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282. A noun used to describe another, and standing in the same part of the sentence with the noun described, is called an Appositive, and is said to be in apposition:
  1. externus timor, maximum concordiae vinculum, iungēbat animōs (Liv. 2.39) , fear of the foreigner, the chief bond of harmony, united their hearts. [Here the appositive belongs to the subject.]
  2. quattuor hīc prīmum ōmen equōs vīdī; (Aen. 3.537), I saw here four horses, the first omen. [Here both nouns are in the predicate.]
    litterās Graecās senex didicī; (Cat. M. 26), I learned Greek when an old man. [Here senex , though in apposition with the subject of didicī , really states something further: viz., the time, condition, etc., of the act (Predicate Apposition).]

a. Words expressing parts may be in apposition with a word including the parts, or vice versa (Partitive Apposition):—

  1. Nec P. Popilius neque Q. Metellus, clārissimī virī atque amplissimī, vim tribūnīciam sustinēre potuērunt (Clu. 95) , neither Publius Popilius nor Quintus Metellus, [both of them] distinguished and honorable men, could withstand the power of the tribunes.
  2. Gnaeus et Pūblius Scīpiōnēs, Cneius and Publius Scipio (the Scipios).

b. An Adjective may be used as an appositive:—

  1. ea Sex. Rōscium inopem recēpit (Rosc. Am. 27) , she received Sextus Roscius in his poverty (needy).

c. An appositive generally agrees with its noun in Gender and Number when it can:—

  1. sequuntur nātūram, optimam ducem (Lael. 19) , they follow nature, the best guide.
  2. omnium doctrīnārum inventrīcēs Athēnās (De Or. 1.13) , Athens, discoverer of all learning.

Note.--But such agreement is often impossible: as,ōlim truncus eram fīculnus, inūtile “līgnum(Hor. S. 1.8.1) , I once was a fig-tree trunk, a useless log.

d. A common noun in apposition with a Locative (§ 427) is put in the Ablative, with or without the preposition in:—

  1. Antiochīae, celebrī quondam urbe (Arch. 4) , at Antioch, once a famous city.
  2. Albae cōnstitērunt, in urbe mūnītā; (Phil. 4.6), they halted at Alba, a fortified town.

For a Genitive in apposition with a Possessive Pronoun or an Adjective, see § 302. 6

For the so-called Appositional Genitive, see § 343. d.

For the construction with nōmen est , see § 373. a.

hide References (4 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (3):
    • J. B. Greenough, Benjamin L. D'Ooge, M. Grant Daniell, Commentary on Caesar's Gallic War, AG BG 7.69
    • J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kittredge, Select Orations of Cicero, Allen and Greenough's Edition., AG Cic. 4
    • J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kittredge, Select Orations of Cicero, Allen and Greenough's Edition., AG Cic. pos=4.4
  • Cross-references to this page (1):
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