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Terence and the Verb ‘To Be’ in Latin$
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Giuseppe Pezzini

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198736240

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198736240.001.0001

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Contraction of esse

Contraction of esse

Collection of Evidence

(p.26) (p.27) II Contraction of esse
Terence and the Verb ‘To Be’ in Latin

Giuseppe Pezzini

Oxford University Press

The aim of this chapter is to collect the evidence for the contraction of esse in Latin (-st < est, -s(s) < es). After a general introduction to the phenomenon and a phonological overview, the chapter presents a compilation of the evidence for contracted forms of est in Latin, collected from a large variety of sources: direct transmission in manuscripts, metre, readings in manuscripts potentially resulting from a misunderstanding of a contracted spelling, inscriptions, grammarians, parallels in Sabellian languages, and other types of evidence. The chapter concludes with a presentation of the evidence on contraction of the second person form ’s(s) (= es(s)), which is different from that concerning the third person.

Keywords:   contracted spellings, manuscripts, inscriptions, Sabellian languages, metre, est, es, esse, grammarians

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