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Verbs of Remembering and Forgetting.


Verbs of remembering and forgetting take either the Accusative or the Genitive of the object: -

a. Memini takes the Accusative when it has the literal sense of retaining in the mind what one has seen, heard, or learned. Hence the accusative is used of persons whom one remembers as acquaintances, or of things which one has experienced.

So oblívíscor in the opposite sense,to forget literally, to lose all memory of a thing (very rarely, of a person).

b. Meminí takes the Genitive when it means to be mindful or regardful of a person or thing, to think of somebody or something (often with special interest or warmth of feeling).

So oblívíscor in the opposite sense, to disregard, or dismiss from the mind, and the adjective oblitus, careless or regardless.

NOTE 1: With both meminí and oblívíscor the personal and reflexive pronouns are regularly in the Genitive; neuter pronouns and adjectives used substantively are regularly in the Accusative; abstract nouns are often in the Genitive. These uses come in each instance from the natural meaning of the verbs (as defined above).

NOTE 2: Meminí in the sense of mention takes the Genitive: as, eundem Achillam cûius supra meminimus (B. C. iii. 108), that same Achilles whom I mentioned above.

c. Reminiscor is rare. It takes the Accusative in the literal sense of call to mind, recollect; the Genitive in the more figurative sense of be mindful of:

d. Recordor, recollect, recall, regularly takes the Accusative: -

NOTE: Recordor takes the genitive once (Pison. 12); it is never used with a personal object, but may be followed by de with the ablative of the person or thing (cf. § 351. N.): -