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use of "proprius" and "propriē" with "meus" (?)

Michael Zwingli

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Hi, all.

I am specifically wondering if either proprius or its derivative propriē were ever used in combination with meus as a type of 'strengthener', especially since the sense of proprius as "personal, private, individual, exclusive" or "characteristic, particular, special" and propriē as providing the coordinate adverbial senses, would seem to act thusly in conjunction with meus. Of course, proprius meus would mean something like "my own individual/particular" as an adjectival phrase, and propriē meus would mean "my own individually/characteristically" as part of a verbal clause. Can anyone think of any examples of this from their reading? Perhaps another way of phrasing the same question, is to ask "does proprius/propriē suggest whose ownership is indicated by context, or does it require the determiner/possessive pronoun as an adjunct?" Thank you much if you can help...
 
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Pacifica

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I don't think I've ever encountered the expression proprie meus. It's a theoretically possible one, but it would mean "properly mine" (as opposed to figuratively mine or mine by borrowing or so). If the meaning you want to convey is "my own", proprie meus isn't the way to go.

I've seen proprius in conjunction with possessives to mean "one's (my, your, his, etc.) own" in medieval Latin, but it's unusual in classical Latin. In classical Latin, that kind of meaning is usually expressed in one of these ways:

- Proprius alone.
- Meus (or tuus, etc.) alone, which tends to be placed first when it's emphatic (e.g. meus animus vs. animus meus).
- For extra emphasis, meus etc. can be coupled with the genitive of ipse (e.g. meus ipsius animus = more or less "the soul of me myself") or another form of ipse can be used depending on the construction of the sentence; for example, meum ipsa animum laesi means literally "I myself hurt my soul", but the kind of emphasis it conveys can be expressed more naturally in English as "I hurt my own soul".
 

Michael Zwingli

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Thank you, Pacifica.
Meus (or tuus, etc.) alone, which tends to be placed first when it's emphatic (e.g. meus animus vs. animus meus
Ah, this is interesting. So, while animus meus would be translated "my (own) soul/mind/courage/etc., etc.", and meus animus might be translated as "my very own soul/mind/courage..."?
 

Pacifica

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Maybe more like simply "my soul" vs. "my own soul". But it isn't so clear-cut, either. The possessive sometimes comes first without conveying all that much emphasis, and occasionally you'll find that "my own" is a good translation even if the possessive comes second. But let's say there's just a tendency for the possessive to come first to convey emphasis.
 

Michael Zwingli

Civis Illustris

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I have a question about one aspect presented above:
I've seen proprius in conjunction with possessives to mean "one's (my, your, his, etc.) own" in medieval Latin, but it's unusual in classical Latin. In classical Latin, that kind of meaning is usually expressed in one of these ways:

- Proprius alone...
I am wondering when proprius is used this way, how one is to answer the question "who's own?" in cases where context might not clarify. I take an example from Cicero: "...manceps fit Chrysogonus; tria praedia vel nobilissima Capitoni propria traduntur..." ("...Chrysogonus has become the surety agent; three of (Sextus Roscius') most noted farms are given to Capito as his own..."). Here, propria clearly means "his own" because it is clear from the context that praedia, the three farms, is the referent. What, though, if the referent is not so clear...what if there is no indirect object to do so? For instance, if I wanted to say, "I was angered by my son's own indifference", I think that I could write "Filii mei neglectione propria irascebar". If, however, I wanted to say that "I was angered by my own indifference", "Neglectione propria irascebar" would seem to leave the unstated referent vague. I was angered by who's own indifference? The basic issue here is reflexivity; "...my own indifference..." is a phrase indicating reflexivity (indicating that the referent of the indifference is the subject of the sentence), while "...my indifference..." is not (and the referent is, therefore, vague). Reflexivity, of course, has the power to indicate the referent in a sentence. I know, from the above, that one could simply state "Neglectione mea irascebar" or "Mea neglectione irascebar", but then it seems unclear that one wants to overtly state the emphatically reflexive "...my own indifference", as opposed to the less reflexive "...my indifference". What is the best way to overcome this? This is why I was asking about the possible pairing of proprius with meus, as in "Neglectione propria mea irascebar", since one of the basic meanings of proprius is "own (proper to oneself)", and since one of the basic functions of "own" in English is to mark a possessive determiner (such as meus/tuus..." as reflexive, referring back to the subject of the clause or sentence. Perhaps the answer here lies in the meus ipsius construction, but what if meus must take the ablative, as in my example...then...ummm... "...meo/mea ipsius..."? This cannot be "kosher", as they say in Jersey. Perhaps this conundrum is the reason that Medieval authors began pairing proprius with possessives in the first place? I wonder why said Medievals (or even the Chickpea himself, who was in no way loath) simply did not create a compound word to solve this: "proprimeus/-a/-um"!
 
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Pacifica

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I am wondering when proprius is used this way, how one is to answer the question "who's own?" in cases where context might not clarify.
Context usually does clarify. If it doesn't, though, you can use a different construction.
If, however, I wanted to say that "I was angered by my own indifference", "Neglectione propria irascebar" would seem to leave the unstated referent vague.
It's implicitly clear that it's your own. If nothing in the context suggests otherwise, it's naturally taken to refer to the subject.
"Neglectione mea irascebar" or "Mea neglectione irascebar", but then it seems unclear that one wants to overtly state the emphatically reflexive "...my own indifference", as opposed to the less reflexive "...my indifference".
The use of mea is good. I wouldn't fret over "my" vs. "my own"... the difference isn't huge, especially in Latin. However, if you want extra emphasis, there's the method I mentioned above:
- For extra emphasis, meus etc. can be coupled with the genitive of ipse (e.g. meus ipsius animus = more or less "the soul of me myself") or another form of ipse can be used depending on the construction of the sentence; for example, meum ipsa animum laesi means literally "I myself hurt my soul", but the kind of emphasis it conveys can be expressed more naturally in English as "I hurt my own soul".
Perhaps the answer here lies in the meus ipsius construction, but what if meus must take the ablative, as in my example...then "...meo/mea ipsius..."?
What case meus is in doesn't make any difference in the ipsius construction. But in this sentence the construction mentioned above would be more common, I think.
 
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