Yes, We Can! / by Anthony Gibbins

There is something empowering about recognising what you can do. And nothing says I’m capable quite like saying I’m capable in Latin.

The word for I can or I am able is possum. Its Principal Parts (it doesn’t get the usual four) are possum, posse, potui. I am able, to be able, I was able.

Let’s look at how we Conjugate possum in the Present Tense. Two of these Forms are used in today’s page.

possum           I am able                                         possumus        we are able

potes               You are able                                   potestis           you (all) are able

potest            he or she or it is able                       possunt           they are able

If you take another look at today’s page, you will see that this Verb works with the Infinitive. emere potes. You are able to buy. tradere possum. I can hand over.

What can you do? If you have a dictionary with an English to Latin section, you can do this. Look up a word, say dance. It will tell you that the Verb that means dance is salto saltare saltavi saltatum. The Infinitive will always be the Second Principal Part. saltare possum! I can dance!

Try it, and leave a Comment declaring what you can do! If you don’t have a dictionary (or even if you do), here are a few ideas to get you started.;

aedificare build clamare shout ambulare walk docere teach ridere laugh videre see canere sing currere run fugere flee loqui speak audire listen legere read scribere write dormire sleep fulgere shine bibere drink discere learn edere eat fremere roar ludere play niti strive quiescere rest sapere be wise natare swim ascendere climb cogitare think amare love pingere paint ire go

Oh, and by the way. How great is Claudia? That is really thoughtful.

Claudia knows that Marcellus wants to sell the picture. ‘If you wish,’ she says, ‘you can buy the picture. I am able to hand over your money to the artist.’