Again, I’ve grown curious about the Locative, so now that I’ve discussed how to form it, I’d like to pick through all the ways to use it. A&G have no single section on the case; they drizzle it throughout the grammar.
Where’d It Come From?
Here’s a story of three cases: there were originally the ablative (case from where), the instrumental (case how or by what) and the locative (case whereat).
- The instrumental and the locative were eventually absorbed, leaving the ablative to denote both instrument and location
- However, there are still a few handfuls of words which retain an archaic locative
- Compare it to the way that certain English words (who/whom, he/his/him) still take case endings, despite the near non-existence of visible cases within modern English
Things look trickier with the dative cause. Some argue that dative is directly related to or descended from the locative, where it originally noted the place to which. I’m no master of historical Latin linguistics, so this is all the research I’m going to bother with.
- Suffice it to say: the locative has a historical relationship with the dative and the ablative
The following adverbs are all archaic locatives: ubi, where; hīc, here; ibi, there; illī, there; peregrī, abroad; prīdiē, yesterday; hōdiē, today; postrīdiē, tomorrow; perendiē, the day after tomorrow
Locative in Apposition
The locative may be placed in apposition to an ablative
- They halted at Alba, a fortified town: Albae cōnstitērunt, in urbe mūnītā.
Mind and Soul
The archaic animī are mentis are common locatives.
- Antipho tortures my mind: Antiphō mē excruciat animī.
- She is in suspense: animī pendet.
- My mind deceives me: mē animī fallit.
- I was out of my mind: dēsipiēbam mentis.
- He is sound of mind and heart: sānus mentis et animī est.
Exhausitve List of Ablative
A&G appears to offer an exhaustive list of all remaining locatives in section 427.3. However, elsewhere they imply that you could make a locative of any word using the basic rules of formation. I don’t know whether Romans did or did not freely form the locative where they needed it (for place names). I’m not sure A&G do either.
Rōmae, at Rome; Rhodī, at Rhodes; Samī, at Samos; Tīburī/Tībure, at the Tibur; Philippīs, at Philippi; domī/domuī, at home; Athēnīs, at Athens; Lānuvī, at Lanuvium; Cyprī, at Cyprus; Cūribus, at Cures; Capreīs, at Capri; rūrī, in the country; bellī, at war; mīlitae, at war; humī, on the ground; vesperī/vespere, in the evening; forīs, outdoors, animī, in the soul, mentis, in the mind; temperī, at a time; herī/here, yesterday; īnfēlīcī arborī, on the barren tree; terrā marīque, by land and sea
If the list is short a few words, these may be the locative adverbs mentioned above.
But… that’s it? I suppose if you wrote these out five times you would have an entire case memorized.
The Essential AG: (again, scattered) 215.5; 282d; 358; 398; 421; 426.3; 427a
Famous Phrase: nec mē animī fallit quam sint obscūra [nor am I deceived by how dark it is]
Lucretius, Dē Rērum Natūrā 1.922
(he’s discussing the intimidating depth of the universe–a fear which study overcomes)