Sīc meaning "yes"

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  • Snodv

    Senior Member
    English - Mid-Southern US
    I cannot answer the question of frequency, but Cassell's cites sic est, "it is so," and says it was used in affirmative answers, although it does not reveal whether it was commonly used as the affirmative answer. However, Charlton Lewis tells us that sic was used alone as "yes" colloquially. He cites Terence, but I would say Terence is pre-classical. And of course we know that sic eventually became Spanish (among others)--so it had to survive through the classical period to become part of the Romance languages.
     

    Scholiast

    Senior Member
    saluete amici!
    Charlton Lewis tells us that sic was used alone as "yes" colloquially. He cites Terence, but I would say Terence is pre-classical.
    Terence (and relevant here too is Plautus, to a lesser extent also Petronius and Apuleius) give us the best 'literary' evidence for colloquial Latin at any period, so I wouldn't be too worried about Snodv's 'pre-classical' reservation. ita can be used in the same way.

    Σ
     

    Sardokan1.0

    Senior Member
    Sardu / Italianu
    Weren't also "immo" and "etiam" used in affirmative answers?

    Latin Definitions for: immo (Latin Search) - Latin Dictionary and Grammar Resources - Latdict
    Latin Definitions for: etiam (Latin Search) - Latin Dictionary and Grammar Resources - Latdict

    They eventually evolved into the Sardinian "emmo" and "eja" (pronounce "èya"), both of them mean "yes", but "emmo" it's used more in affirmative answers, and "eja" in exclamations or in sharp replies.

    P.S.
    In Sardinian doesn't exist "si" as yes, we only use "emmo" or "eja".
     

    Scholiast

    Senior Member
    saluete amici!

    Sardinianus noster Sardokan1.0 has of course splendid native knowledge of one of the Romance legacy dialects closest to 'vulgar' Latin as it was spoken in anitiquity, and this at once commends his answer. But arising from this I have a hesitation, or rather, a question: classical Latin uses immo as an adversative particle 'Yes but...', or 'Nay rather...', ' 'Better...'. 'Otherwise...'. Curiosity is therefore aroused, how Latin immo comes to mean 'yes' (emmo) in modern Sardinian.

    Can anyone illuminate, please?

    Σ
     
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    Snodv

    Senior Member
    English - Mid-Southern US
    I don't know whether this sheds light or not, but I learned that immo meant "yes" or "no," and thus was often used with clarifying words so the reader or listener could figure out which. I came to think of it as more emphatic than adversative. The "nay more" translation sometimes given isn't a real negative, but means something like non modo...sed etiam, e.g. when Cicero says, "Vivit! Immo in senatum venit" and "Causa non bona est? Immo optima." I am only guessing that there must have been a preponderance of positive contexts at some point for immo to evolve in meaning to "yes."
     

    Sardokan1.0

    Senior Member
    Sardu / Italianu
    Salve!

    Unfortunately I have no clue of how "immo" comes to mean yes in modern Sardinian. I've noticed sometimes that many Sardinian verbs or expression often derive from secondary meanings in case a verb had various meanings.

    was often used with clarifying words
    This is how it's used in Sardinian, it's used when I give a complete answer to a question.

    Example :

    Andadu bi ses a tribagliare? - Emmo, andadu bi so / Emmo, ià bi so andadu
    Bonu est su puddu? - Emmo, bonu est / Emmo, ià est bonu


    Instead if a give a short answer, I use "eja" (etiam | et+iam -> e+ià -> e+ia -> eja)

    Andadu bi ses a tribagliare? - Eja
    Bonu est su puddu? - Eja
     
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