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Blogger Ken Lammers said...

Half the fun of practicing law is watching 3 different lawyers pronounce "nolo contendere" three different ways while you are waiting for your case to be called.


2:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The basics of Latin grammar are similar to those of Attic Greek, but then all of the sudden you will find yourself sitting there convinced of something when you realize that you're using some weird Greek rule rather than a Latin rule (it happens to me all the time). Also, they have an ablative, and there is no proper equivalent to the middle, more's the pity. I suppose, though, that for your non-Classics person attitude towards Latin, the rules are similar enough that you don't have to worry about them.

I think because Latin is a more standard language for high schools and so forth, there are far more dictionaries. There really are a whole bunch. The small ones will all help you read Cicero, and probably some Virgil and Caesar, and other than that they will give you smattering small bits of help, but they aren't that useful for the weird stuff, but then, you're in law, not Classics, so you don't need to know about weird people who tried to write like Cicero and succeeded only in confusing everyone all the more than Cicero ever did, cause they were writing in the 10th century or something. But, right, small dictionaries. I use use Cassell's Latin dictionary, and it's rather nice. The small Oxford is supposed to be nice, and I think it's edited by Lewis, who worked with Short to do the big one my last Latin prof. was totally into. Surprisingly, some of the really small, pocket sized ones are remarkably good (again, not for serious translation, but useful). As is Perseus, but Perseus is always wonderful.

--Tori (who doesn't have a blogger account and doesn't feel like making one.)

9:06 PM  
Blogger Gus said...

I remember my first time in court (I went to court several times in VA, always for traffic related ``events" -- I even one on appeal once. Boy oh boy was the prosecutor in a fluster.). I was to plead nolo contendere to one of the charges. I spent hours, quite honestly, learning how to pronounce it. While I was waiting for my turn at the judge's ear, I was subjected to many many variations on the pronunciation, and each time I became less certain of my well researched knowledge.

When my turn finally came up, I pleaded no contest.


9:09 PM  

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