Barszczow A. N. (orpheus_samhain) wrote in linguaphiles,
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LATIN: caute or cautim? (adverb)

I'd like to ask about the adverb 'cautiously' in Latin.

My schoolbook mini-dictionary says that 'caute' means 'cautiously'. But big dictionaries don't mention 'caute' (it's just a form of 'caveo'), and say that 'cautim' is 'cautiously', and that it's not comparable.

I've found here: http://www.latin-dictionary.net/definition/8705/caute-cautius-cautissime a comparative and superlative form of 'caute'.

Could someone clarify it for me? Is 'caute' a correct form/does not exist? Is 'caute' (if it exists) and 'cautim' interchangeable? Is there any difference in use? How come that an adverb may not form comparable forms, when logically it's (at least for me) possible?

It all stems from this sentence, but is not closely related to it: Paulo post leo per silvam praedam parum caute investigans, in rete, quod venatores tetenderunt, incidit.

Thank you!
Tags: latin
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  • 3 comments

lysimache

June 22 2014, 17:22:11 UTC 2 months ago

cautē is absolutely listed in Lewis&Short (s.v. caveō). It is the standard adverb of cautus and is used by (inter alios) Cicero.

cautim is securely attested only in a few locations and is a synonym for cautē. I would never use this form, therefore.

I used Perseus -- http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/ -- to answer your question (in addition to gut feeling, obvs). That's really the best place to start checking. Had I not found an answer there, I would've checked the OLD (but that's only in paper, so much more work).

Finally, not everything that's logically possible to be expressed has actually been expressed by Latin authors, which is the authority upon which the standard dictionaries/references are based.

orpheus_samhain

June 23 2014, 10:00:08 UTC 2 months ago

Thank you. So when they say that it's not comparable it only means that the comparable forms were not used by the ancient authors, yes? And what's 'the OLD'?

orpheus_samhain

June 23 2014, 12:27:38 UTC 2 months ago

And maybe you happen to know: my teacher told us that there is a 'sondel' dictionary on-line and that it's reliable. I don't think I've heard it right, even though I asked twice, because when I tried to google it, I came up with nothing.