previous next

460. In a few cases the Infinitive retains its original meaning of Purpose.

a. The infinitive is used in isolated passages instead of a subjunctive clause after habeō , , ministrō :—

    tantum habeō pollicērī (Fam. 1.5A. 3), so much I have to promise. [Here the more formal construction would be quod pollicear .]
  1. ut Iovī bibere ministrāret (Tusc. 1.65) , to serve Jove with wine (to drink).
  2. merīdiē bibere datō; (Cato R. R. 89), give (to) drink at noonday.

b. Parātus , suētus , and their compounds, and a few other participles (used as adjectives), take the infinitive like the verbs from which they come:—

  1. id quod parātī sunt facere (Quint. 8) , that which they are ready to do.
  2. adsuēfactī superārī (B. G. 6.24) , used to being conquered.
  3. currū succēdere suētī; (Aen. 3.541), used to being harnessed to the chariot
  4. cōpiās bellāre cōnsuētās (B. Afr. 73), forces accustomed to fighting.

Note.--In prose these words more commonly take the Gerund or Gerundive construction (§ 503 ff.) either in the genitive, the dative, or the accusative with ad :—

  1. īnsuētus nāvigandī (B. G. 5.6) , unused to making voyages.
  2. alendīs līberīs suēti (Tac. Ann. 14.27) , accustomed to supporting children.
  3. corpora īnsuēta ad onera portanda (B. C. 1.78) , bodies unused to carry burdens.

c. The poets and early writers often use the infinitive to express purpose when there is no analogy with any prose construction:—

  1. fīlius intrō iit vidēre quid agat (Ter. Hec. 345) , your son has gone in to see what he is doing. [In prose: the supine vīsum .]
  2. nōn ferrō Libycōs populāre Penātīs vēnimus (Aen. 1.527) , we have not come to lay waste with the sword the Libyan homes.
  3. lōrīcam dōnat habēre virō; (id. 5.262), he gives the hero a breastplate to wear. [In prose: habendam .]

Note.--So rarely in prose writers of the classic period.

For the Infinitive used instead of a Substantive Clause of Purpose, see § 457.

For tempus est abīre , see § 504. N. 2.

Peculiar Infinitives

hide References (1 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • J. B. Greenough, Benjamin L. D'Ooge, M. Grant Daniell, Commentary on Caesar's Gallic War, AG BG 2.3
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: