Step 7: Memorize the Indicative Active Verb Conjugations
As you have learned in Dowling’s webpage, the indicative mood is used when you are talking about simple facts and the active voice means that the subject of your sentence does the action rather than having the action done to it.
Wheelock’s provides a nice large table of paradigms for indicative active verbs. There are 5 paradigms for each of the 6 tenses and 6 forms of the word for each paradigms. Altogether, there are 180 words that you will be memorizing. If you have studied any of the romance languages, they will help you learn this table. Wheelock assumes that you will have read enough of his book to understand this table without some information that has been left out. Since we want our memorization to count for as much as possible, let’s add in the missing information.
First, you need to know the order of the conjugations. They all follow the following order from top to bottom: 1st person singular, 2nd person singular, 3rd person singular, 1st person plural, 2nd person plural, 3rd person plural. In English, the pronouns we use for all these ‘people’ are : I, you, he/she/it, we, you (referring to more than one person), and they. To this table, let’s add abbreviations for the English pronouns to the left just as we had abbreviations for the 5 cases in previous tables. For this table, we can use the abbreviations I, Y, H, W, Y, and T. I don’t think we have to worry much about Y being used twice. Just remember to think of it as singular or plural depending on the context. If you really want to, you could write ‘yall’ instead.
Another thing that would be nice to learn is the meaning of the words you are copying. laudo=praise, moneo=warn, ago=drive, audio=hear, capio=capture. *I’ve left out the macrons to make it easy to type the words.
Within each tense, all the paradigms are very similar, so I don’t think this table will require as many repetitions as the noun declensions required. Here’s my plan of attack for this table. Go through the table one tense at a time. Write out each new paradigm 10 times and then write the growing table 5 times. Once you finish a tense, set it aside and move on to the next tense, copying new paradigms 10 times and then copying your growing table (which includes only words from the current tense) 5 times. After each tense has been completed, write out the entire table starting with the first tense and ending with the last tense that you have learned. Your last step, of course will be to write out the entire table 200 times.
- Present Tense
- Write the first paradigm in the present tense section 15 times
- Write the second paradigm in the present tense section 10 times
- Write the first and second paradigms in the present tense section together 5 times.
- Write the third paradigm in the present tense section 10 times.
- Write the first, second, and third paradigms in the present tense section 5 times.
- Continue until you complete the present tense section
- Imperfect Tense
- Write the first paradigm in the imperfect tense section 15 times
- Write the second paradigm in the imperfect tense section 10 times
- Write the first and second paradigms in the imperfect tense section 5 times.
- Write the third paradigm in the imperfect tense section 10 times
- Write the first, second, and third paradigms in the imperfect tense section 5 times.
- Continue until you complete the imperfect tense.
- Write all that you have memorized so far; the perfect and imperfect tense sections of the table.
- Move on to the future tense.
- Continue in this manner until you have completed the last tense (future perfect).
- You should be memorizing each tense one at a time, but write out the entire table once after you finish memorizing a tense.
- Finally, write out the entire table 200 times!
Tip: Say the tense and correct pronoun before writing each word. This will help connect the word to the correct tense and pronoun in your mind. Latin has its own pronouns which you will learn later, but for now the English versions will do.
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