RESULT CLAUSES

This is the third of the major Subjunctive constructions using “UT”. Here you will find the important differences to help you to distinguish between them when you see them in a passage – and plenty of advice & practice to improve your translation skills!

 

As ever, use the links in the box below to travel quickly to the different sections of this page. 


 


What is a Result Clause?

Result Clauses in Latin

The "T" Words

Translating Result Clauses

Practice Sentences

POSSUM

Just For Fun...

 

 

 


 


 

 

 

  WHAT ARE RESULT CLAUSES?
              
      
RESULT clauses (often called CONSECUTIVE, or CONSEQUENCE clauses), as the name suggests, set out what happened because of some previous action or event - in other words, their RESULT!

       It will be much easier to understand if we look at some examples, first in English:

    e.g.  The slave ran so quickly that no-one could catch him
            There were so many of the enemy that our army has been overwhelmed
            She is so beautiful that all the young men are in love with her


       You will quickly notice a certain "formula" of expression common to each of the examples above:

           "SO (+ an adjective or adverb) ……THAT……."


      This can be easy to confuse with our use of "so that" in a Purpose Clause; the important difference is the presence of extra words between the "so…" and the "….that", most usually an adjective or an adverb.

      Sometimes there may be just a verb:

         e.g.  He was so wounded that he couldn't walk

 

    Here the emphasis has changed somewhat onto the word "SO" itself - it takes on the sense of "TO SUCH AN EXTENT", or possibly "IN SUCH A WAY"; there is a similar adjustment in cases like this in Latin, as we shall see.

 

Once you have seen a few Result Clauses, the similarity of language they all share makes it quite an easy structure to recognise - again, in both languages!

 

 

 

 



 

 

RESULT CLAUSES IN LATIN

 

         This construction is also introduced by the word "UT", as with Purpose Clauses and Indirect Commands; but that is about all they share in common!

        The differences include:

·        "NE" is NOT USED if the clause happens to be negative: a "NON" is put before the verb in the normal way

·        All 4 tenses of the Subjunctive may be found after "UT"

·        SEQUENCE of TENSES is not strictly observed: the tense of the Subjunctive tends to correspond to the tense of the INDICATIVE we would naturally use to express it in English

·        There is always a 'clue' or 'sign-post' word to be found in the Main Clause; although for once it has nothing to do with the verb!

    VDB traditionally calls these 'sign-posts' the "T" words, for a reason that will shortly become rather obvious….!


   To express the "Rule" (if it can really be so described), the nearest useful formula is:

     

       UT (or UT…NON…) + Subjunctive  -  same tense as English.


 

   Within the Main Clause, confirming the construction as a Result Clause, there will always be found a sign-post "T" word.

 

 

 

 



 

 

 

THE "T" WORDS

                      

        These are the Latin words corresponding to our English word "SO" (or possibly "SUCH  A….).


       
The most common are:

           TAM  -  SO (followed by an adjective or adverb)
           TANTUS -a -um  -  SO GREAT, SO BIG (the Romans never said 'tam magnus')
           TOT  (indeclinable)  -  SO MANY  (...nor did they say 'tam multus'!) 
           TALIS -is -e  -  (OF)  SUCH  (A KIND)


Also possible to meet in the Set Books:

           TANTOPERE  -  SO GREATLY (compare 'MAGNOPERE')
           TOTIENS  -  SO OFTEN, SO MANY TIMES


Finally, definitely important are the 2 "T" words that don't begin with "T"…:

           ADEO  -  SO  (in the sense of 'TO SUCH AN EXTENT')
           ITA  -  SO  (in the sense of 'IN SUCH A WAY')

    Both these last two are only used with VERBS, rather than adjectives or adverbs (that's always 'TAM').

 

 

 

 



 

 

 

TRANSLATING RESULT CLAUSES

 

           As ever, the important thing is actually to recognise that you've got one!

Useful pointers (apart from the presence of a "T" word) would be to see 'NON' in the UT-clause, and also a Perfect or Pluperfect Subjunctive.

 

      Once spotted, the sentence can be translated largely as it comes - when you reach the Subjunctive verb, however, fix on its TENSE, and translate it AS THAT SAME TENSE of the INDICATIVE in English (i.e. a normal verb!).


        e.g.  (to translate the 3 original English examples above)


    
SERVUS  TAM  CELERITER  CUCURRIT  UT  NEMO  EUM  CAPERE  POSSET.
     The slave ran so fast that no-one was able to catch him. 

     TOT  ERANT  HOSTES  UT  EXERCITUS  NOSTER  OPPRESSUS  SIT.
      There were so many of the enemy that our army has been overwhelmed.

     TAM  PULCHRA  EST  UT  OMNES  IUVENES  EAM  AMENT.
     She is so beautiful that all the young men are in love with her.
 


      Other smaller points to notice are the agreements of TANTUS and TALIS:


    e.g.  MAGISTER  TANTAM  VOCEM  HABEBAT  UT  PUERI  PARVI  TIMERENT
.
        The master had such a loud voice that the small boys were afraid.

            TALIBUS  ARMIS  PUGNABANT  BARBARI  UT  OMNES  MIRAREMUR.
        The barbarians fought with such (unusual) weapons that we were all amazed.

 

       Also watch out for the 2 non-T "T" words ITA & ADEO - it's usually OK just to translate them as 'SO', but be on the look-out for a chance to express their full meanings:

 e.g.  PATRIAM  ADEO  AMO  UT  SEMPER  HIC  HABITARE  VELIM.
         I love my country so much that I always want to live here.

          MUROS  ITA  AEDIFICAVERANT  UT  HOSTES  EOS  DELERE  NON POTUISSENT.
          They had built the walls in such a way that the enemy had not been able to destroy them.

