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Allen and Greenough/ New Latin Grammar

Indirect Object with Special Verbs

367. Many verbs signifying to favor, help, please, trust, and their contraries; also to believe , persuade, command, obey, serve, resist, envy, threaten, pardon, and spare,1 take the Dative:—

cūr mihi invidēs, why do you envy me?

mihi parcit atque īgnōscit, he spares and pardons me.

īgnōsce patriō dolōrī (Liv. 3.48), excuse a father's grief.

subvenī patriae, opitulāre conlēgae (Fam. 10.10.2), come to the aid of your country, help your colleague.

mihi nōn displicet (Clu. 144), it does not displease me.

nōn omnibus serviō (Att. 13.49), I am not a servant to every man.

nōn parcam operae (Fam. 13.27) , I will spare no pains.

sīc mihi persuāsī (Cat. M. 78), so I have persuaded myself.

mihi Fabius dēbēbit īgnōscere sī minus êius fāmae parcere vidēbor quam anteā cōnsuluī (Tull. 3), Fabius will have to pardon me if I seem to spare his reputation less than I have heretofore regarded it.

huic legiōnī Caesar cōnfīdēbat maximē (B. G. 1.40.15), in this legion Cæsar trusted most.

In these verbs the Latin retains an original intransitive meaning. Thus: invidēre, to envy, is literally to look askance at; servīre is to be a slave to; suādēre is to make a thing pleasant (sweet) to.

a. Some verbs apparently of the same meanings take the Accusative.

Such are iuvō, adiuvō, help; laedō, injure; iubeō, order; dēficiō, fail; dēlectō, please:

hīc pulvis oculum meum laedit, this dust hurts my eye. [Cf. multa oculīs nocent, many things are injurious to the eyes.]

Note 1— Fīdō and cōnfīdō take also the Ablative (§ 431): as, multum nātūrā locī cōnfīdēbant (B. G. 3.9), they had great confidence in the strength of their position.

Note 2— Some common phrases regularly take the dative precisely like verbs of similar meaning. Such are— praestō esse, be on hand (cf. adesse); mōrem gerere, humor (cf. mōrigerārī); grātum facere, do a favor (cf. grātificārī); dictō audiēns esse, be obedient (cf. oboedīre); cui fidem habēbat (B. G. 1.19), in whom he had confidence (cf. cōnfīdēbat).

So also many phrases where no corresponding verb exists. Such are—bene (male, pulchrē, aegrē, etc.) esse, be well ( ill, etc.) off; iniūriam facere, do injustice to; diem dīcere, bring to trial (name a day for, etc.); agere grātiās, express one's thanks; habēre grātiam, feel thankful; referre grātiam, repay a favor; opus esse, be necessary; damnum dare, inflict an injury; acceptum (expēnsum) ferre (esse), credit (charge); honōrem habēre, to pay honor to.

b. Some verbs are used transitively with the Accusative or intransitively with the Dative without perceptible difference of meaning.

Such are adūlor, aemulor, dēspērō, praestōlor, medeor :—

adūlātus est Antōniō (Nep. Att. 8), he flattered Antony.

adūlārī Nerōnem (Tac. Ann. 16.19), to flatter Nero.

pācem nōn dēspērās (Att. 8.15.3), you do not despair of peace.

salūtī dēspērāre vetuit (Clu. 68), he forbade him to despair of safety.

c. Some verbs are used transitively with the Accusative or intransitively with the Dative with a difference of meaning:—2

partī cīvium cōnsulunt (Off. 1.85), they consult for a part of the citizens.

cum tē cōnsuluissem (Fam. 11.29), when I had consulted you.

metuēns puerīs (Plaut. Am. 1113), anxious for the children.

nec metuunt deōs (Ter. Hec. 772), they fear not even the gods. [So also timeō.]

prōspicite patriae (Cat. 4.3), have regard for the state.

prōspicere sēdem senectūtī;(Liv. 4.49.14), to provide a habitation for old age. [So also prōvideō.]

d. A few verbal nouns (as īnsidiae, ambush; obtemperātiō, obedience) rarely take the dative like the corresponding verbs:—

īnsidiae cōnsulī (Sall. Cat. 32), the plot against the consul (cf. īnsidior).

obtemperātiō lēgibus (Legg. 1.42), obedience to the laws (cf. obtemperō).

sibi ipsī respōnsiō (De Or. 3.207), an answer to himself (cf. respondeō).

Note— In these cases the dative depends immediately upon the verbal force of the noun and not on any complex idea (cf. § 366 . a, b).

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Notes
1
These include, among others, the following: adversor , cēdō , crēdō , faveō , fīdō , ignōscō , imperō , indulgeō , invideō , īrāscor , minitor , noceō , parcō , pāreō , placeō , resistō , serviō , studeō , suādeō ( persuādeō ), suscēnseō , temperō ( obtemperō ).
2
See the Lexicon under caveō , conveniō , cupiō , īnsistō , maneō , praevertō , recipiō , renūntiō , solvō , succēdō