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Discovering Ancient Greek and Latin
Discovering Ancient Greek and Latin

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3.5 The second declension

Table 7 below shows the genitive, dative and ablative case endings of the second declension, using the noun populus (‘people’) as an example. Again, we will concentrate on the singular endings. Most nouns ending in -us belong to the second declension. This group includes a large number of male praenōmina (forenames) such as Gāius, Lūcius and Marcus.

Table 7 Second declension nouns
caseendingpopulus
singular
genitivepopulī
dativepopulō
ablativepopulō

Activity 18

a) What is the genitive singular of the second declension noun Antōnius?

a. 

Antōnius


b. 

Antōniī


c. 

Antōniō


The correct answer is b.

b) The name Marcus is a second declension noun. In what case is Marcō?

a. 

genitive


b. 

dative


c. 

ablative


d. 

either dative or ablative


The correct answer is d.

d. 

The context would help you decide which case.


Practice

Activity 19

Which Latin word could be used to translate the English word in bold?

1. Antony’s father

a. 

Antōnius


b. 

Antōniī


c. 

Antōniō


The correct answer is b.

b. 

Yes, the genitive case is required.


2. Antonius presented a gift to Cleopatra

a. 

Cleopatra


b. 

Cleopatrae


c. 

Cleopatrā


The correct answer is b.

b. 

Yes, the dative case is required.


Harold was struck by an arrow

a. 

sagitta


b. 

sagittae


c. 

sagittā


The correct answer is c.

c. 

Yes, the ablative case is required.