Calling All Classics Masters

I’ve put these together for my students – radically-abbreviated guides to the declensions in Latin and Greek. Any pedants out there who may be inclined to check these for typos or omissions?




  1. This pedant took a very quick look at the Latin cases. It will be 50 years ago next summer that I got Latin O level, so the memories may be incorrect or misleading. However, I did notice the following:

    1. When you’re in the bath, your Latin example precedes the English, but the others are all the opposite way round.

    2. You missed the ending “um” off the list of those which probably aren’t 3rd declension.

    3. When I was a lad, the 3rd declension example we used was “urbs,” and its genitive plural is “urbium” not “urbum.”

    • Thanks. A few of the examples were the wrong way round. I was in a hurry. All now corrected, many thanks. Also, I’ve noticed some typos in the Greek pages. Also corrected.

  2. I have tutored in Latin and I think that the meaning of the cases is best explained in terms of roles in a play. If there is one individual on the stage (e.g. ‘Nero sang’), the nominative case is used. If there are two individuals, the nominative marks the one doing something and accusative marks the one having something done to them gets the accusative (e.g. ‘Aeneas wed Lavinia’). A third and a fourth individual affected less directly are marked by the dative and the ablative (e.g. ‘Labienus sent the captives to Caesar with an armed guard’). Genitive is, obviously, possession, but in fact any relationship between two individuals not brought about by the verb (e.g. the walls of Rome), and vocative is used with a second person verb or to address the entire sentence to someone otherwise not mentioned in it. The use of the cases with prepositions follows fairly naturally from this (note the relationship between e.g. ‘Sulla ad Romam venit’ and ‘Sulla Romam advenit’.

    • I find that keeping things as short as possible is the way to get results. We are dealing with the electronic generation. They can put up with hardship, not with tedium. I notice, by the way, that I left the smooth breathings off the vocative case in the Greek articles. More typing….

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