Sunday, November 28, 2010

Verbum Hodiernum: NOS

Today's word is the first-person plural personal pronoun, NOS. The nominative and accusative forms are nos, and the dative and ablative forms are nobis. Note also that with the preposition cum the resulting combination is nobiscum, as in the phrase Pax vobiscum.

For the genitive, nostrum is the most common form as you can see in these phrases: nostrum Fortuna, "our Fortune," domus nostrum, "our house." However, when the genitive is being used objectively in relation to a verb or verbal noun, you will find the form nostri; for example, miserere nostri, "have mercy on us."

As you can guess, these genitive forms are actually derived not from the pronoun itself, but from the possessive adjective: noster, nostra, nostrum.

In English, you can see some glimpses of these Latin words, as in the word "paternoster" which comes from the first words of the Lord's Prayer in Latin: Pater noster, qui es in caelis. There is also an English word "nostrum," which is short for the Latin phrase nostrum remedium, and it refers to any kind of quack remedy or home remedy.

Here are some examples of today's word in Latin sayings and proverbs; for more information, see the page at the Scala Sapientiae, which contains notes on some of the proverbs cited below, as well as additional proverbs:

Non mihi, non tibi, sed nobis.

Non nobis, sed omnibus.

Nos iubere volumus, non iuberi.

Frater est amicus quem nobis dedit Natura.

Si Deus pro nobis, quis contra nos?

Nemo enim nostrum sibi vivit.

Omnia vincit amor, et nos cedamus amori.

Hora horis cedit; pereunt sic tempora nobis.

Nos duo turba sumus.

Tempora mutantur, nos et mutamur in illis.

Omnia mutantur, nos et mutamur in illis.

Adhuc aliquis deus respicit nos.

Uterque nostrum idem simul trahit iugum.

Ultima nos omnes efficit hora pares.

Patria est communis omnium nostrum parens.

Non nobis solum nati sumus.

Non nobis nascimur.

Vita est nobis aliena magistra.

Aliena nobis, nostra plus aliis placent.

Quis nostrum sine vitiis est?

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