The 9/11 Memorial and Virgil

Click here to read about the 9/11 memorial and Virgil passage.

Do you think this quote should be incorporated into the memorial?


Some Things Never Change….A Dog Mosaic

Below is a well-preserved mosaic from the ancient city of Pompeii.  As you know, this city was preserved by layers of volcanic ash…thank goodness (I guess?).   The volcano was Mount Vesuvius in Italy, the date was 79 AD.  Some guy named Pliny wrote about it all, we can read it some other time.  Meanwhile, check out the mosaic and let’s figure out how the Latin works.   Take a look, and then look below.

There are two words here:  cave canem.  The dog’s paw is breaking up the second word….fail.

The first word is a verb, cavere.  Caveo, cavere (second conjugation).  The form on the mosaic, cave, is called an imperative.  Imperatives give commands.   When you tell someone to do something, you are using the imperative.  To form the imperative, just take the infinitive form and chop off the re.  Now, cavere means to beware or to fear.  So, this mosaic is ordering the guest of the house BEWARE!  But, beware what?  You might have guessed.  That dog is off the chain.  The word canem you might recognize from the English word canine.  It means dog.  Canis, canis is a third declension noun, so what case is the form canem?  It’s an accusative (canis, canis, cani, canem, cane…).  The accusative case is used for direct objects.  Beware what?  Beware the dog.

Pretty cool, yeah?  

LEGITE…How To Form The Imperative!

imperative pic

Translate the following classroom commands:

1. Salve, Magistra!

2. Salvete, Discipuli!

What case are magistra and discipuli? How do we form this case?

3. Claude fenestram! (claudo, claudere: to close)

4. Aperi fenestram! (aperio, aperire: to open)

5. Nolite claudere ianuam!

6. Aperi ianuam!

7. Legite!

8. Ponite stilos! (stilus: pen)

9. Ponite libros in terra!

10. Surge!

11. Surgite, Discipuli!

12. Responde!

13. Ambula ad tabulam!

14. Collige cartas, Cornelii!

14. Redi cartas, discipula! (from redio, redire)

15. Tacite, Audite!

How would I say: Lucius and Rufus, walk out of the room!! (room= camera, camerae f.)

State Motto Activity

Latin Sayings and Snippets From States!

Try your best to translate the following state mottoes, all of which are written in Latin.  For words that you don’t know, I provide the vocabulary.  Other words we have had before and you can look up in Ecce if you don’t remember.


Arkansas:  regnat populus –  _____________________


regnare – to rule (reign, regent, regal, etc)

what is the subject?


Virginia:  sic semper tyrannis – _______________________


sic – thus

tyrannus, tyranni – tyrant

HINT: Tyrannis is dative plural. How is the dative case translated? Look in the Ecce glossary if you cannot remember!


South Carolina:  Dum spiro spero –  _________________


dum – while

spirare – to breath (perspiration, inspire, spirit)

sperare – to hope (does anyone know the spanish word for hope?)  🙂


Alabama:  audemus iura nostra defendere – __________________________


audere – to dare (the english adjective audacious means daring)

iura, iurorum – neuter, only in the plural, “rights”

nostrus, a, um: our  (compare spanish nosotros and italian nostro, nostra)

defendere – what do you think?  to defend!

(note, iura is neuter plural ACCUSATIVE!)


Arizona:  Ditat Deus – ____________________


deus, dei – god

ditare – to nourish

what is the subject?


Oklahoma:  Labor omnia vincit – ____________________


omnia – all things  (neuter)

vincere– to conquer

Adjectives are often used as Nouns (substantively), the masculine usually to denote men or people in general of that kind, the feminine women, and the neuter things

Thus, boni sunt rari = good men are rare.  (notice – we don’t need the word for men!)  Or:  Bonae sunt rarae = good women are rare.       SO: if you see an adjective and you don’t see a noun that it modifies….it’s probably substantive.

The state that holds a special place in my heart…


Maine:  Dirigo – ____________________


dirigere– to direct

Credit to Gabe, because I basically just took his activity and made it look pretty, with a few additions like my favorite state of Maine.   🙂

Academia Aestiva Latina!

The Getty Villa is offering a week-long summer Latin academy for teens–“This year’s Summer Latin Academy theme, “Tempus Fugit (Time Flies),” will concentrate on the passage of time and how it was marked in antiquity. The five-day week will be treated like the Roman calendar, and important dates and holidays will receive close attention as we study the customs and traditions of the ancient Romans”


The summer academy is FREE!! Applications are due June. 1st. Click here to learn about the program.