the Later Latin Society

Latin Verbs

accidô, accidere, accidîhappen

   active singular       active plural   
 present indicativeaccidôaccidimus
 imperfect indicative accidêbamaccidêbâmus
 future indicativeaccidamaccidêmus
 perfect indicativeaccidîaccidimus
acciditaccidêrunt (-re)
 pluperfect indicative accideramacciderâmus
  future perf. indic.acciderôacciderimus
 present subjunctiveaccidamaccidâmus
 imperfect subjunctiveaccideremacciderêmus
 perfect subjunctiveacciderimacciderimus
 pluperfect subjunctiveaccidissemaccidissêmus
        2, 3acciditôacciditôte
        presentaccidêns (-tis)

*declines regularly—like bonus (-a, -um).

gerund: accidendî, –ô, um, –ô

2. ac-cido, cîdi, no sup., 3, v. n. [cado], to fall upon or down upon a thing, to reach it by falling.
I. Lit. A. In gen. constr. with ad, in , local adverbs, with dat. or absol.: utinam ne accidisset abiegna ad terram trabes, Enn. ap. Auct. Her. 2, 22 (Trag. p. 281 ed. Vahl., where it is: accēdisset, acc. to the MSS., v. Vahl. N. v.): signa de caelo ad terram, Plaut. Rud. prol. 8; so, tam crebri ad terram accidebant quam pira, id. Poen. 2, 38: trabs in humum accidens, Varr. ap. Non. 494 fin; so, imago aetheris ex oris in terrarum accidat oras, Lucr. 4, 215: rosa in mensas, Ov. F. 5, 360: quo Castalia per struices saxeas lapsu accidit, Liv. Andr. ap. Fest. p. 310 Müll. (Rib. Trag. Rel. p. 5): ut missa tela gravius acciderent, fall upon, hit, Caes. B. G. 3, 14; so Liv. 2, 50, 7.—B. Esp.: a. ad genua or genibus, of a suppliant, to fall at one's knees: me orat mulier lacrimansque ad genua accidit, Enn. ap. Non. 517, 15 (Com. v. 9 ed. Vahl.); so Ter. Hec. 3, 3, 18; Suet. Caes. 20; id. Claud. 10; for which: genibus praetoris, Liv. 44, 31; also: ad pedes, Cic. Att. 1, 14, 5, and absol.: quo accĭdam? quo applicem? Enn. ap. Cic. Tusc. 3, 19, 44 (Trag. v. 114 ed. Vahl., where it is accēdam).—C. Transf., to strike the senses, to reach a thing by means of the senses, constr. with ad, the dat. or : vox, sermo accidit ad auris (or auribus; also, auris alicujus), the voice, the speech falls upon or reaches the ear: nota vox ad auris accidit, Att. ap. Non. 39, 5: nova res molitur ad auris accidere, Lucr. 2, 1024; and: nihil tam populare ad populi Romani auris accidisse, Cic. Sest. 50, 107: auribus, Liv. 24, 46, 5; Quint. 12, 10, 75: auris, Plaut. Stich. 1, 2, 31; absol., Liv. 10, 5, 2; 27, 15, 16 sq.; Curt. 4, 4, 5 al.; cf. also: clamor accidit ad auris, Liv. 26, 40, 10; and absol.: clamor accidit, id. 4, 33, 9; 40, 32, 2; likewise: nomen famaque alicujus accidit ad aliquem, id. 21, 10, 12; v. Fabri ad h. l.—Hence sometimes in Livy: vox fama accidit (ad auris or ad aliquem), with an acc. c. inf.: ut vox etiam ad hostes accideret captum Cominium esse, Liv. 10, 41, 7: quia repente fama accidit classem Punicam adventare, the report came, id. 27, 29, 7; v. Weissenb. a. h. l.
