Third Declension Endings:

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Explain the ideas of case and declension.


Case Name
and Typical Meaning / Use




The "subject case": the subject is the word found by asking WHO or WHAT before the verb.

[various endings]


tempus, tempora

Tempus fugit.
  Time flees.

quoniam haec erant tempora
  Since these were the times.


The "possession case": The genitive word corresponds to the word that takes an apostrophe in English. If (A) is in the genitive, (A) possesses something else (B), with the emphasis falling on (B), so that (A) is somewhat like a modifier of (B): in student's book (= discipuli liber), the possession-word qualifies the meaning of the noun book.



temporis, temporum

punctum temporis
  point of time

ordo temporum
 The  order of the seasons


The "indirect object case": the indirect object is found by asking TO / FOR WHOM? or TO / FOR WHAT? after the verb. Certain verbs govern the dative.


temporî, temporibus

Cede tempori.
  Yield to the time.

Temporibus tu nimis servîs.
  You serve the times too much.


The "direct object case": the direct object is usually found by asking WHO or WHAT after an action-verb whose action has a receiver. "We hold these truths." The accusative is also used after certain prepositions.



tempus,  tempora

in aliud tempus
   for another time. 

Dûcês tempora culpant.
  The leaders are blaming the times.


The "by-with-from case": Certain prepositions and certain verbs govern objects in this case. Used alone it can have an adverbial meaning, for example, to indicate by what means something is done.



tempore, temporibus

ex tempore dixit.
  He spoke on the spur of the moment.

temporibus meîs três librôs scrîpsî.
  I wrote three books about my times.

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