Talk:amo

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'Amo' (latin) is a verb?[edit]

Yeah so basically, if 'amo' means 'I love', I wouldn't say that makes it a verb! 'to love' is verbal, and 'love' is a verb, but 'I love' could be a whole grammatical clause all on its own. It's the combination of noun phrase and verb phrase. Oliverbeatson 16:36, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

By verb we mean that form of a verb that is normally included in a dictionary. For most languages this is the infinitive. However, the convention with Latin is that it is the first person singular of the simple present tense. Don't ask me why. SemperBlotto 17:26, 29 November 2009 (UTC)
What SB is referring to is the lemma. (We also list verb forms under Verb POS headers; they are indeed also verbs, but they are not lemmata.) I think I can shed light upon why the lemmata of Latin verbs are their first-person singular present active indicative forms rather than their present active infinitive forms… Verbs (perhaps not all languages’ verbs, but Latin ones, at least) conjugate for person, number, tense, voice, and mood; this makes Latin’s infinitive and participial verb forms defective. In Welsh, the equivalents are caru (to love”, “amāre) and caraf (I love”, “amō); infinitive forms in that language are called berfenwau (verbnouns), because they’re not proper verbs, since verbs must be able to conjugate to show person, number, &c. The same reasoning may apply for Latin. Furthermore, your confusion may result from the fact that English first-person singular present active indicative verb forms need the first-person singular (nominative) pronoun (I) to show that what forms they are (cf. am, one of the very few (the only?) English first-person singular present active indicative verb form(s) that can be used alone, without ambiguity); in “I love”, love is still conjugated thus, but that conjugation isn’t marked. Contrast the English imperative mood, which does not need pronouns (the second-person is assumed).  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 21:03, 29 November 2009 (UTC)
SemperBlotto, FWIW, my Latin dictionary as well as all my old study materials use the infinitive as the main entry, which seems much more sensible to me, if only because it's more obvious that way which paradigm the verb belongs to.
That's odd. None of my Latin dictionaries use the infinitive as the headword; they all use the first principal part, as we have done here. So do all the major textbooks on Latin, and I own more than a dozen of those. The conjugation tables I have also list the infinitive forms at the end of the table, not at the start. One big problem with using the infinitive as the main entry is that, in Latin, it often isn't used as a verb. Sometimes it's used as another part of speech. --EncycloPetey (talk) 23:11, 12 June 2013 (UTC)
Romance languages have an implied pronoun as part of the conjugation. The pronoun may be expressed, but the morphology of the inflected verb ending tells you what that pronoun ought to be, even if it isn't included. As a result, the pronoun is often omitted in writing and speech. This is true in Spanish, French, and other Latin-derived languages just as much as it is in Latin. In any event, it was Roman grmmarians who decided what a verbum should be, and words with conjugation patterns like amō are what they labelled with that term. Yes, a Latin verb is functionally equivalent with what modern grammarians would call a clause, but that's true of every verb form in Latin (except maybe the supine). --EncycloPetey 21:10, 29 November 2009 (UTC)