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bovēs cum iugō (oxen with yoke)

Alternative forms[edit]


Etymology 1[edit]

From Proto-Italic *jugom, from Proto-Indo-European *yugóm, from *yewg- (to yoke, harness, join) + *-óm. Cognate with Ancient Greek ζυγόν (zugón). Equivalent to a substantivization of the singular nominative neuter declentive of adjective iugus.


iugum n (genitive iugī); second declension

  1. yoke (for oxen) or collar (for a horse)
  2. (by extension) a team of oxen
    • 21 BCE, Marcus Terentius Varro, De Re Rustica (Concerning Rural Matters): XIX, 3:
      Quod addit asinos, qui stercus vectent, treis, asinum molarium; in vinea iugerum iugum boum, asinorum iugum, asinum molarium; in hoc genere femiuocalium, adiiciendum de pecore, ea fola, quae agri colendi caufa erunt, (ut solent esse pecuaria,) pauca habenda, quo facilius mancipia, quae solent se tueri, et assidus esse possint.
      As to his addition of three donkeys to haul manure and one for the mill; for a vineyard of 100 iugera, a yoke of oxen, a pair of donkeys, and one for the mill; under this head of inarticulate equipment it is to be added that of other animals only those that are to be kept which are of service in agriculture, and the few which are usually allowed as the private property of the slaves for their more comfortable support and to make them more diligent in their work.
  3. horizontal beam or rail fastened perpendicular to a post, especially an architectural crossbeam
  4. any of various types of horizontal structural member: the beam which united the upright posts of a loom, the crossbar of a lyre, the crossrail of a trellis, the thwart or cross-bench of a boat (the rower's bench)
  5. a makeshift archway of three spears under which a vanquished enemy was made to pass in humiliation
  6. a scalebeam, and hence, by metonymy, a pair of scales
    Synonyms: bilanx, lībra, statēra, trutina
  7. the constellation Libra
  8. summit of a mountain or ridge of a mountain or range of mountains
    • 20 BCE, Marcus Vitruvius Pollio, De architectura (Concerning Architecture).Liber 10:1:
      Montis Appennini primae radices ab Tyrrenico mari inter Alpis et extremas Etruriae regiones oriuntur. Eius vero montis iugum se circumagens et media curvatura prope tangens oras maris Hadriani pertingit circumitionibus contra fretum.
      The slopes of the Apennines originate from the Tyrrhenian Sea and extend between the Alps and the extreme regions of Etruria. The ridge of this mountain range then bends in an arch and almost reaches the middle part of the Adriatic coast, while, completing the arch, it ends up touching the Strait (of Messina).
  9. A unit of land measurement in the Roman province of Hispania, determined to be the amount of land which a yoke of oxen can reasonably plough in one day
    • 1st century BCE, Marcus Terentius Varro, Rerum rusticarum libri III (Agricultural Topics in Three Books). Liber I, X:
      Ille, Modos, quibus metirentur rura, alius alios constituit. Nam in Hispania ulteriore metiuntur iugis, in Campania versibus, apud nos in agro Romano ac Latino iugeris. Iugum vocant, quod iuncti boves uno die exarare possint.
      Each country has its own method of measuring land. Thus in farther Spain the unit of measure is the iugum, in Campania the versus, with us here in the district of Rome and in Latium the iugerum. The iugum is the amount of land which a yoke of oxen can plough in a day; the versus is an area 100 feet square; 2 the iugerum an area containing two square actus. (In the original Latin, iugum is rendered in its ablative case form: iugīs.)
  10. (figuratively) bond (of slavery, matrimony, etc.)

Second-declension noun (neuter).

Case Singular Plural
Nominative iugum iuga
Genitive iugī iugōrum
Dative iugō iugīs
Accusative iugum iuga
Ablative iugō iugīs
Vocative iugum iuga
Derived terms[edit]
Related terms[edit]
See also[edit]


  • iugum in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • iugum in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • iugum in Charles du Fresne du Cange’s Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (augmented edition, 1883–1887)
  • iugum in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire illustré Latin-Français, Hachette
  • Carl Meissner; Henry William Auden (1894) Latin Phrase-Book[1], London: Macmillan and Co.
    • to submit to the yoke of slavery: iugum servitutis accipere
    • to shake off the yoke of slavery: iugum servitutis excutere
    • to shake off the yoke of slavery: iugum servile a cervicibus deicere (Phil. 1. 2. 6)
    • to deliver some one from slavery: iugum servile alicui demere
    • to deliver some one from slavery: ab aliquo servitutem or servitutis iugum depellere
    • (ambiguous) a perpetual spring: aqua iugis, perennis
  • iugum in Harry Thurston Peck, editor (1898) Harper's Dictionary of Classical Antiquities, New York: Harper & Brothers

Etymology 2[edit]

Inflected forms.



  1. nominative neuter singular of iugus
  2. accusative neuter singular of iugus
  3. accusative masculine singular of iugus
  4. vocative neuter singular of iugus