Albertus Magnus

On Veins and Arteries

Latin Grammar: The Infinitive

Unde Philosophus in xiv huius dicit, quod omnis operatio corporalis fit mediante corde et influentia cordis ad alias partes -- sentire est operatio corporalis et vivere -- ergo fit per medium corporale, et istud medium est arteria, quae plena est spiritu et calore naturali.

The infinitive can sometimes function as a noun, even though it is one of a verb's principal parts. We see that in the above Latin line from this passage, which is translated "To feel and to love is the operation of the body." The infinitives can also be translated as continuous, i.e. "feeling" and "living." Here the two infinitives are functioning as the subjects of the sentence. When this happens, the infinitives are treated as neuter, and their predicate must also be neuter. There are numerous and more complicated usages of the infinitive, so in this exercise we will only practice using them as subjects.

Translate the following sentences from English to Latin, using the verbs listed in their first-person forms for each question:

1. Seeing is believing (credo)

2. Thinking (puto) is attractive

3. Fighting (pugno) is dangerous

4. To have (habeo) a dog is to love a dog

5. To breathe (spiro) is to live

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