Thursday, September 20, 2007

Latin Via Proverbs 149

I hope these notes will help you tackle this group of proverbs in Latin Via Proverbs. This group includes third conjugation verbs with fourth declension nouns.

Please note: to read the proverbs in Latin, you need to acquire a copy of the book from! What I am providing here in the blog are notes to help people who are making their way through the book either in a Latin class or on their own. You can find more help at the wiki website.

Group 149

1911. I live at another's command. (You can find many variations on this saying, with the phrase alieno arbitrio, alieno arbitratu, alieno more and so on. You can also see this particular phrase in use in this Aesop's fable about the dog and the wolf.)

1912. I look back without grief. (This is a popular motto for family heraldry, bookplates, etc.)

1913. I recognize a tree by its fruit. (You will find this saying in Erasmus's Adagia, 1.9.39.)

1914. The tree does not fall at one stroke. (You can find many variations on this saying, e.g. Non uno ictu validam deicies quercum, "you will not knock down the strong oak tree with one blow," etc.)

1915. Fortune drags everything along in a blind dash. (This saying is adapted from Lucan.)

1916. The wolf seeks with his fang, the bull with his horn. (You will find this in Horace.)

1917. We recognize fools by their words; we recognize pots by their sound. (That is, the sound given by the pot gives a clue as to whether it is full inside or empty, just as we use the words of a person to tell if he is a fool or not!)

1918. He's making a shipwreck in port. (You can find this motif in Quintilian.)

1919. He's sinking his ship in port. (You can find this same motif in one of the Controversiae of Seneca.)

1920. He fools those who do not know him; to those who do know him, he is laughing-stock. (You can find this in Phaedrus's fable of the lion and the donkey.)

1921. One house does not nourish two dogs. (You will find this in Erasmus's Adagia, 2.2.24.)

1922. From the house of the cat, the mouse departs, uned. (In other words, the cat keeps the mouse from eating his fill ... I guess that mouse is lucky to get out alive! Compare the opposite English proverb: "When the cat's away, the mice play.")

This blog post is part of an evolving online guide for users of the book Latin Via Proverbs.

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