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Allen and Greenough/ New Latin Grammar

Cognate Accusative

390. An intransitive verb often takes the Accusative of a noun of kindred meaning, usually modified by an adjective or in some other manner.

This construction is called the Cognate Accusative or Accusative of Kindred Signification:

tūtiōrem vītam vīvere (Verr. 2.118), to live a safer life.

tertiam iam aetātem hominum vīvēbat (Cat. M. 31), he was now living the third generation of men.

servitūtem servīre, to be in slavery.

coīre societātem, to [go together and] form an alliance.

a. Verbs of taste, smell, and the like take a cognate accusative of the quality:—

vīnum redolēns (Phil. 2.63), smelling [of] wine.

herbam mella sapiunt (Plin. H. N. 11.18), the honey tastes [of] grass.

olēre malitiam (Rosc. Com. 20), to have the odor of malice.

Cordubae nātīs poētīs, pingue quiddam sonantibus atque peregrīnum (Arch. 26), to poets born at Cordova, whose speech had a somewhat thick and foreign accent.

b. The cognate accusative is often loosely used by the poets:—

huic errōrī similem [errōrem] īnsānīre (Hor. S. 2.3.62), to suffer a delusion like this.

saltāre Cyclōpa (id. 1.5.63), to dance the Cyclops (represent in dancing).

Bacchānālia vīvere (Iuv. 2.3), to live in revellings.

Amaryllida resonāre (Ecl. 1.5), to reëcho [the name of] Amaryllis.

intonuit laevum (Aen. 2.693), it thundered on the left.

dulce rīdentem, dulce loquentem (Hor. Od. 1.22.23) sweetly smiling, sweetly prattling.

acerba tuēns (Aen. 9.794), looking fiercely. [Cf. Eng. “to look daggers.”]

torvum clāmat (id. 7.399), he cries harshly.

c. A neuter pronoun or an adjective of indefinite meaning is very common as cognate accusative (cf. §§ 214. d, 397. a):—

Empedoclēs multa alia peccat (N. D. 1.29), Empedocles commits many other errors.

ego illud adsentior Theophrastō (De Or. 3.184), in this I agree with Theophrastus.

multum tē ista fefellit opīniō (Verr. 2.1.88), you were much deceived in this expectation (this expectation deceived you much).

plūs valeō, I have more strength.

plūrimum potest, he is strongest.

quid mē ista laedunt (Leg. Agr. 2.32), what harm do those things do me?

hōc tē moneō, I give you this warning (cf. d. N.1).

id laetor, I rejoice at this (cf. d. N.1).

quid moror, why do I delay?

quae hominēs arant, nāvigant, aedificant (Sall. Cat. 2.7), what men do in ploughing, sailing, and building.

d. So in many common phrases:—

sī quid ille sē velit (B. G. 1.34), if he should want anything of him (if he should want him in anything).

numquid, Geta, aliud mē vīs (Ter. Ph. 151), can I do anything more for you, Geta (there is nothing you want of me, is there)? [A common form of leave-taking.]

quid est quod, etc., why is it that, etc.? [Cf. hōc erat quod (Aen. 2.664), was it for this that, etc.?]

Note 1— In these cases substantives with a definite meaning would be in some other construction:—

in hōc eōdem peccat, he errs in this same point.

bonīs rēbus laetārī, to rejoice at prosperity. [Also: in, , or ex.]

dē testāmentō monēr , to remind one of the will. [Later: genitive, § 351.]

officī admonēre, to remind one of his duty. [Also: dē officiō.]

Note 2— In some of these cases the connection of the accusative with the verb has so faded out that the words have become real adverbs: as, multum, plūs, plūrimum; plērumque, for the most part, generally; cēterum, cētera, for the rest, otherwise, but; prīmum, first; nihil, by no means, not at all; aliquid, somewhat; quid, why; facile, easily. So in the comparative of adverbs (§ 218 ). But the line cannot be sharply drawn, and some of the examples under b may be classed as adverbial.

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