Friday, May 25, 2012

Fac Discas Multa


73     -     74     -     75


Fac Discas Multa
Cum tibi contigerit studio cognoscere multa,
Fac discas multa, et vites nescire doceri.


Source: The Distichs of Cato (4th century), 4.48. Meter: Dactylic Hexameter. This is a poem where the reading of the second line has been much debated and disputed. After pondering the various options, I decided to choose the one you see here, which has a command, fac, followed by two subjunctives explaining the command: fac [ut] discas and fac [ut] vites. You will find quite a few other ways of rendering that line in Latin, depending on which edition of Cato you are looking at.

The vocabulary is keyed to the DCC Latin Vocabulary list. All the words in this poem are on that list:

cōgnōscō -gnōscere -gnōvī -gnitum: learn, understand
contingō -tingere -tigī -tactum: touch, be contiguous to
cum: with (prep. + abl.); when, since, although (conjunction + subj.)
discō -ere didicī: learn
doceō -ēre -uī doctum: teach
et: and
faciō facere fēcī factum: do, make
multus -a -um: much, many; multō, by far
nesciō -scīre: not know, be ignorant
sciō -īre -īvī/-iī -ītum: know
studium -ī n.: eagerness, zeal
tū tuī tibi tē: you (sing.)
vītō -āre: avoid, shun




Make Sure You Learn Many Things
When it has befallen you (cum contigeri tibi) to learn many things eagerly (cognoscere multa studio), make sure (fac) that you learn many things (discas multa) and avoid (et vites) not knowing how to be taught (nescire doceri).

Cum tibi ~ contige~rit studi~o cog~noscere ~ multa,
Fac dis~cas mul~ta, et vi~tes nes~cire do~ceri.


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