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Saint Francis DeSales

Beginning Latin Grammar, Lesson 5: Present Tense

Latin Grammar for iPad and iPhone
"I would make them all learn English;
and then I would let the clever ones learn Latin as an honour, and Greek as a treat." --Sir Winston Churchill

If you need to review English grammar before introducing Latin Grammar, go to Simple Grammar.

Lesson 1: Latin Nouns

The Present Tense may be expressed in three ways in English (simple present, progressive present and emphatic present). In Latin there is just one form of these three English expressions. For example, the Latin verb, ambulat means (he, she, it) walks, is walking and does walk.

The verb to be is irregular in English and in Latin.

English......................................Latin
I am..........................sum
you (singular) are.....es
he, she, it is..............est
we are......................sumus
you (plural) are......estis
they are .................sunt

Never confuse the verb to be with the Progressive Present. The Latin verb to be is used only when there is no verb directly following it. For example, The girl is calling in Latin is Puella vocat but The girl is Cornelia becomes Puella est Cornelia in Latin.

Practice Exercises

Change the following verb forms to Latin.
  1. She does love.
  2. He is working.
  3. It does please.
  4. They are.
  5. She loves.
  6. She is.
  7. She is calling.
  8. He does swim.
  9. He is swimming.
What Latin personal endings on verbs correspond to the following English words?
  1. we
  2. you (singular)
  3. they
  4. I
  5. he, she, or it
  6. you (plural)
Translate the following into Latin.
  1. The queen is calling.
  2. She is there.
  3. The sailor does swim.
  4. I am.
  5. The poet walks.

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