In manus tuas, Domine, commendo Spiritum meum


It’s time to parse some Latin and on this glorious lockdown Friday, we are going to parse

In Manus tuas, Domine, commendo Spitirum meum.

But first, and assuming that you are sitting comfortably, let me tell you about my new computer.

I bought a dirt cheap (sub £200) ACEPC running Windows 10 incredibly slowly. I zapped that and installed Kali Linux.

And suddenly, I have a machine that works, and works fast.

Nuff said.

As usual, let’s start by parsing our Latin sentence word by word.

In is a preposition meaning ‘in’ (like duh) or ‘to’ (like not duh) depending on whether the related noun is in the accusative or ablative case.

The related noun often comes immediately after the preposition, and in this case it does and is manus.

Manus, us (hand) is a fourth declension feminine noun and declines like so:-

Manus, manus, manum, manus, manui, manu. (singular)

Manus, manus, manus, manuum, mamibus, manibus. (plural)

As manus must be either accusative or ablative (because of in), the only possibility is an accusative plural.

Tuus (and I know the capital looks weird) is a possessive pronoun (your), which from memory (I hope) declines like bonus (an adjective often used as a model).

The accusative feminine plural of tuus is tuas. See how neat that is?

In manus tuas must mean ‘in your hands’.

Dominus, i has various meanings, and here means Lord. It is a second declension masculine noun.

Domine is the vocative of Dominus giving us ‘O Lord’.

Commendo (I entrust) is the first person singular of commendare.

In manus tuas, Domine, commendo … (Nn your hands I entrust …)

As well as being satisfying, Latin parsing is an easy way to increase your vocabulary and remember how nouns decline.

Just saying.

Spiritus, us (soul, breath, life) is also a fourth declension masculine noun. It is in the accusative (spiritum) along with meum which is what we would expect, as the object of the sentence.

And so finally,

In your hands, O Lord, I entrust my soul.

I’m not religious, but sometimes I wish I was.

Pax, Baci and Besos.


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One Response to In manus tuas, Domine, commendo Spiritum meum

  1. Thomas says:

    Thanks for the insightful translation, Moonface, I must confess I did not enjoy my Latin lessons in school, beautiful language nevertheless.
    “I’m not religious, but sometimes I wish I was.” I hear you!!


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