Latin/5th Declension

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Salvēte omnēs! Welcome back to Latin for Wikiversity. If you would like to catch up, you can find past lessons in the directory, a classified vocabulary list, and Memrise courses in the links on the right.

This week we’ll learn the basics of 5th declension nouns. Just as with the 4th declension, there are relatively few nouns in this group, but some of them are used with high frequency. Most 5th declension nouns are feminine, with one major exception. The genitive singular ending for this declension is –ei. Here is a basic case table:

Fifth declension noun endings
case singular plural typical use
nominative -ēs -ēs subject or predicate noun
genitive -eī -ērum possession, the “of” case
dative -eī -ēbus indirect object, the “to/for” case
accusative -em -ēs direct object (also some objects of preps.)
ablative -ēbus objects of prepositions, etc. “by/with/from” case

New Vocabulary

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Latin English Audio (Classical) Notes
acies, acieī sharp edge, battle line
diēs, diēī (m.) day Masculine, but when referring to a specific date it may be feminine, e.g.tertiā diē = on the third day
faciēs, facieī face, form, shape
fidēs, fideī faith, trust, loyalty
merīdiēs, merīdieī (m.) midday, noon
rēs, reī thing, matter, affair, subject Used in countless ways in Latin, depending on context
spēs, speī hope

New Sentences

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Latin English Notes
Lūcia bonum diem nōn habet. Lucia is not having a good day.
ante merīdiem (a.m.) before noon
post merīdiem (p.m.) after noon
Dē Rērum Naturā On the Nature of Things Epicurius’ philosophical treatise on the nature of the universe
Ex rē et ex tempōre. According to the time and circumstance.
Rēs adversae unfavorable circumstances, adversity
Rēs secundae favorable circumstances, prosperity
Rēs novae revolution, political change lit. “new things”
In rēbus adversīs amīcī nostrī nōbīscum stant. In adversity our friends stand with us.
Rēs pūblica the republic; public affairs, government, the state
Nihil ad rem. Nothing to do with the subject, not to the point.
Argūmentum ad rem. An argument addressing the subject, to the point In contrast with argūmentum ad hominem, attacking the man who takes the opposing position.
Nōn est spēs victōriae. There is not (no) hope of victory.
Nautae spem habent. The sailors have hope.
Prīmā faciē At first appearance/ preliminary indication.
Sine diē without a day Used when adjourning a meeting without setting a new date
Carpe diem. Seize the day.
Eō diē veniunt. They are coming on that day.
Mīlitēs multōs diēs ambulant. The soldiers walk for many days.
Bonā fidē in good faith
Magnam fidem dēmōnstrant. They show great faith.
Avus meus magnam aciem mentis habet. My grandfather has great sharpness of mind.
Barbarī impetum in aciem Rōmānam faciunt. The barbarians make an attack on the Roman battle line.

Now that all 5 declensions have been introduced, all Latin nouns are accessible to us, and it’s just a matter of reviewing case uses and endings to keep them fresh. We know “domus” (house, 4th declension), and “dies” (day, 5th declension), so we will have lessons for “household” and “time” in the near future. Habete bonum diem!


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