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Cognate Accusative.


An intransitive verb often takes the Accusative of a noun of kindred meaning, usually modified by an adjective or in some other manner.

This construction is called the Cognate Accusative or Accusative of Kindred Signification:

a. Verbs of taste, smell, and the like take a cognate accusative of the quality: -

b. The cognate accusative is often loosely used by the poets: -

c. A neuter pronoun or an adjective of indefinite meaning is very common as cognate accusative (cf. §§214. d, 397. a.): -

d. So in many common phrases: -

NOTE 1: In these cases substantives with a definite meaning would be in some other construction:

NOTE 2: In some of these cases the connection of the accusative with the verb has so faded out that the words have become real adverbs: as, - multum, plús, plúrimum; plérumque, for the most part, generally; céterem, cétera, for the rest, otherwise, but; prímum, first; nihil, by no means, not at all; aliquid, somewhat; quid, why; facile, easily. So in the comparative of adverbs (§218). But the line cannot be sharply drawn, some of the examples under b may be classed as adverbial.