[*] 576. In colloquial usage and in poetry the subject of an In direct Question is often attracted into the main clause as object (Accusative of Anticipation):—
- “nōstī Mārcellum quam tardus sit” (Fam. 8.10.3) , you know how slow Marcellus is. [For nōstī quam tardus sit Mārcellus . Cf. “I know thee who thou art.”]
- Cf. potestne igitur eārum rērum, quā rē futūrae sint, ūlla esse praesēnsiō; (Div. 2.15), can there be, then, any foreknowledge as to those things, why they will occur? [A similar use of the Objective Genitive.]
[*] Note.--In some cases the Object of Anticipation becomes the Subject by a change of voice, and an apparent mixture of relative and interrogative constructions is the result:—
- “ quīdam saepe in parvā pecūniā perspiciuntur quam sint levēs ” (Lael. 63) , it is often seen, in a trifling matter of money, how unprincipled some people are (some people are often seen through, how unprincipled they are).
- “quem ad modum Pompêium oppūgnārent ā mē indicātī sunt ” (Leg. Agr. 1.5) , it has been shown by me in what way they attacked Pompey (they have been shown by me, how they attacked).
- “circumfunduntur hostēs sī quem aditum reperīre possent ” (B. G. 6.37) , the enemy pour round [to see] if they can find entrance.
- “vīsam sī domī est ” (Ter. Haut. 170) , I will go see if he is at home.