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Re: LANGUE NATURELLE: Les groupes des verbes en Français (Re: TECH: Official languages of the list)

From:Mark J. Reed <markjreed@...>
Date:Friday, August 20, 2004, 20:19
MJR> Both from Latin "vendere", which was usually encountered in CL via its
MJR> passive form "venire".

RB> I'm not sure what you mean by 'usually encountered in CL via its passive
RB> form "venire"'.

I misinterpreted a statement in my dictionary.  Under vendo, I *thought*
it said "usually passive veneo, q.v.", but it really just said "passive
usually veneo, q.v.", which is a completely different story.  Sigh.

RB> In any case, I think it'd be helpful to make it clear that
RB> the 'passive' you are speaking about is 'vēnīre' (to be sold) with long-e
RB> in the first syllable, and not the far more common 'venīre' (to come) with
RB> short-e in the first syllable.

Yes, indeed, I should have made that clear, since "venire" has survived
into the Romance languages and is therefore much more familiar to most

MJR> Classical Latin had four verb conjugations, seem to have collapsed to
MJR> fewer in the Romance languages.

RB> In Iberian Romance, yes - elsewhere, no.

Yup, here we have another case of Marcos not knowing what he was talking
about, which I admitted in an earlier message.  :)

RB> The Classical system is, more precisely:
RB> 1a. -āre		long-a stems (nearly all traditional 1st conjugation)
RB> 1b. -are	        short-a stems (stare, dare)
RB> 2a. -ēre		long-e stems (the traditional 2nd conjugation)
RB> 2b. -ere	        short-e stems (the traditional 3rd conj. of the 'mitto,
RB> 3a. -īre 	        long-i stems (the traditional 4th conjugation)
RB> 3b. -ere	        short-i stems (the tradition 3rd conj. of the
RB>                     'capio, capere' type)

Interesting way of breaking it down.

RB> What has made the picture confusing in French, Italian and Romanian is
RB> that quite clearly there was much confusion

Ah, so it was the confusion that confused things?  That *is* clear.

RB> In fact the development from VL to the modern
RB> Romance verb groupings is a complicated matter, way beyond the scope of a
RB> single email. There was a great deal of confusion, as endings weakened,
RB> more irregularities created by phonetic developments and subsequent
RB> ironing out of irregularities by analogical remodelling, i.e. real
RB> natlangs behaving like real natlangs  :)

Right.  Weird stuff.  About which I obviously know a great deal less
than other folks on here, so I'll just shut up and go back to reading
my copy of Penny's _History_of_the_Spanish_Language_. :)