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(E. Morris: On the Sentence-Question in Plautus and Terence. Baltimore, 1890.)

-ne, which Plautus (but seldom Terence) sometimes puts late in the sentence, e.g. Curc. 17et heri cenavistine?”, often plays the part of nonne, e.g.

It is often omitted in colloquial Latin, e.g. rogas? (see Abraham ‘Studia Plautina,’ p. 233); and since scribes had a habit of ignoring a final n, it is often hard to tell whether e.g. novisti or novistin was what Plautus wrote. Apparently vin is appropriate to the beginning, vis to the middle of a sentence; and the same may hold of novistin and novisti, etc. (but cf. Curc. 18, etc.).

Nonne is not common in Plautus, but is undoubtedly in use, e.g. Amph. 407non loquor?, non vigilo? nonne hic homo modo me pugnis contudit?” (For a full list of examples, see Schrader: de particularum ‘-ne,’ ‘anne,’ ‘nonneapud Plautum prosodia. Strasburg, 1885, pp. 42 sqq.) It is only found before a word beginning with a Vowel (i.e. it is never a disyllable in Prosody), while non (as in the line just quoted) takes its place before an initial consonant. But we are not justified in writing non in these cases as nonn (like tun, egon, hicin, etc.), for non is often found before an initial vowel. The relation of nonne to non is precisely that of anne (before initial vowel only) to an (before initial cons. or vow., e.g. ăn est)1. The form enlarged by the addition of -ne pleased the ear of Plautus when a vowel followed, but he did not choose to give it trochaic scansion (cf. hisce, illisce before vowel, his, illis before consonant or vowel).

Num (cf. numquid) and numnam, e.g.

apparently do not necessarily expect a Negative answer, e.g. Bacch. 1110 Ter. Haut. 429. Num non occurs in the phrase num non vis (Aul. 161, Most. 336, Poen. 1079). The existence of numne (see Lease, Classical Review, xi, 348) in the Dramatists' Latin is doubtful. Numquid aliud me vis?, usually shortened to numquid me vis? or numquid vis? or numquid aliud? was the formula of polite leave-taking (cf. Donatus' note on Ter. Eun. II. iii. 50: “recte abituri, ne id dure facerent, ‘numquid vis?’ dicebant iis quibuscum constitissent”).

An does not necessarily express an alternative question in Old Latin e.g. Pseud. 309A. te vivum vellem. B. eho! an iam mortuust?” But the alternative use is also frequent, e.g.

The Neuter of ecquis often plays the part of an Interrogative Conjunction in Plautus, e.g. ecquid audis? And the same is true of numquid, satin -- e.g. Trin. 925; cf.

-- etiam and similar words. We may add ēn of en umquam, e.g. Trin. 589o pater, enumquam aspiciam te?” (see below, IX). On the Indirect Interrogatives utrum, necne, annon, see 2 s.vv.

1 Cf. iam and iamne in Pomponius 157 R. iamne abierunt? “iam non tundunt? iamne ego in tuto satis?” If the theory mentioned above (2) be right, that an (e.g. an sum?, ăn est?) had originally the form anne, then we should be justified in regarding non in questions as a mere apocopated form of nonne. Still Plautus seems so often to append or withhold -ne at caprice (e.g. iam and iamne) that it seems more likely that non in questions and nonne are two distinct forms.

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