Freshman Latin Grammar, Lesson 04
by William C. Michael
To complete this lesson, complete the following tasks:
- Study the lesson below, carefully and completely.
- Read the instructions for translation exercises.
- Complete translation exercises.
- Memorize all lesson vocabulary.
- Work to earn a perfect score on your lesson exam.
In this lesson, we begin our study of St. Jerome’s Latin translation of the Gospel of John. In each lesson, we will study five verses, until we have completed the first five chapters of the Gospel.
1 In principio erat Verbum, et Verbum erat apud Deum, et Deus erat Verbum. 2 Hoc erat in principio apud Deum. 3 Omnia per ipsum facta sunt, et sine ipso factum est nihil, quod factum est; 4 in ipso vita erat, et vita erat lux hominum, 5 et lux in tenebris lucet, et tenebrae eam non comprehenderunt.
Study the Exposition below until you know the translation of every word in the Latin text and can complete the translation from memory. The part of speech is given for each word, which should be studied but not memorized.
1 In principio erat Verbum, et Verbum erat apud Deum, et Deus erat Verbum.
in: preposition., “in”principio: susbtantive noun, “beginning”erat: verb, “was”verbum: susbtantive noun, “word”et: conjunction, “and”apud: preposition, “with”Deum: substantive noun, “God”Deus: substantive noun, “God”
Translation: In (the) beginning was (the) word, and (the) word was with God, and God was (the) word.
Note that, in Latin, articles (a, an, the) do not exist. We may add them in English translation, but when we do so, we place them in parentheses to remember that these words are not in the Latin text.
2 Hoc erat in principio apud Deum.
hoc: pronoun, “this”
Translation: This was in (the) beginning with God.
3 Omnia per ipsum facta sunt, et sine ipso factum est nihil, quod factum est;
omnia: adjective noun, “all things”per: preposition, “through”ipsum: pronoun, “him”facta: participle, “made”sunt: verb, “are”sine: preposition, “without”ipso: pronoun, “him”quod: pronoun, “that”factum: participle, “made”est: verb, “is”nihil: susbtantive noun, “nothing”
Translation: All things through him made are, and without him made is nothing, that made is.
4 In ipso vita erat, et vita erat lux hominum,
ipso: pronoun, “him”vita: substantive noun, “life”lux: substantive noun, “light”hominum: substantive noun, “of men”
Translation: In him life was, and (the) life was (the) light of men,
5 et lux in tenebris lucet, et tenebrae eam non comprehenderunt.
tenebris: substantive noun, “darkness”lucet: verb, “shines”tenebrae: substantive noun, “darkness”eam: pronoun, “it”non: adverb, “not”comprehenderunt: verb, “did comprehend”
Translation: and (the) light in (the) darkness shines, and (the) darkness it not did comprehend