Robert Grosseteste

On the Properties of Fire

Latin Grammar: Ordinal Numbers

Est et ignis triplex: Alius vitalis et fovens, alius nocivus non tamen plene corrumpens, tertius vero destructivus corrumpens.

It is important to be able to recognize ordinal numbers, which indicate rank, in addition to cardinal numbers, which indicate quantity. Also, the idioms alius... alius (one... another) and alter... alter (the one... the other) can be used in lists where one might expect to find ordinal numbers. Remember that alter can also mean "second" when used by itself. Ordinal numbers are declined like first and second declension adjectives. Translate the following sentences into Latin to practice ordinal numbers.

1. I am the first king. .

2. The one is glowing, the other is burning. .

3. Today, we saw the third omen. .

4. The first person is moral, the second is immoral, the third is impious, and the fourth is godly. .

5. I was the twentieth person who wrote a book about fire. .

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