Good evening! I have some questions regarding the use of adverbs in Latin.

Specifically, I would like to know whether "tempori" or "in tempore" (ablative) may be used interchangeably or if there is a difference between the terms. The lesson "Time" uses "tempori" as a translation of "on time", but I have not seen this word on the Internet at all. Instead, I found "in tempore" (using the ablative) as a translation of "on time".

I would like to know if there is a rule to form adverbs, or if the case I mentioned is an exception. I previously thought that "proposition + ablative" was always used to make adverbs. Thanks in advance.

April 30, 2020


Check a good dictionary or grammar: Lewis and Short's dictionary (§§ II.A, II.B). Allen and Greenough's Grammar (start at §213). Gildersleeve and Lodge's Grammar (start at §91).

Allen and Greenough can be found several places online in HTML, for instance. And any of these books are worth buying, of course. For the grammars it is not difficult to find good used copies.

There are plenty of websites that explain this sort of thing. Some I saw recently based on Wheelock's Latin Grammar explain things in a slightly less concentrated way and are quite good and useful even without the textbook itself (sorry, I don't have any links).

As far as I can tell, from the Oxford Latin Dictionary, temperi / tempori is the "locative" form of tempus, temporis, n., meaning "at the right time, seasonably, in time." So, it functions like an adverb (the "locatives" are moribund, except for place names (cities, towns, small islands; also domus and rus ).

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