The Wooden Horse. Part 6. As we await the October 1 arrival of Legonium pars tertia, here is some complete nonsense in 12 parts.
From the translation of The Aeneid, Book II by John Dryden
The Trojans, coop'd within their walls so long,
Unbar their gates, and issue in a throng,
Like swarming bees, and with delight survey
The camp deserted, where the Grecians lay:
There was their fleet conceal'd. We thought, for Greece
Their sails were hoisted, and our fears release.
Part on the pile their wond'ring eyes employ:
The pile by Pallas rais'd to ruin Troy.
mox : mox is another adverb. It means ‘soon’.
Troiani : Troianus is an adjective meaning ‘Trojan’, but in this sentence the adjective is playing the part of a noun. This is far more common in Latin than in English, but English does have its examples. Think of ‘Only the good die young.’ By being masculine and plural, Troiani shows itself to mean ‘Trojan men or people’. It is nominative to show itself to be the subject of the verb.
equum ligneum: equus ligneus means ‘wooden horse’. We have seen these words together a few times now, so let’s deal with equum ligneum as a single ‘noun phrase’. It is in the accusative case to indicate that it is the object of the verb and it means, of course, ‘wooden horse’.
ante : ante is a preposition, so we need to know both what it means and what case it is followed by. It means ‘before’ or ‘in front of’ and is followed by the accusative case.
moenia : moenia is one of a relatively small group of Latin nouns that only appears in the plural form. It means ‘the walls or fortifications of a city’. Here it is in the accusative case, to indicate that it forms a prepositional phrase together with ante.
vident : videre is a verb that means ‘to see’. It is third person plural because its subject Troiani is third person plural also. It is in the present tense to create a sense of excitement.
Translation: Soon the Trojans saw the wooden horse before the city’s walls.