Intensive Adjectives and Pronouns
In our earlier discussion of personal pronouns, you read that the nominative case forms of personal pronouns were redundant since the personal endings (for first and second person, anyway) were distinct. The function of the nominative case for personal pronouns, then, was to emphasize. Emphasis is the only role of intensive adjectives. Where demonstrative adjectives point a finger at something, intensive pronouns shake it. Like demonstrative adjectives, intensives can also be used as pronouns.
Ipse, ipsa, ipsum
In Latin, ipse is the most important intensive adjective used to show emphasis. In English, we can use tone, when speaking, or, when writing, use italics or underlining. There are also a couple of ways to phrase emphasis by adding words. Unfortunately, the words English uses to do what ipse does are usually used to show other things, so some awkwardness and confusion can occur.
One way is to use the word “very,” as in “My grandfather used to live in this very house [as opposed to any other].” (Avus meus in hā c domū ipsā habitā bat.) The other way is more confusing than awkward. It requires a “-self” word. The confusion arises in that English also uses -self words as reflexives, even though the two uses are extremely different. “I myself [as opposed to anyone else] used to live in this house, too.” (Et ego ipse in hā c domū habitā bam.)
As always, context will be your best guide.
Table 13-8 Declension of the Intensive Adjective ipse, ipsa, ipsum
After iste and ille, the declension of ipse should come as no surprise.
ī dem, eadem, idem
The intensive adjective ī dem can be used the same way as ipse, but its true meaning lies closer to the English word “same.” “My grandfather used to live in this same house [as opposed to any other].” (Avus meus in hā c domū eā dem habitā bat.)
This word has a peculiar declension.
Table 13-9 Declension of the Demonstrative Adjective ī dem, eadem, idem
You have, no doubt, already noticed what is peculiar about ī dem — it declines on the inside! Or so it seems. The intensive adjective ī dem is really is with the suffix -dem attached. The influence of the suffix creates a few changes in the forms of is that you should be aware of. First, the masculine nominative singular is missing the s. Second, for all forms of is that end with m (accusative singular and genitive plural), the m changes to n, so ea m + dem gives you ea ndem. This occurs to make the word easier to say.