Latin edit

Alternative forms edit

Etymology edit

From Proto-Italic *juwenis, from Proto-Indo-European *h₂yéwHō. Cognate with Sanskrit युवन् (yúvan), Persian جوان (javân), Old Irish óc (early OIr: óac), Old English ġeong (whence English young).

Pronunciation edit

Noun edit

iuvenis m or f (genitive iuvenis); third declension

  1. A youth, a young man, young woman, young adult (between ages 20-40), (older than an adulescens but younger than a senior/senex)
    Antonym: senex

Usage notes edit

  • While iuvenis does mean "youth, young man, young woman", the ages of a iuvenis ranged from age 20 to age 40. By today's standards, English speakers would not call a man who is thirty-eight years of age a "young adult", but in classical Latin, this was common practice.

Declension edit

Third-declension noun.

Case Singular Plural
Nominative iuvenis iuvenēs
Genitive iuvenis iuvenum
Dative iuvenī iuvenibus
Accusative iuvenem iuvenēs
Ablative iuvene iuvenibus
Vocative iuvenis iuvenēs

Adjective edit

iuvenis (genitive iuvenis, comparative iūnior or iuvenior, superlative iuvenissimus); third-declension one-termination adjective

  1. youthful, young
    Synonyms: novus, novellus, recēns
    Antonyms: senex, grandaevus, vetus, vetulus
    • 27 BCE – 25 BCE, Titus Livius, Ab Urbe Condita
      Diu inter primores iuvenum Romanorum silentium fuit
      • 1924 translation by Benjamin Oliver Foster
        The young Roman nobles were for a long time silent.
    • c. 100 CE – 110 CE, Tacitus, Histories 4.8.18:
      Suadere etiam Prisco ne supra principem scanderet, ne Vespasianum senem triumphalem, iuvenum liberorum patrem, praeceptis coerceret.
    • before late 4th century CE[1], pseudo-Quintilian, Declamationes Maiores 9.23.12:
      Si quis grandis natu parens est, miserebitur senis, si quis iuvenis filius, miserebitur adolescentis.
      If anyone is an aged parent, he will commiserate with the old; if anyone is a young son, he will commiserate with the young.

Usage notes edit

  • Even when this word functions as an adjective, it normally retains the same forms as when used as a noun (it can potentially be analyzed as a noun in apposition, aside from the fact that it possesses comparative forms). Adjectival forms distinct from the noun are not attested in Classical Latin.
    • The probably fourth-century grammatical text Instituta artium by pseudo-Probus or Probus minor (per modern scholarship, the author is not the first-century grammarian Marcus Valerius Probus) explicitly states that although iuvenis is said to be of common gender, it should not be used in the neuter plural.[2]
    • Medieval and New Latin texts supply some examples of innovative uniquely adjectival forms, such as i-stem genitive plural iuvenium, neuter nominative/accusative singular iuvene and plural iuvenia.
  • In Classical Latin, when applied to a human (as it usually is) this adjective often implies a more specific phase of life than merely 'not yet old', typically referring to young adults rather than infants or small children. See the note beneath the noun for more details on the typical age range. However, the sense of the adjective is not always this specific throughout the history of Latin. There are attestations in Imperial Latin that show overlap rather than contrast with the age category denoted by the word adulēscēns. A sense 'immature' or 'not adult' is attested in New Latin.

Declension edit

Third-declension one-termination adjective (non-i-stem).

Number Singular Plural
Case / Gender Masc./Fem. Masc./Fem.
Nominative iuvenis iuvenēs
Genitive iuvenum
Dative iuvenī iuvenibus
Accusative iuvenem iuvenēs
Ablative iuvene iuvenibus
Vocative iuvenis iuvenēs

Related terms edit

Descendants edit

References edit

  1. ^ M. Winterbottom (2015 December 22) “Declamationes pseudo-Quintilianeae”, in Oxford Classical Dictionary[1], Oxford University Press
  2. ^ Heinrich Keil (1864) Grammatici Latini / 4 Probi Donati Servii qui feruntur de Arte Grammatica Libri ex recensione H. Keilii[2], volume 4, page 68:nunc etiam hoc monemus, quod hoc nomen, id est iuvenis, in genere neutro propter metri vel structurae sonum numerum pluralem facere prohibeatur.
  3. ^ AIS: Sprach- und Sachatlas Italiens und der Südschweiz [Linguistic and Ethnographic Atlas of Italy and Southern Switzerland] – map 51: “giovani” – on

Further reading edit