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vĕl ,
I.conj. and adv. old imv. of volo prop., will, choose, take your choice; hence,
I. As disjunctive conjunction, to introduce an alternative as a matter of choice or preference, or as not affecting the principal assertion (while aut introduces an absolute or essential opposition; cf. Madv. Gr. § 436; Zumpt, Gr. § 339; Fischer, Gr. § 383).
A. Singly.
1. In gen., or (if you will), or else, or (at your pleasure), or (at least), or (it is indifferent), or (what is the same thing), etc.: “dic igitur me passerculum ... haedillum me tuom dic esse vel vitellum,Plaut. As. 3, 3, 77: viginti minis? Ba. Utrum vis, vel quater quinis minis, id. Ps. 1, 3, 111: “lege vel tabellas redde,id. ib. 1, 1, 29: “in solem ponito vel sine sale in defrutum condito,Cato, R. R. 7: orabant (sc. Ubii), ut sibi auxilium ferret ... vel ... exercitum modo Rhenum transportaret, or at least, i. e. or, if he preferred it, Caes. B. G. 4, 16: “ejusmodi conjunctionem tectorum oppidum vel urbem appellaverunt,Cic. Rep. 1, 26, 41: “in unius voluntate vel moribus,id. ib. 2, 28, 51: “in unā urbe vel in hac ipsā,id. ib. 3, 10, 17: “constituere vel conservare,id. ib. 2, 38, 64: “in ardore caelesti, qui aether vel caelum nominatur,id. N. D. 2, 15, 41: “transfer idem ad modestiam vel temperantiam,id. Fin. 2, 19, 60; cf. Madv. ad id. ib. 2, 25, 81: “unum illud extimescebam, ne quid turpiter facerem, vel dicam, jam effecissem,id. Att. 9, 7, 1: haec neque confirmare argumentis neque refellere in animo est; “ex ingenio suo quisque demat vel addat fidem,Tac. G. 3.—
2. Esp.
d. = aut, or else.
(α). With an alternative necessary consequence: “id autem nec nasci potest nec mori, vel concidat omne caelum omnisque natura consistat necesse est,Cic. Tusc. 1, 23, 54 Tischer ad loc.: “vel tu ne faceres tale in adulescentiā,Plaut. Ps. 1, 5, 22.—
B. As co-ordinate.
1. Vel ... vel, either ... or, be it ... or; in gen. (class.; but where the alternatives are necessary and exclusive, that is, where one must be right and the other wrong, aut ... aut is used; v. infra, and cf. Madv. ad Cic. Fin. 4, 11, 27): sed hic numquis adest? Pa. Vel adest vel non, i. e. just as you please, Plaut. Mil. 4, 2, 28 Brix ad loc.: “paucis me misit ad eam ... vel ut ducentos Philippos reddat aureos, vel ut hinc eat secum,id. Bacch. 4, 1, 18 sq.: “ubi illic biberit, vel servato meum modum vel ego dabo,id. Stich. 5, 4, 37: “vel tu me vende, vel face quod tibi lubet,id. Pers. 3, 1, 70: “nunc quamobrem huc sum missa, amabo, vel tu mihi ajas, vel neges,id. Rud. 2, 4, 14; cf. id. ib. 5, 2, 44: “Allobrogibus sese vel persuasuros ... existimabant, vel vi coacturos, ut, etc.,Caes. B. G. 1, 6: “ut (Romani) vel sibi agros attribuant vel patiantur eos tenere, etc.,id. ib. 4, 7: “vel sumptuosae vel desidiosae illecebrae,Cic. Rep. 2, 4, 8: “in omni vel officio vel sermone sollers,id. ib. 2, 21, 37: “maximum virtutis vel documentum, vel officium,id. ib. 1, 20, 33: “pace vel Quirini vel Romuli dixerim,id. Off. 3, 10, 42: “erant quaestiones vel de caede vel de vi,id. Mil. 5, 13; 7, 20; id. Leg. 3, 14, 32; id. Lig. 6, 17; id. Deiot. 1, 1; 5, 13; id. Brut. 69, 242: “animus vel bello vel paci paratus,Liv. 1, 1, 8: “hunc ordinem ex censu descripsit vel paci decorum vel bello,id. 1, 42, 5: Etruriam et Samnium provincias esse; “utram mallet eligeret: suo exercitu se vel in Etruriā vel in Samnio rem gesturum,id. 10, 19, 9: “gladioque ruptis omnibus loris, oraculi sortem vel elusit vel implevit,Curt. 3, 1, 18: “nihil illo fuisset excellentius vel in vitiis vel in virtutibus,Nep. Alcib. 1, 1; 2, 1; id. Milt. 3, 4.—
