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190. Deponent Verbs have the forms of the passive voice, with an active or reflexive signification.

1st conjugation Deponent Present System synopsis

1st conjugation Deponent Perfect System synopsis

2nd conjugation Deponent Present System synopsis

2nd conjugation Deponent Perfect System synopsis

3rd conjugation Deponent Present System synopsis

3rd conjugation Deponent Perfect System synopsis

4th conjugation Deponent Present System synopsis

4th conjugation Deponent Perfect System synopsis

a. Deponents have the participles of both voices.

sequēns following, secūtūrus about to follow
secūtus having followed, sequendus to be followed

b. The Perfect Participle generally has an active sense, but in verbs otherwise deponent it is often passive.

mercātus bought
adeptus gained (or having gained)

c. The Future Infinitive is always in the active form, thus sequor has secūtūrus (-a, -um) esse (not secūtum īrī).

d. The Gerundive, being passive in meaning, is found only in transitive verbs, or intransitive verbs used impersonally.

hōc cōnfitendum est This must be acknowledged.
moriendum est omnibus All must die.

e. Most deponents are intransitive or reflexive in meaning, corresponding to what in Greek is called the Middle Voice (§ 156.a Note).

f. Some deponents are occasionally used in a passive sense.

crīminor I accuse or I am accused

g. About twenty verbs have an active meaning in both active and passive forms.

mereō or mereor I deserve

191. More than half of all deponents are of the 1st Conjugation, and all of these are regular. The following deponents are irregular.

adsentior, -īrī, adsēnsus assent nītor, ī, nīsus (nīxus) strive
apīscor, (-ip-), ,
aptus (-eptus) get
oblīvīscor, , oblītus  forget
dēfetīscor, , -fessus faint opperior, -īrī, oppertus  await
expergīscor, ,
-perrēctus rouse
ōrdior, -īrī, ōrsus begin
experior, -īrī, expertus  try orior, -īrī, ortus
(oritūrus)  rise
(3rd conj. in most forms)
fateor, -ērī, fassus confess pacīscor, , pactus bargain
fruor, , frūctus
(fruitus)  enjoy
patior (-petior), ,
passus (-pessus) suffer
fungor, , fūnctus  fulfill -plector, , -plexus  clasp
gradior (-gredior), ,
gressus step
proficīscor, , profectus
set out
īrāscor, , īrātus  be angry queror, , questus  complain
lābor, , lāpsus  fall reor, rērī, ratus  think
loquor, , locūtus  speak revertor, , reversus  return
mētior, -īrī, mēnsus  measure ringor, , rictus  snarl
-minīscor, , -mentus  think sequor, , secūtus  follow
morior, (-īrī), mortuus (moritūrus)  die tueor, -ērī, tuitus (tūtus)  defend

nancīscor, , nactus (nānctus)  find

ulcīscor, , ultus  avenge
nāscor, , nātus  be born ūtor, , ūsus  use, employ

Note— The deponent comperior, -īrí, compertus, is rarely found for comperiō,
-īre. Revertor, until the time of Augustus, had regularly the active forms in the Perfect system revertī, reverteram, etc.

a. The following deponents have no supine stem.

dēvertor, -tī  turn aside (to lodge) medeor, -ērī  heal
diffiteor, -ērī  deny reminīscor, -ī  call to mind
fatīscor, -ī  gape vescor, -ī  feed upon
līquor, -ī  melt (intransitive).  

Note— Deponents are really passive (or middle) verbs whose active voice has disappeared. There is hardly one that does not show signs of having been used in the active at some period of the language.

192. A few verbs having no Perfect stem are regular in the Present, but appear in the tenses of completed action as deponents. These are called Semi-deponents. They are:

audeō, audēre, ausus  dare gaudeō, gaudēre, gāvīsus  rejoice
fīdō, fīdĕre, fīsus  trust soleō, solēre, solitus  be wont 

a. From audeō there is an old Perfect Subjunctive ausim. The form sōdēs for sī audēs (if you will), is frequent in the dramatists and rare elsewhere.

b. The active forms vāpulō, vāpulāre (be flogged) and vēneō, vēnīre (be sold)—contracted from vēnum īre (go to sale)—have a passive meaning, and are sometimes called neutral passives. To these may be added fierī, to be made (§ 204), and exsulāre (to be banished, live in exile); cf. accēdere, (to be added).

Note— The following verbs are sometimes found as semi-deponents:

iūrō, iūrāre, iūrātus, swear
nūbō, nūbere, nūpta, marry
placeō, placēre, placitus please

Suggested Citation

Meagan Ayer, Allen and Greenough’s New Latin Grammar for Schools and Colleges. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 2014. ISBN: 978-1-947822-04-7.