 

 

 

 



 

 

 

PRACTICE SENTENCES

 

        Try some yourself: make sure you identify the tense of the Subjunctive correctly. 

 

    1.  SEPTIMUS  REX  ERAT  TAM  CRUDELIS  UT  SUPERBUS  A  ROMANIS  VOCARETUR.

Answer:  Their seventh king was so cruel that the Romans called him "The Proud" (literally:  '…that he was called….by the Romans'). 

 

    2.  POMPEIOS  TOTIENS  IVI  UT  URBEM  IAM  OPTIME  COGNOVERIM.

Answer:  I have been to Pompeii so many times that I now know the city very well (literally: 'I have got to know….').

 

    3.  FRATER  MEUS  TANTOS  PEDES  HABET  UT  CALIGAE  SIBI  INVENIRI  NON  POSSINT.

Answer:  My brother has such big feet that he can't find any sandals (literally: '...sandals can't be found for him').

 

    4.  TOGA  TUA  TAM  VETUS  EST  UT  NOVAM  EMERE  VERO  DEBEAS.

Answer:  Your toga is so old that you really ought to buy a new one.

 

    5.  MILITES  TANTOPERE  IN  VIA  CLAMABANT  UT  MULIERES  TERRERENTUR.

Answer:  The soldiers were shouting so loudly in the street that the women were terrified.

 

    6.  SENEX  PECUNIAM  ITA  CELAVERAT  UT  A  FILIIS  NON  INVENTA  ESSET.

Answer:  The old man had hidden his money in such a way that his sons hadn't found it (literally: 'it had not been found by…').

 

    7.  VILLA  NOSTRA  TAM  LONGE  ROMA  ABEST  UT  UNO  DIE  ADVENIRE  NON POSSITIS.

Answer:  Our villa is so far from Rome that you won't be able to reach it in one day.

 

    8.  DOMINUS  ERAT  TAM  IRATUS  UT  SERVUM  IN  FLUMEN  IECISSET.

Answer:  The master was so angry that he had thrown his slave into the river.

 

    9.  MATER  LIBERORUM  ADEO  GAUDEBAT  UT  LOQUI  NON  POSSET.

Answer:  The children's mother was so happy that she couldn't speak.

 

    10.  IUVENES  TALIA  VERBA  CLAMABANT  UT  PUELLAE  AUDIRE  NOLLENT.

Answer:  The words which the young men were shouting were of such a kind that the girls didn't want to listen (literally: 'The young men were shouting such words...'). .

 

    11.  URBS  TAM  BENE  DEFENSA  ERAT  UT  NUMQUAM  OPPUGNATA  ESSET.

Answer:  The city was so well defended that it had never been attacked.

 

    12.  SUNT  TOT  ARBORES  UT  SILVAM  VIDERE  NON  POSSIM.

Answer:  There are so many trees that I can't see the wood…..

 

 

 

 



 

 

POSSUM


      As you may have noticed, you will find that the verb POSSUM appears very frequently in this construction:

      "Things happen (or happened) in such ways that something else CAN (or COULD) happen as the result"


You should make sure that you are quite familiar with the Subjunctives of this verb, so that you can identify the tenses easily.


      When translating the clauses into Latin (don't worry, you'll get the chance in a minute…!) it is quite easy to overlook that POSSUM is actually needed:

    e.g.  'The forum was so crowded that we couldn't find our friends'
       really means:  '…..that
we WERE not ABLE to find…'


    Be prepared for this, as we now reach the section which is…… 

 

 

 



 

 

JUST FOR FUN….

 

         If you follow the Result Cause "RULE", you should be all right with these: you only need to use the SAME TENSE of the Subjunctive as you have of the English verb already (but remember you may need POSSUM).

         This may be the time to remind yourself of the formation of the Perfect & Pluperfect Subjunctives: click here to revisit the charts.

        Watch out for "so great" and "so many": don't use 'TAM'. 

 

    1.  The river was so fast that the woman could not cross.

Answer:  FLUMEN  TAM  CELERE  ERAT  UT  FEMINA  TRANSIRE  NON  POSSET.

 

    2.  The boys had worked with such great care that the master praised them.

Answer:  PUERI  TANTA  CURA  LABORAVERANT  UT  MAGISTER  EOS  LAUDAVERIT.

 

    3.  The poor girl was weeping so much that everyone was looking at her.

Answer:  PUELLA  MISERA  ADEO  FLEBAT  UT  OMNES  EAM  SPECTARENT.

 

    4.  The soldiers had pitched camp in such a way that the enemy hadn't been able to get in ( = enter!)

Answer:  MILITES   CASTRA  ITA  POSUERANT  UT  HOSTES  INTRARE  NON  POTUISSENT.

 

    5.  There were so many arrows that I couldn't see the sky.

Answer:  TOT  SAGITTAE  ERANT  UT  CAELUM  VIDERE  NON  POSSEM.

 

    6.  My brother has drunk so much wine ("TANTUM  VINI") that he cannot walk.

Answer:  FRATER  MEUS  TANTUM  VINI  BIBIT  UT  AMBULARE  NON  POSSIT.

 

    7.  That merchant has so many slaves that he doesn't know all (their) names.

Answer:  MERCATOR  ILLE  TOT  SERVOS  HABET  UT  OMNIA  NOMINA  NESCIAT. (bet you got caught by 'NE-scio!)

 

    8.  This work is so easy that you have finished already.

Answer:  HOC  OPUS  EST  TAM  FACILE  UT  IAM  CONFECERIS.

 

      which isn't, I'm afraid, true at all (about it being easy, I mean!). If you have made even a 'fair' attempt at these, you have done exceptionally well. I am aware that they seem to be getting harder!

 

Hopefully, though, you haven't become so fed up with VDB that you want to throw him into the river….!