Verbs Found Chiefly In the Imperative

A few verbs (some of which you’re already familiar with) appear chiefly in the imperative, and only rarely in other forms.

  • salvē, salvēte, salvētō : hail! [the forms salvēre, salveō, salvētis and salvēbis are also found.]
  • avē/havē, avēte, avētō : hail! or farewell! [the form avēre is also found.]
  • cedo, cedite/cette : hand it over! tell! (not cēdocedo is a second person imperative; cēdo is a first person indicative)
  • apage : begone! (cf. Gk. ἄπαγε)

A Lewis and Short search suggests that the latter two (quite reasonably given their Greek roots) are found principally in Roman comedy.

The Essential AG: 206g

Have Some More

My curiosity about habeō, habēre, habuī, habitum led me to Lewis and Short. I’ll share some of the less intuitive uses I found there.

  • habēre in metū = to fear
  • habēre quemquam can also refer to a sense of esteem. That is, how you ‘hold’ someone in your mind, and how you think of them.
  • habēre + infinitive, in addition to ‘I must do x‘ could also mean ‘I am able to do x,’ much like the Greek ἔχω + infinitive
  • habēre sē benē = to be well
  • habēre sibi/sēcum aliquid = to keep something to oneself
  • habēre without a direct object = to dwell [eum domī advēnimus, quō nunc habet — we went to visit him at the house where he now lives]
  • habēre in animō = to have in mind to, to be inclined to
  • the future imperative, habētō means ‘consider’ or ‘understand’ with a present sense [sīc habētō, mī amīce–consider it this way, friend]

To Have and Holding, For as Long as You Both Shall Live

In this post, I’d like to differentiate between the three ways that habeō takes a direct object: (a) an accusative, (b) an accusative perfect participle, and (c) an infinitive.

Habeō takes an accusative direct object in the sense of ‘possessing’ that object.

  • I have three sons: trēs fīliōs habeō.
  • She held the scepter: sceptrum habēbat.

Habeō with the perfect participle bears the same sense as ‘habēbat‘ above: possession extended over a period of time.

  • They are holding him in the prison: eum in carcere habent. (right now)
  • They are holding him in prison: eum captātum in carcere habent. (continuous status of incarceration)
  • They have him as a witness: eum teste habent. (at this moment).
  • They have him as a witness: eum testātum habent. (for now, but also for when they might need him)

Habeō with an infinitive completes a construction of purpose.

  • I have much to promise: multum habeō pollicērī.
  • You have work to do: labōrem habēs facere.
  • You must do the work: labōrem habēs facere. (cf. Spanish tener que)

The Essential AG: 460a, 497b