2. Esp.
a. With weakened disjunctive force (nearly = et ... et). quemadmodum ille vel Athenis vel Rhodi se doctissimorum hominum sermonibus dedisset, Cic. de Or. 2, 1, 3: “multos sine ratione, sine litteris, quā vel inpudentia vel fames duxit, ruentes,Quint. 2, 20, 2: “affectus vel illos mites vel hos concitatos in suā potestate habuisse,id. 10, 1, 48: eadem quaestio potest eundem vel accusatorem facere vel reum, id. 3, 6, 18: et nundina vetera ex ordine instituit, vel dies vel tempora, Lampr Alex. Sev. 43: pestilentia tanta exstiterat vel Romae, vel Achaicis urbibus, ut, etc., Treb. Gall. 5.—
c. The second (or last) vel strengthened,
(γ). By omnino: haec vel ad odium, vel ad misericordiam, vel omnino ad animos judicum movendos ex iis quae sunt ante posita, sumentur (or in general), Cic. Part. Or. 36, 128.—
d. Rarely after a negative = neque, nor: “neque satis Bruto ... vel tribunis militum constabat, quid agerent,Caes. B. G. 3, 14.—
e. In irregular construction, without the second vel: “utrumque est in his, quod ab hoc oratore abhorreat: vel quod omnis, qui sapientes non sint, insanos esse dicunt ... accedit quod, etc.,Cic. de Or. 3, 18, 65; id. Att. 11, 7, 5; cf. esp. Lucr. 5, 383 sqq. Munro ad loc. —
f. Vel ... vel = aut ... aut: “habere ea, quae secundum naturam sint, vel omnia vel plurima et maxima,” i. e. so nearly all that the difference is unimportant, Cic. Fin. 4, 11, 27; cf. “Madv. ad loc.: cum bonā quidem spe, ut ait idem, vel vincendi vel in libertate moriendi,id. Att. 7, 9, 4.—For vel ... vel, in a subordinate alternative after aut, v. the examples under I. B. 1. b. supra.—
II. As intens. particle (prop. ellipt., implying an alternative the first member of which is omitted, something else or even this, etc.).
A. In gen., or even, if you will, or indeed, or ... itself, even, assuredly, certainly.
2. With adjj.: Ch. Pax, te tribus verbis volo. Sy. Vel trecentis, Plaut. Trin. 4, 2, 122: Ca. Ut opperiare hos sex dies saltem modo ... Ba. Animo bono es. Vel sex mensis opperibor, id. Ps. 1, 3, 89; cf.: jam hercle vel ducentae minae, id. ib. 1, 3, 68; “1, 3, 111: hoc ascensu vel tres armati quamlibet multitudinem arcuerint,Liv. 9, 24, 7: Ph. Dane suavium? Di. Immo vel decem, Plaut. Truc. 2, 4, 22: “ego illum eunuchum, si opus sit, vel sobrius,Ter. Eun. 3, 2, 26: “si sit opus, vel totum triduom,id. ib. 2, 1, 17: “haec sunt omnia ingenii vel mediocris,Cic. de Or. 2, 27, 119.—
3. With verbs: namque edepol quamvis desubito vel cadus vorti potest, may even be turned over, i. e. will be empty, Plaut. Stich. 5, 4, 39: “ubi ego hinc abiero, vel occidito,if you will, even, Ter. Phorm. 1, 2, 93: “per me vel stertas licet, inquit Carneades, non modo quiescas,Cic. Ac. 2, 29, 93: “ut ipsis sententiis, quibus proluserunt, vel pugnare possint,id. de Or. 2, 80, 325: “cum vel abundare debeam, cogor mutuari,id. Att. 15 15, 3—
B. With superlatives, to denote the highest possible degree, the very; the utmost; the most...possible.
C. In adding an instance implying that other instances might be mentioned at will, or this one; for instance, for example, as for example, in particular: “Per pol quam paucos reperias Fideles amatores ... Vel hic Pamphilus jurabat quotiens Bacchidi, etc.,Ter. Hec. 1, 1, 3: “vel heri in vino quam inmodestus fuisti,id. Heaut. 3, 3, 7: nullast tam facilis res quin difficilis siet Quom invitus facias; “vel me haec deambulatio ... ad languorum dedit,id. ib. 4, 6, 1: “sed suavis accipio litteras, vel quas proxime acceperam, quam prudentis!Cic. Fam. 2, 13, 1: “cujus innumerabilia sunt exempla, vel Appii majoris illius, qui, etc.,id. de Or. 2, 70, 284.—
D. Concessive.
1. With superlatives, perhaps: “adulescens vel potentissimus nostrae civitatis,Cic. Rosc. A. 2, 6: “domus vel optima Messanae, notissima quidem certe,the best known, at any rate, if not the finest, Cic. Verr. 2, 4, 2, § 3.—
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