Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Brevitas

Here is today's distich by John Owen, with an English translation by Thomas Harvey, 7.31. Any distich in praise of brevity offers ipso facto proof!

Brevitas
Perspicua brevitate nihil magis afficit aures;
In verbis, ubi res postulat, esto brevis.


BREVITY
Perspicuous Brevity doth please in chief:
In words, which things concern’d contain, be brief.


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

brevitas, brevitātis f. - shortness, brevity
perspicuus -a -um - evident, clear
pōstulo -āre: demand, require

afficiō -ficere -fēcī -fectum: affect, visit with (+ abl.)
auris -is f.: ear
brevis -e: short, shallow, brief; adv. breviter
in: in, on (+ abl.); into, onto (+ acc)
magis: more
nihil, nīl: nothing; not at all
rēs reī f.: thing (rēs pūblica, commonwealth; rēs familiāris, family property, estate; rēs mīlitāris, art of war; rēs novae, revolution)
sum, esse, fuī: be, exist
ubi: where, when
verbum -ī n.: word


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