Allen and Greenough/ New Latin Grammar

The Locative Case of the Third Declension

80. The Locative form for nouns of the third declension ends in the singular in or , in the plural in -ibus: as, rūrī, in the country; Carthāginī or Carthāgine, at Carthage; Trallibus, at Tralles. 1

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Notes
1
The Indo-European locative singular ended in , which became in Latin. Thus the Latin ablative in -e is, historically considered, a locative. The Latin ablative in (from -īd) was an analogical formation (cf. from -ād , from -ōd ), properly belonging to i- stems. With names of towns and a few other words, a locative function was ascribed to forms in (as, Carthāginī ), partly on the analogy of the real locative of o-stems (as, Corinthī , § 49 . a ); but forms in also survived in this use. The plural -bus is properly dative or ablative, but in forms like Trallibus it has a locative function. Cf. Philippīs (§ 49 . a ), in which the ending -īs is, historically considered, either locative, or instrumental, or both, and Athēnīs (§ 43 . c ), in which the ending is formed on the analogy of o-stems.