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  5. "Mustelae in bibliotheca cele…

"Mustelae in bibliotheca celeriter currunt."

Translation:The weasels in the library run quickly.

December 28, 2019



Why is "in the library the weasels run quickly" wrong?


Marcus, you really shouldn't be calling our students weasels!


They have to run quickly, pest control is after them.


Please, I would like to know how/if these are expressed differently: My hunch is (b), how to make a subject-clause?

"Mustelae in bibliotheca celeriter currunt."

(a) [The weasels in the library] run quickly

(b) [The weasels] run quickly in the library


I suspect that the Latin sentence could be used for both meanings, and context would tell use which was implied. Someone could correct me should I be wrong.

(a) could be distinguished however with a relative clause: Mustelae, quae in bibliotheca sunt, celeriter currunt. -> "The weasels, who are in the library, run quickly."


thanks! that relative clause clarifies (a), because Mustelae, quae in triclinio sunt, lente currunt. But when those slow weasels are brought to the library, they run quickly. So (b), "Mustelae in bibliotheca celeriter currunt."

It is taking me too long, i must give up trying to make relative clause or subject-clause (nominative clause) using a participle.

If anyone could help construct the Latin with a nominative clause and/or a relative clause using participle...

thank you all, again!


Maybe in German, but Latin admits of no mechanism linking prepositional phrases to a noun. However, the common use of participles in Latin would render:

Mustelae entes in bibliotheca celeriter currunt.

(NB: present active participles decline like 3rd declension nouns)

German? Die in der Bibliotek Wiesel laufen schnell.

Ich glaube dass, die in der Bibliotek Wiesel schnell laufen können.

Dass, die in der Bibliotek Wiesel schnell laufen könnten, ist weder ein Diskussionsthema noch wird es von Fachleuten diskutiert.


thanks! I thought there was no present participle for esse. So, is this a possible style-preference variant?

Mustelae in bibliotheca entes celeriter currunt.


I don't see any issue with that order personally. Maybe it would be considered a little more poetic?

Ens as a participle seems to come in Medieval Latin. All the books I have (almost exclusively books focused Classical Latin, one is Ecclesiastical) state that esse does not have a present participle. Wiktionary lists it as being the present participle but in Medieval Latin and a few other online dictionaries list it as such.

The closest thing I could find in my books (in my Oxford Pocket Latin Dictionary) was the neuter noun ens meaning 'thing', but it listed it as a Late/Medieval Latin word as well.

Using PHI Latin Texts search, which focuses on text pre 200 A.D., it only listed two instances of the usage entes.


my main concern was stylistic, to avoid the (valid) relative clause approach and, a priori, use a participle other than the contested esse in present, but "living" adds too much to the original sentence.

I like having at least one in-depth exploration, while learning the rest of the time quickly. It is an authentic ancient method BTW. Mores antiqui sunt plurimi .


Could that also mean thy run into the library or does this require a different preposition?


For into you would need to use in with the accusative form: in bibliothecam -> 'into the library'

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