Learning the Second Declension: -US/-R words

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Latin nouns have case-endings that make them like little phrases rather than like simple individual words. After you have studied the full chart of the declension, practice perceiving the ending-ambiguities immediately, and instead of thinking of the case-names (e.g. dative, ablative, etc.), give the full meanings as conventionalized here. This chart shows you which endings are unambiguous (have only one case as a possibility), and which are doubly-ambiguous.




Full Meaning



number (s)



(1) of the number
(2) numbers (s)

note plural


(1) to / for the number
(2) by means of [or by] the number



number (o)



of the numbers

note plural


(1) to / for the numbers
(2) by means of [or by] the numbers

note plural
note plural


numbers (o)

note plural




Note: These ways of indicating the meanings of the words are only conventions: determining meaning in a sentence is more complex than substituting simple formulae like these. The purpose of this exercise is to get you into the habit of noticing and distinguishing and registering different inflected forms automatically and effortlessly. To achieve the necessary speed and ease of understanding, you should practice these exercises until you recognize the full meanings without having to pause and recall the declension-table.

Be aware that in the ablative case, if the noun refers to a person rather than a thing, then the noun is made the object of the preposition a or ab: a puerô does not mean "by means of the boy" but [something was done] "by the boy."

Give the full meaning of each word-form or phrase in the practice-exercises below, following the conventions given above. N.B.: English-to-Latin exercises are found below the Latin-to-English ones.




1. amîcôrum

2. puerum

3. populus

4. fîliô

5. amîcî

6. puerôs

7. populum

8. ager

9. populîs

10. agrî

11. fîliîs

12. amîcum

13. populô

14. amîcus

15. puerî

16. fîlius

17. fîliôrum

18. populôs

19. puer

20. fîliî

21. numerî

22. fîliôs

23. amîcô

24. puerôrum

25. puerô

26. fîlium

27. populî

28. numerum

29. agrôrum

30. agrîs

31. amîcîs

32. agrô

33. numerîs

34. puerîs

35. agrôs

36. numerôrum

37. amîcôs

38. agrum

39. numerôs

40. numerô

41. populôrum

42. numerus

Back to full declension chart.

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1. field (s)

2. by the son

3. men (o)

4. to / for the boys

5. by the friend (m)

6. friend (m) (s)

7. to / for the peoples

8. by the number

9. of the field

10. of the boys

11. boys (o)

12. by the boys

13. of the friends (m)

14. to / for the number

15. son (s)

16. by the people

17. to / for the numbers

18. of the friend (m)

19. to / for the men

20. peoples (o)

21. number (s)

22. to / for the boy

23. by the boy

24. to / for the friend (m)

25. of the son

26. numbers (o)

27. by the men

28. people (s)

29. by the man

30. of the men

31. of the number

32. boy (s)

33. sons (o)

34. by the fields

35. friend (m) (o)

36. to / for the field

37. of the people

38. man (s)

39. by the friends (m)

40. field (o)

41. friends (m) (o)

42. son (o)

43. fields (s)

44. of the boy

45. by the sons

46. men (s)

47. to / for the people

48. fields (o)

49. of the peoples

50. number (o)

51. by the field

52. friends (m) (s)

53. by the numbers

54. boys (s)

55. to / for the man

56. of the man

57. of the numbers

58. man (o)

59. people (o)

60. sons (s)

61. by the peoples

62. peoples (s)

63. of the fields

64. of the sons

65. to / for the son

66. boy (o)

67. numbers (s)

68. to / for the friends (m)

69. to / for the fields

70. to / for the sons

Back to full declension chart.



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Latin Teaching Materials at Saint Louis University: © Claude Pavur 1997 - 2009.  This material is being made freely available for non-commercial educational use.