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cunae reginae


From Proto-Italic *koinā, from Proto-Indo-European *ḱoy-no- (lair, cradle), from *ḱey- (to lie down). Cognate with Ancient Greek κοίτη (koítē).[1]



cūnae f pl (genitive cūnārum); first declension (usually plural)

  1. cradle
    • 8, Ovid, Fasti, book 6, line 167:
      Post illud nec aves cunas violasse feruntur,/ Et rediit puero, qui fuit ante, color.
      (please add an English translation of this quotation)
  2. (metonymically) nest of young birds
    • after 8, Ovid, Tristia, book 3, elegy 12, line 10:
      Utque malae crimen matris deponat hirundo,/ Sub trabibus cunas, parvaque tecta facit.
      (please add an English translation of this quotation)
  3. (metonymically) birth or early childhood, infancy; compare cūnābulum
    • 8, Ovid, Metamorphoses, book 3, line 313:
      Furtim illum primis Ino matertera cunis/ Educat. inde datum Nymphae Nyseïdes antris/ Occuluere suis, lactisque alimenta dedere.
      (please add an English translation of this quotation)
    • 8, Ovid, Metamorphoses, book 9, line 67:
      Cunarum labor est angues superare mearum,/ Dixit: et, ut vincas alios, Acheloë, dracones,/ Pars quota Lernaeae serpens eris unus Echidnae?
      (please add an English translation of this quotation)

Usage notes[edit]

Although the singular forms (see cūna) do exist in Classical Latin, they were rarely used. The plural was normally used for a singular object.


First-declension noun, plural only.

Case Plural
Nominative cūnae
Genitive cūnārum
Dative cūnīs
Accusative cūnās
Ablative cūnīs
Vocative cūnae

Derived terms[edit]



  • cunae”, in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • cunae”, in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • cunae in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire illustré latin-français, Hachette
  • cunae”, in Harry Thurston Peck, editor (1898) Harper's Dictionary of Classical Antiquities, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • cunae”, in William Smith et al., editor (1890) A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, London: William Wayte. G. E. Marindin
  1. ^ De Vaan, Michiel (2008) Etymological Dictionary of Latin and the other Italic Languages (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 7)‎[1], Leiden, Boston: Brill, →ISBN