II. Fig. A. In gen., to fall out, come to pass, happen, occur; and with dat. pers., to happen to, to befall one. (The distinction between the syn. evenio, accido, and contingo is this: evenio, i.e. ex-venio, is used of either fortunate or unfortunate events: accido of occurrences which take us by surprise; hence it is used either of an indifferent, or, which is its general use, of an unfortunate occurrence: contingo, ie, contango, indicates that an event accords with one's wishes; and hence is generally used of fortunate events. As Isid. says, Differ. 1: Contingunt bona: accidunt mala: eveniunt utraque): res accidit, Caes. B. G. 1, 14; Id acciderat, ut Galli consilium caperent, ib. 3, 2: si quid adversi acciderit, Cic. Ac. 2, 38, 121; cf. ib. 1, 26, 57: nollem accidisset tempus, in quo, etc., id. Fam. 3, 10: si qua calamitas accidisset, id. Verr. 2, 3, 55: id. Rosc. Am. 34: contra opinionem accidit, Caes. B. G. 3, 9: pejus Sequanis accidit, ib. 1, 31: periculum accidit, ib. 3, 3: detrimentum accidit, ib. 7, 52. Also of fortunate occurrences: omnia tibi accidisse gratissima, Cic. Fam. 3, 1 ; 11, 15: accidit satis opportune, Caes. B. G. 4, 22 ; cf. Brem. Nep. Milt. 1, 1; Herz. Caes. B. G. 7, 3.—Constr. with ut (Zumpt, § 621), sometimes with quod: accidit perincommode, quod eum nusquam vidisti, Cic. Att. 1, 17; or with inf.: nec enim acciderat mihi opus esse, id. Fam. 6, 11. Pleonast. in narrations: accidit ut, it happened, or came to pass, that: accidit ut una nocte omnes Hermae dejicerentur, it happened that, etc., Nep. Alc. 3, 2; so Cic. Fam. 3, 8, 8; id. Att. 1, 5, 4 al.—B. In part. 1. Si quid cui accidat, or si quid humanitus accidat, euphemist. for to die; if any thing should happen to one (for which Ennius says: si quid me fuerit humanitus, Ann. v. 128 ed. Vahl.): si quid pupillo accidisset, Cic. Inv. 2, 21; Caes. B. G. 1, 18; si quid mihi humanitus accidisset, Cic. Phil. 1, 4 ; Dig. 34, 4, 30 § 2 al. (cf. the Greek έί τι παθοι); so, per aposiopesin, sive—quod heu timeo, sive superstes eris, Ov. Her. 13, 164. (But Cic. Mil. 22, 58; Caes. B. G. 2, 35, and similar passages, are to be taken in the usual signif.)—2. To turn out (this very rare): timeo "incertum" hoc quorsum accidat, Ter. And. 1, 5, 29: si secus acciderit, Cic. Fam. 6, 21, 2.—3. In gram., to belong to: plurima huic (verbo) accidunt (i.e. genus, tempora), Quint. 1, 5, 41 al.

from the 1933 impression of the first edition (Oxford, 1879) of A Latin Dictionary Founded on Andrew's Edition of Freund's Latin Dictionary Revised, Enlarged, and in Great Part Rewritten by Charlton T. Lewis, Ph.D. and Charles Short, LL.D.

The verbs accidit, 'it happens'; evenit, 'it turns out'; contingit, 'it falls to one's lot', are followed by a dative of the person to whom the thing happens, but normally have a consecutive ut-clause standing as subject […]. An infinitive or accusative and infinitive is very rare with these verbs, unless they are modified by an adverb, e.g. Plaut. Cist. 309 opportune mi evenit redisse Alcesimarchum. 'It has happened luckily for me that Alcesimarchus has returned." Also Cic. pro Caec. 8. More often, when an adverb is present, an indicative quod-clause stands as subject: Cic. Att 1, 17, 2 accidit perincommode quod eum nusquam vidisiti. 'It happens very inconveniently that you have seen him nowhere.'

from A New Latin Syntax by E.C. Woodcock, MA (London, 1959), p. 169.


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