I think it is about time I had some sort of standardized format for these posts. Up ’til this point, I have been haphazardly throwing posts together, not particularly having a set layout. I’m thinking that now is as good a time as any to change that, starting with an official daily comic.
This new feature will have absolutely no significance to the content of the post whatsoever, but will hopefully make you smile. Also, I’m incorporating a verse of the day, this will have everything to do with the content of the post. Living everyday with a theme and goal should involve scripture, and I hope this blog will begin to incorporate that goal more substantially.
VERSE OF THE DAY:
Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:
Three words jump out of this passage right off the bat: charity, conscience, and unfeigned. These are big words with big meanings, which brings us to the reason for the name of this post: Latin.
Most people do not realize it, but nearly every major language spoken today can be traced back to Latin or Greek. Spanish, English, French, and Italian are well known for sharing the same roots and many of the same words with each other; that is because they all had a common ancestor: Latin. For this reason as well as many others, it is important for every learned person, especially those whose occupations involve words and phrases, to have at least a base knowledge of Latin.
A rudemintary knowledge of Latin can be of unmeasured help when trying to decide the meanings of words. For instance, the English word peruse is composed of two words, the Latin word per, meaning “many”, and the Latin word use, meaning “times used”. Now, in the world we are familiar with, the word peruse is becoming somewhat archaic and antiquated, so much so that it has lost its meaning. If you have heard or seen it used recently, doubtless it meant “to glance over or browse”. In a sentence: “the man perused his newspaper”, we would take that to mean that he scanned his newspaper briefly.
However, clearly the Latin roots spell the word out to mean many uses, or a detailed examination. Our words and their meanings have become blurred, yet, still we can trace many if not most of our words back to Latin. The words Audio, (to hear), and Video, (to see), are actual Latin words, we have done nothing to them, yet we use them frequently in our English language.
Now, with that rousing introduction let’s start our lesson in Latin.
1. Every Latin word is made up of three key parts, the Antepenult, Penultima, and the Ultima.
2. Each of these three define different attributes of the word; for example: A-mar-e.
The word amare means love, more precisely it means to love, a present active infinitive. The word, like all Latin words, is separated into three sections. The first section, the Ultima–Latin works from back to front– defines the person. The Penultima, or the second section, defines the tense. The third, the Atepenult, defines the aspect of quality of action. To understand part of a word you must first see a conjugation.
The most popular of all Latin conjugations, (meaning the connection between things, in this case, words), is the following conjugation of the root word: Amo.
Amo: I love
Amas: You love
Amat: He, She, or It loves
Amamus: We love
Amaris: You, (plural), love
Amant: They love
As you can see, by changing the end of the word, the meaning changes also; and these endings are universal, they can be moved and placed on any root word and conform its meaning.
Understanding these endings and the conjugation helps build a retention and knowledge of Latin in your mind, however, it is not very applicable by itself unless you wish to study Latin outright.
What is important is roots. From the Latin roots you discern the meaning of any word we now use today that hasn’t been created for crass or flippant usage.
Click here to read an arrival on Greek and Latin root words that gives examples of the usage of these roots in everyday conversation. Though, Greek is as much a basis for our language as Latin, I believe that Latin is a closer translation and therefore easier to deduce the meanings of words based upon its reference.
Well, I hope this has been educational if nothing else, I enjoyed writing it, I hope you enjoyed reading it.
As always, thanks for reading.
—the anonymous novelist