Disputatio:Bellum Alexandrinum

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What is all that about the dative of alius?[fontem recensere]

Why can't I say "auctori alio"? I don't mean "to the other author" (of two), but "to another author".

I see Plautus used this dative, but I guess I'm no Plautus. All right, then, do I have to say "sed re vera ab alio quodam auctore scriptus"? Andrew Dalby (disputatio) 15:06, 15 Iunii 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

L&S isn't very clear on this point, and I don't have time to check a grammar book (I need to drive to Seattle to catch a plane very soon), but my understanding is as follows:
  • In classical Latin alius follows the pronominal declension, like unus.
  • Therefore the "proper" dative is alī (and the genitive alīus.
  • However both of these forms are rare, generally being replaced by the corresponding form of alter.
Now, this is from my memory, so you're welcome to look it up and check if I'm right. Likewise rules of this kind often turn out to be not so much rules in the actual texts, so you're welcome to look for examples and counter-examples. --Iustinus 16:33, 15 Iunii 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]