Saturday, July 30, 2011

Lingua Res Optima et Pessima

This is from the enormous anthology of distich poetry assembled by Barthold Nihus, Epigrammata Disticha, published in 1642; the poem is by Petrus Lindebergius (1562-1596).

Lingua Res Optima et Pessima
Et necis et vitae in lingua sedet ipsa potestas:
Res bona lingua bona est; res mala lingua mala.

The vocabulary is keyed to the DCC Latin Vocabulary list. There are two words in this poem that are not on the DCC list:

nex (necis, f.): death, murder
pessimus, -a, -um: worst

bonus -a -um: good
et: and
in: in, on (+ abl.); into, onto (+ acc)
ipse ipsa ipsum: him- her- itself
lingua -ae f.: tongue; language
malus -a -um: bad, evil; male: (adv.) badly
optimus -a -um: best, excellent; adv. optimē
potestās -ātis f.: power
rēs reī f.: thing (rēs pūblica, commonwealth; rēs familiāris, family property, estate; rēs mīlitāris, art of war; rēs novae, revolution)
sedeō sedēre sēdī sessum: sit
vīta -ae f.: life

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