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Allen and Greenough/ New Latin Grammar

Dative of Reference

378. The Dative is used of the person from whose point of view an opinion is stated or a situation or a direction is defined.

This is often called the Dative of the Person Judging,1 but is merely a weakened variety of the Dative of Reference. It is used—

  1. Of the mental point of view (in my opinion, according to me. etc.):—

      Platō mihi ūnus īnstar est centum mīlium (Brut. 191), in my opinion (to me) Plato alone is worth a hundred thousand.

      erit ille mihi semper deus (Ecl. 1.7), he will always be a god to me (in my regard).

      quae est ista servitūs tam clārō hominī (Par. 41), what is that slavery according to the view of this distinguished man?

  2. Of the local point of view (as you go in etc.). In this use the person is commonly denoted indefinitely by a participle in the dative plural:—

      oppidum prīmum Thessaliae venientibus ab Ēpīrō (B. C. 3.80), the first town of Thessaly as you come from Epirus (to those coming, etc.).

      laevā parte sinum intrantī (Liv. 26.26) , on the left as you sail up the gulf (to one entering).

      est urbe ēgressīs tumulus (Aen. 2.713), there is, as you come out of the city, a mound (to those having come out).

    Note— The Dative of the Person Judging is (by a Greek idiom) rarely modified by nōlēns, volēns (participles of nōlō, volō), or by some similar word:—

      ut quibusque bellum invītīs aut cupientibus erat (Tac. Ann. 1.59), as each might receive the war reluctantly or gladly.

      ut mīlitibus labōs volentibus esset (Iug. 100), that the soldiers might assume the task willingly.

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Notes
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Datīvus iūdicantis