constructio ad sensum

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From modern Latin cōnstrūctiō ([grammatical] construction) + ad (toward, [according] to) + sēnsum (accusative singular of sēnsus, abstractly “sense”, “notion”, “signification”): "grammatical construction according to [the] sense".



constructio ad sensum (plural constructiones ad sensum)

  1. (grammar) A grammatical construction in which a word’s inflexion is determined by the semantics of the word or words with which it associates, in contravention of what is required by grammar.
    • 1802, John David Michaelis (author) and Herbert Marsh (translator), Introduction to the New Teſtament, second edition (London: printed by Luke Hansard, for E. and C. Rivington, № 62, St. Paul’s Church-Yard), volume 4, chapter XXXII: “Of the two laſt Epiſtles of St. John”, § III: ‘Whether the ſecond Epiſtle was ſent to a particular perſon, or to a whole church’, page 450
      St. John ſpeaks of her children, as if they were all of them ſons, and ſays nothing of daughters. For, though he uſes both ver. 1. and ver. 4. the neuter τεϰνα, which when uſed by itſelf may include daughters as well as ſons, yet, ſince he adds in the former inſtance ȣς εγω αγαπω, and in the latter inſtance ϖεϱιπατȣντας εν αληθειᾳ, the maſculine relative and participle reſtrict the ſenſe to ſons aloneh.
      h St. John here uſes, what is called conſtructio ad ſenſum.
    • 1888, Hermathena (University of Dublin), issue 6, page 332
      Peculiarities in the order of words, occasional omissions of a word or words, constructiones ad sensum, carelessnesses, or roughness of style, and even positively bad writing, are faithfully reproduced.
    • 1895, Basil Lanneau Gildersleeve (revised with Gonzalez B. Lodge), Latin Grammar (third edition, 2003 reprint; →ISBN, 0865163537), part 1: “Etymology”, § 8: ‘Inflection of the Verb’, page 148
      The violation of the rules of agreement is due chiefly to one of two causes; either the natural relation is preferred to the artificial (cōnstrūctiō ad sēnsum, per synesin, according to the sense), or the nearer is preferred to the more remote.