Thursday, July 12, 2012

Tace Tu Primus

80     -     81     -     82

Tace Tu Primus
Quod tacitum vis esse, tace tu primus; amico,
   Quae tua sunt debes, non aliena, loqui.

Source: François Oudin (1673-1752), Silva Distichorum, 144. Meter: Elegiac. Note the emphatic use of the pronoun tu;  the imperative tace already has "you" as its subject, so using the pronoun tu is purely emphatic. It's up to you to keep quiet if you want to keep something a secret; you cannot tell other people a secret and then put the burden on them of keeping silent!

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

That which (quod) you want kept quiet (vis esse tacitum), you must first keep quiet yourself (tu primus tace); you should tell your friend (debes loqui amico) the things which are yours (quae tua sunt), not someone else's (non aliena).

aliēnus -a -um: foreign, strange
amīcus -a -um: friendly; (as subst.) friend
dēbeō dēbēre dēbuī dēbitum: owe, be obliged
loquor loquī locūtus sum: speak, talk
nōn: not
prīmus -a -um: first; adv. prīmum: at first, firstly
qui quae quod: who, which, what / quis quid: who? what? which?
sum, esse, fuī: be, exist
taceō -ēre -uī -itum: be silent; tacitus -a -um, silent
tū tuī tibi tē: you (sing.)
tuus -a -um: your
volō velle voluī: wish, be willing