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Allen and Greenough/ New Latin Grammar

GENITIVE WITH VERBS/ Verbs of Remembering and Forgetting

350. Verbs of remembering and forgetting take either the Accusative or the Genitive of the object:—

a. Meminī takes the Accusative when it has the literal sense of retaining in the mind what one has seen, heard, or learned. Hence the accusative is used of persons whom one remembers as acquaintances, or of things which one has experienced.

So oblīvīscor in the opposite sense,—to forget literally, to lose all memory of a thing (very rarely, of a person).

Cinnam meminī; (Phil. 5.17), I remember Cinna.

utinam avum tuum meminissēs (id . 1.34), oh! that you could remember your grandfather! (but he died before you were born).

Postumium, cûius statuam in Isthmō meminisse tē dīcis (Att. 13.32), Postumius, whose statue you say you remember (to have seen) on the Isthmus.

omnia meminit Sīron Epicūrīdogmata (Acad. 2.106), Siron remembers all the doctrines of Epicurus.

multa ab aliīs audīta meminērunt (De Or. 2.355), they remember many things that they have heard from others.

tōtam causam oblītus est (Brut. 217), he forgot the whole case.

hinc iam oblīvīscere Grâiōs (Aen. 2.148), from henceforth forget the Greeks (i.e. not merely disregard them, but banish them from your mind, as if you had never known them).

b. Meminī takes the Genitive when it means to be mindful or regardful of a person or thing, to think of somebody or something (often with special interest or warmth of feeling).

So oblīvīscor in the opposite sense,—to disregard, or dismiss from the mind,—and the adjective oblītus, careless or regardless.

ipse suī meminerat (Verr. 2.2.136), he was mindful of himself (of his own interests).

faciam ut hûius locī di eique meique semper memineris (Ter. Eun. 801), I will make you remember this place and this day and me as long as you live.

nec mē meminisse pigēbit Elissae, dum memor ipse meī; (Aen. 4.335), nor shall I feel regret at the thought of Elissa , so long as I remember myself.

meminerint verēcundiae (Off. 1.122), let them cherish modesty.

hūmānae īnfīrmitātis meminī; (Liv. 30.31.6), I remember human weakness.

oblīvīscī temporum meōrum, meminisse āctiōnum (Fam. 1.9.8), to disregard my own interests, to be mindful of the matters at issue.

nec tamen Epicūrī licet oblīvīscī; (Fin. 5.3), and yet I must not forget Epicurus.

oblīvīscere caedis atque incendiōrum (Cat. 1.6), turn your mind from slaughter and conflagrations (dismiss them from your thoughts).

Note 1— With both meminī and oblīvīscor the personal and reflexive pronouns are regularly in the Genitive; neuter pronouns and adjectives used substantively are regularly in the Accusative; abstract nouns are often in the Genitive. These uses come in each instance from the natural meaning of the verbs (as defined above).

Note 2— Meminī in the sense of mention takes the Genitive: as, eundem Achillam cûius suprā meminimus (B. C. 3.108), that same Achillas whom I mentioned above.

c. Reminīscor is rare. It takes the Accusative in the literal sense of call to mind, recollect; the Genitive in the more figurative sense of be mindful of:

dulcīs moriēns reminīscitur Argōs (Aen. 10.782), as he dies he calls to mind his beloved Argos.

reminīscerētur et veteris incommodī populī Rōmānī et prīstinae virtūtis Helvētiōrum (B. G. 1.13), let him remember both the former discomfiture of the Roman people and the ancient valor of the Helvetians. [A warning,— let him bear it in mind (and beware)!]

d. Recordor, recollect, recall, regularly takes the Accusative:—

recordāre cōnsēnsum illum theātrī; (Phil. 1.30), recall that unanimous agreement of the [audience in the] theatre.

recordāminī omnīs cīvīlīs dissēnsiōnēs (Cat. 3.24), call to mind all the civil wars.

Note— Recordor takes the genitive once (Pison. 12); it is never used with a personal object, but may be followed by with the ablative of the person or thing (cf. § 351 . N.):—

dē tē recordor (Scaur. 49), I remember about you.

dē illīs (lacrimīs) recordor (Planc. 104), I am reminded of those tears.

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