Dative Usage

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The Datives in Cicero's Second Catilinarian Oration

Get a feeling for the uses of the dative case by studying the following examples.

Catilinam  pestem patriae nefarie molientem ex urbe eiecimus.

We expelled Catiline from the city as he impiously worked to bring pestilence to the country.

with molior pestem

Catilinam vobis atque huic urbi ferro flammaque minitantem ex urbe eiecimus.

We expelled Catiline from the city as he threatened you and this city with fire and sword.

with minitor

nulla iam pernicies a monstro illo moenibus ipsis intra moenia comparabitur.

No longer will destruction be prepared by that monster against these very walls even as he stands within them.

with comparo

ei ferrum e manibus extorsimus

We have twisted the sword from him out of his hands.

with extorqueo: disadvantage

[haec urbs] quidem mihi laetari videtur, quod tantam pestem evomuerit.

Indeed this city seems to me to be delighted that it has vomited out such a pestilence.

with videor

sed cum viderem, ne vobis quidem omnibus etiam tum re probata, fore ut eius socios invidia oppressus persequi non possem,

But since I saw that, since the matter was not proven at that time even to all of you, it would turn out that, stymied by hostile public opinion, I would not be able to pursue his associates,

with probo

Tongillum mihi eduxit quem amare in praetexta coeperat,

He moved Tongillus out, I see, one whom he had begun to like in his young adolescence.

reference, with educo

[eorum] aes alienum contractum in popina nullum rei publicae motum adferre poterat:

The debt they accumulated in taverns could raise no rebellion against the republic.

with motus

quibus ego si edictum praetoris ostendero, concident.

If I show the praetor’s edict to them, they will collapse

with ostendo

mementote non tam exercitum illum esse nobis quam hos qui exercitum deseruerunt pertimescendos.

Remember that we have to fear not so much that army as these who have deserted the army.

agent: nobis pertimescendos

video cui sit Apulia attributa,

I see to whom Apulia has been assigned.

with attribuo

video quis sibi has urbanas insidias caedis depoposcerit.

I see who has demanded for himself the murderous ambushes in the city.

with deposco

non est iam lenitati locus

There is no longer a place for leniency

with locus

levata mihi et recreata res publica videtur.

The republic seems to me relieved and refreshed.

with videor

qui alios ipse amabat turpissime, aliorum amori flagitiosissime serviebat,

who loved some most repulsively himself and serviced the love of others most disgracefully

with servio

aliis fructum libidinum, aliis mortem parentum pollicebatur.

he promised to some the fulfilment of their lusts, to others the death of their parents

with polliceor

hoc vero quis ferre possit, inertis homines fortissimis viris insidiari, stultissimos prudentissimis, ebrios sobriis, dormientis vigilantibus?

But who could bear this, that lazy people plot against very brave men, supremely stupid ones against the supremely prudent ones, drunk ones against sober ones, and sleepers against the vigilant?

with insidior

qui mihi accubantes in conviviis, eructant sermonibus suis caedem bonorum

who I imagine reclining at banquets belching forth in their conversation the death of decent men.


quibus ego confido impendere fatum aliquod

over whom I trust fate some fate hangs

with impendeo

et [ego confido impendere] poenam iam diu improbitati, nequitiae, sceleri, libidini debitam.

and a punishment now long due for their wickedness, worthlessness, criminal action, and lust

with debitus

meus consulatus multa saecula propagarit rei publicae.

my consulate has extended the life of the republic many centuries [extended many centuries for the state]

with propago

nullus rex [est] qui bellum populo Romano facere possit.

there is no king who can make war on the Roman people

with facio bellum

cum luxuria nobis, cum amentia, cum scelere certandum est.

we have to struggle with extravagance, with foolishness, and with criminality

agent: nobis certandum est

huic ego me bello ducem profiteor, Quirites;

I declare myself a general in this war, Citizens.

with dux

patefeci cetera: quem ad modum esset ei ratio totius belli descripta edocui.

I exposed the rest: I explained how the plan of the entire war had been sketched out by him.

agent: ei descripta

cum aquilam illam argenteam cui ille etiam sacrarium domi suae fecerat scirem esse praemissam.

since I knew that that silver eagle for which he had even made a shrine at his house had been sent on ahead

after facio

est mihi tanti, Quirites, [hanc] tempestatem subire, dum modo a vobis periculum depellatur.

It is of such great importance to me, citizens, to undergo this storm, provided that the danger be deflected from you.

reference, with est tanti

sed mihi credite, non est iturus.

