives singular, masc/fem/neuter.

(Does that help?)


My first thought with this sentence is that a scroll with a lot of text would be, literally, very long. However I realized that books may also be long, which seems a bit funny, since they are not linear anymore.


The hint has "librum" as the first option but it is not accepted


The hints are not always correct or helpful. I find this happens in most courses to some extent.

SuzanneNussbaum has a wonderful explanation in this discussion as to why librum does not work here.


Grātiās tibi agō!!


I understand where you are coming from. But there is a possibility of librum being used.


Since librum is accusative case (analogous to English HIM or HER), it cannot be used in a sentence where "is" is the verb.


All I can think of is something like "They consider the book to be long." or something similar. What were you thinking of?


That would be a so-called 'indirect statement':

Librum longum esse dūcunt .

(The verb of THINKING, SAYING, KNOWING, FEELING, etc.--here, dūcunt in the sense of "consider"--as in "We HOLD these truths to be self-evident"--governs an accus/infin clause, replacing the type of subordinate clause (starting with conjunction THAT) with nominative and indicative, that we use in English.)

Liber est longus is the version in "direct speech" (an actual quote from somebody).


Well, there you go, JMcQ455870. You were right.


Yes, you can always find a way to make a word accusative! (But it changes the Duo sentence we all started with.)


Right you are. It's now no longer the same sentence. This is really useful info, though, so thanks.


Volumen and liber both mean "book" so which one am I supposed to use? I was marked wrong for using liber


What exactly was your sentence? There are other comments in the discussion mentioning that liber was accepted in their given sentences.


'primum librum est longum' not accepted?


Unacceptable, because librum is an accusative form of the noun, that can't be the subject of est .

The word for "book" that you're using here is liber, librī, m., of the 2nd declension.

Prīmus liber est longus would be the way to use this noun in the required meaning.


Why is liber or librum not accepted as book???


Liber IS accepted. Primus liber longus est.


Librum is accusative, and so cannot serve as the subject. Liber is the one you want.

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