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507. The Ablative of the Gerund and Gerundive is used (1) to express manner,1 means, cause, etc.; (2) after Comparatives; and (3) after the propositions ab , , ex , in, and (rarely) prō :—
  1. (1) “multa pollicendō persuādet(Iug. 46) , he persuades by large promises.
  2. Latīnē loquendō cuivīs pār (Brut. 128) , equal to any man in speaking Latin.
  3. hīs ipsīs legendīs (Cat. M. 21) , by reading these very things.
  4. obscūram atque humilem conciendō ad multitūdinem (Liv. 1.8) , calling to them a mean and obscure multitude.
  5. (2) “nūllum officium referendā grātiā magis necessārium est(Off. 1.47) , no duty is more important than repaying favors.
  6. (3) “ in gerendā versārī(Cat. M. 17) , to be employed in conducting affairs.

Note 1.--The Ablative of the Gerund and Gerundive is also very rarely used with verbs and adjectives: as, “nec continuandō abstitit magistrātū(Liv. 9.34) , he did not desist from continuing his magistracy.

Note 2.--The ablative of the gerund rarely takes a direct object in classic prose.

1 In this use the ablative of the gerund is, in later writers nearly, and in mediæval writers entirely, equivalent to a present participle: as,—cum ūnā diērum FLENDŌ sēdisset, quīdam mīles generōsus iūxtā eam EQUITANDŌ vēnit (Gesta Romanorum, 66 [58]), as one day she sat weeping, a certain knight came riding by (compare § 507, fourth example). Hence come the Italian and Spanish forms of the present participle (as mandando , esperando), the true participial form becoming an adjective in those languages.

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  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kittredge, Select Orations of Cicero, Allen and Greenough's Edition., AG Cic. 2.5
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