But believe me, he is not going to go.

with credo

multoque magis illud timeo ne mihi sit invidiosum aliquando quod illum emiserim

I am much more afraid that someday the fact that I let him go will rouse up hatred against me

with invidiosum

nunc vero, cum ei nihil adhuc praeter ipsius voluntatem cogitationemque acciderit, optemus potius ut eat in exsilium.

But now, since nothing up till this point has happened to him beyond his wants and plans, let us hope rather that he goes into exile.

with accido

quos non tam ulcisci studeo quam sanare sibi ipsos, placare rei publicae,

whom I am not as eager to work vengeance upon as to heal them for themselves, to reconcile them to the republic

with sano; with placo

exponam enim vobis, Quirites, ex quibus generibus hominum istae copiae comparentur;

I will set out to you, citizens, from what categories of men those troops are drawn

with expono

deinde singulis medicinam consili atque orationis meae adferam.

then I shall apply to each the medicine of my strategy and speech

with adfero

magis mihi videntur vota facturi contra rem publicam quam arma laturi.

they seem to me more likely to bring their vows than their weapons against the republic.

with videor

quibus hoc praecipiendum videtur, unum scilicet et idem quod reliquis omnibus,

and it seems best that this information be given to them, the very same information that should be given to all the rest

with praecipio

primum omnium me ipsum vigilare, adesse, providere rei publicae;

first of all, that I myself am on the watch, I am there, I am looking out for the republic

with provideo

… deos denique immortalis huic invicto populo, clarissimo imperio, pulcherrimae urbi contra tantam vim sceleris praesentis auxilium esse laturos.

finally, that against such great criminal violence, the immortal gods are going to bring help to this invincible people, to this most celebrated rule, to this spectacular city

with ferre

non vident id se cupere quod, si adepti sint, fugitivo alicui aut gladiatori concedi sit necesse?

Do they not see that they want what, if they achieve it, would have to be yielded to some deserter or gladiator?

with concedo

quo ex genere iste est Manlius cui nunc Catilina succedit.

Into this category falls that Manlius to whom Catiline is now marching on.

with succedo

hi in tantum aes alienum inciderunt ut, si salvi esse velint, Sulla sit eis ab inferis excitandus:

They have fallen into such a great debt that if they want to be safe, they would have to Sulla rouse Sulla from the underworld.

agent: eis excitandus

tantus enim illorum temporum dolor inustus est civitati ut iam ista non modo homines sed ne pecudes quidem mihi passurae esse videantur.

That time of pain was so great that it was burned into the state so that, certainly in my opinion, not only human beings but not even the cattle are going to allow it.

with inuro; with videor

postremum autem genus est quod proprium Catilinae est

the final category is what is proper to Catiline

with proprius

verum quid sibi isti miseri volunt?

but really what do those poor men want for themselves?

with volo

et primum gladiatori illi confecto et saucio consules imperatoresque vestros opponite;

and first set your consuls and commanders against that worn-out, wounded gladiator

with oppono

iam vero urbes respondebunt Catilinae tumulis silvestribus.

but now the cities will make an answer to the wooded hills of Catiline

with respondeo

mihi ut urbi sine vestro metu ac sine ullo tumultu satis esset praesidi consultum atque provisum est.

I have taken enough care and foresight so that there is sufficient security for the city without your fear and without any disturbance.

agent: mihi consultum atque provisum est; and with satis praesidi

gladiatores, quam sibi ille manum certissimam fore putavit, potestate tamen nostra continebuntur.

the gladiators, the band that he thinks is going to be very loyal to himself, will be held in check by our power.

with certissimus

mea lenitas adhuc si cui solutior visa est, hoc exspectavit ut id quod latebat erumperet.

If my leniency still seems too loose to anyone, it has anticipated that what was lurking would burst forth.

with videor

iam non possum oblivisci meam hanc esse patriam, me horum esse consulem, mihi aut cum his vivendum aut pro his esse moriendum.

I can no longer forget that this is my country, that I am their consul, or that I must live with them or die for them.

agent: mihi aut vivendum aut moriendum esse

nullus est portis custos, nullus insidiator viae:

There is no guard at the gates, no mugger on the road.

with est custos; with est insidiator

quae quidem ego neque mea prudentia neque humanis consiliis fretus polliceor vobis, Quirites, sed multis et non dubiis deorum immortalium significationibus

Which I certainly promise you, citizens, relying neither on my prudence nor on human intelligence, but on the silent and indubitable indications of the immortal gods.

with polliceor






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