Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Optativus Modus

Here is today's distich by John Owen, with an English translation by Thomas Harvey, 1.29. Although Latin does not use the optative mood (it has only the subjunctive), Greek does! I wasn't sure what image to use for "endless desire," but I thought maybe an "all-you-can-eat buffet" might do the trick. :-)

Optativus Modus
Infinitivo prope par modus optativus:
Optandi finem nam sibi nemo facit.

Th’ Infinitive is near th’ Optative Mood,
For Infinite’s the wish of Goods or Good.

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

infīnītīvus -a -um - unlimited, infinitive
optātīvus -a -um - belonging to a wish, optative

faciō facere fēcī factum: do, make
fīnis -is m.: end, boundary
modus -ī m.: measure, manner, kind
nam or namque: for, indeed, really
nēmo: no one (gen. nullius, dat. nulli, abl. nullo or nulla > nullus -a -um)
optō -āre: choose, select
pār paris: equal
prope: near, next; (comp.) propior, (superl.) proximus; (adv.) propē, nearly, almost
sui, sibi, sē: him- her- itself