Monday, December 3, 2007

Study Guide: Group 5

Here is the latest Study Guide! I have not provided English translations, since those are easy enough to find by consulting versions of the Bible in English. Instead, I have tried to call attention to the various grammatical features of the verses, along with interesting vocabulary items, the importance of a specific Biblical context, etc.

You will find more Study Guides at the Vulgate Verses wiki.

These verses contain both first and second declension nouns and adjectives:

44. The verb is implied: Dominus (est) petra mea. Compare Verse #2: Petra mea es.

45. The verbs are implied here: Caelum sursum (est) et terra deorsum (est). Notice that these are adverbs, not adjectives; that is why terra can be deorsum. Adverbs do not have gender or number or case the way that adjectives do.

46. This is an "existential" use of the verb "to be" in Latin, which we would translation in English as "there is" or, as here, non est, "there is not." See the notes to Verse #16 and #17 for this verse about the unity of all in Jesus.

47. The verb is implied here: Super argentum et aurum gratia (est) bona.. The preposition super here does not mean physically above but metaphorically above, in the sense of being more valuable, superior.

48. Note the use of the genitive, Domini. The idea is that the earth is the Lord's, belongs to the Lord, etc.

49. This is from the famous scene of the Annunciation to Mary in Luke. The word ancilla, meaning a female slave or servant, is based on the same metaphor that calls God by the name dominus, which means "lord" or "master" (in the sense of a master of slaves or servants). For a lovely Christmas hymn based on the Annunciation scene, see the Angelus ad Virginem.

50. The phrase semita iusti is the subject, while the predicate is the adjective, recta. This word order, with the verb in final position, is extremely common in Latin.

51. The verb is implied here: In aeternum misericordia Domini (est).

52. The words sapientia and stultitia are opposites, but the contrast between the human and divine realms makes it possible to construct this paradoxical statement.

53. This is another existential use of the verb "to be." The phrase non est here would be rendered in English as "there is not, there does not exist," etc. The adjective bonum here is being used substantively, meaning "something good, goodness," etc. Thus, non est bonum would mean "there is nothing good" or "good does not exist."