previous next

Chapter VII

Verbal Adjectives in -τέος and -τέον

920. The verbal in -τέος is used in both a personal and an impersonal construction.

921. In the personal construction, the verbal is always passive in sense. It expresses necessity (like the Latin participle in -dus and agrees with its subject in case. This construction is, of course, restricted to transitive verbs. E.g.

922. The substantive denoting the agent is here in the dative. εἰμί is often omitted.

923. In the impersonal construction (which is the more common), the verbal is in the neuter of the nominative singular (sometimes plural), with ἐστί expressed or understood. The expression is equivalent to δεῖ, (one) must, with the infinitive active or middle of the verb to which the verbal belongs.

This contruction is practically active in sense, and allows transitive verbals to have an object in the same case which would follow their verbs. The agent is generally expressed by the dative, sometimes by the accusative. E.g.

So SOPH. Ant. 678

It will be seen that this construction admits verbals of both transitive and intransitive verbs.

924. The Latin participle in -dus is used in the same personal construction as the Greek verbal in -τέος; as epistula scribenda est, ἐπιστόλη γραπτέα ἐστίν, a letter must be written.

The impersonal construction is found in Latin, but generally only with verbs which do not take an object accusative, as Eundum est tibi (ἰτέον ἐστί σοι), — Moriendum est omnibus. — Bello utendum est nobis (τῷ πολέμῳ χρηστέον ἐστὶν ἡμῖν), we must employ war See Madvig's Latin Grammar, § 421.

Occasionally the earlier Latin uses even the object accusative, like the Greek, as “Aeternas quoniam poenas in morte timendum est,LUCR. i.112

925. A sentence sometimes begins with an impersonal verbal in -τέον and is continued with an infinitive, the latter depending on δεῖ implied in the verbal. E.g.

Πανταχοῦ ποιητέον ἄν κελεύῃ πόλις καὶ πατρὶς, πείθειν αὐτήν.PLAT. Crit. 51 B.

926. The dative and the accusative of the agent are both allowed with the verbal in -τέον (or -τέα), although the equivalent δεῖ with the infinitive has only the accusative. Thus we can say τοῦτο ἡμῖν ποιητέον or τοῦτο ἡμᾶς ποιητέον, but only τοῦτο ἡμᾶς δεῖ ποιεῖν.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide References (20 total)
  • Cross-references from this page (20):
    • Aristophanes, Lysistrata, 450
    • Demosthenes, Olynthiac 1, 17
    • Euripides, Orestes, 769
    • Herodotus, Histories, 7.168
    • Plato, Republic, 561c
    • Plato, Republic, 595c
    • Plato, Crito, 49a
    • Plato, Crito, 51b
    • Plato, Phaedo, 66e
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 678
    • Sophocles, Philoctetes, 994
    • Thucydides, Histories, 1.86
    • Thucydides, Histories, 6.25
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.65
    • Xenophon, Memorabilia, 3.6.3
    • Xenophon, Memorabilia, 1.7.2
    • Xenophon, Memorabilia, 3.11.1
    • Thucydides, Histories, 6.50
    • Lucretius, De Rerum Natura, 1.112
    • Thucydides, Histories, 1.88
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: