AP Latin : Passage Comprehension in Caesar

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for AP Latin

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Example Questions

Example Question #11 : Caesar

After being warned of an imminent attack by the Gauls, Caesar’s men debate whether to stay in their camp or attempt to join another unit.

1 Lucius Aurunculeius compluresque tribuni militum et primorum ordinum

2 centuriones nihil temere agendum neque ex hibernis iniussu Caesaris

3 discedendum existimabant: quantasvis [magnas] copias etiam Germanorum

4 sustineri posse munitis hibernis docebant: rem esse testimonio, quod

5 primum hostium impetum multis ultro vulneribus illatis fortissime 

6 sustinuerint: re frumentaria non premi; interea et ex proximis hibernis et a 

7 Caesare conventura subsidia: postremo quid esse levius aut turpius, quam

8 auctore hoste de summis rebus capere consilium?

Who is NOT included in the group expressing an opinion in lines 1-3?

 

Possible Answers:

Caesar

Lucius Aurunculeius

Tribunes

Centurions

Correct answer:

Caesar

Explanation:

Lucius Aurunculeius, the tribunes of the soldiers ("tribuni militum"), and the centurions ("centuriones") are all the subject of the main verb of the sentence "existimabant" (they believed). Caesar does appear in the sentence, but as a genitive with "iniussu"(without the order of Caesar); the fact that Caesar hasn’t ordered them to leave the camp makes them hesitant. Keep in mind that at this point in the narrative, Caesar is spending the winter elsewhere.

(Passage adapted from Gallic Wars, 5:28)

Example Question #12 : Caesar

(1) Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres, quarum unam incolunt Belgae, aliam Aquitani, tertiam qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. (2) Hi omnes lingua, institutis, legibus inter se differunt. Gallos ab Aquitanis Garumna flumen, a Belgis Matrona et Sequana dividit. (3) Horum omnium fortissimi sunt Belgae, propterea quod a cultu atque humanitate provinciae longissime absunt, minimeque ad eos mercatores saepe commeant atque ea quae ad effeminandos animos pertinent important, (4) proximique sunt Germanis, qui trans Rhenum incolunt, quibuscum continenter bellum gerunt. Qua de causa Helvetii quoque reliquos Gallos virtute praecedunt, quod fere cotidianis proeliis cum Germanis contendunt, cum aut suis finibus eos prohibent aut ipsi in eorum finibus bellum gerunt. (5) Eorum una pars, quam Gallos obtinere dictum est, initium capit a flumine Rhodano, continetur Garumna flumine, Oceano, finibus Belgarum, attingit etiam ab Sequanis et Helvetiis flumen Rhenum, vergit ad septentriones. (6) Belgae ab extremis Galliae finibus oriuntur, pertinent ad inferiorem partem fluminis Rheni, spectant in septentrionem et orientem solem. (7) Aquitania a Garumna flumine ad Pyrenaeos montes et eam partem Oceani quae est ad Hispaniam pertinet; spectat inter occasum solis et septentriones.

What is happening in part 1?

Possible Answers:

The Belgae are at war with the Aquitani and Celtae

There are three different countries called "Gallia"

Caesar describes the 3 tribes of Gallia

The reader learns that the Belgae, Aquitani, and Celtae speak different languages

Correct answer:

Caesar describes the 3 tribes of Gallia

Explanation:

The first part of part 1 "Gallia...tres" translates: Gallia is divided into three parts. The rest of the passage goes on to describe the three different tribes: the Belgae, Aquitani, and Celtae. The usage of the word incolunt tells you that Caesar is talking about the three tribes living in Gallia, which the Romans refer to as Gallia as a whole ("nostra...appellantur," that are called "Galls" by us). Even though the language of the Celtae is mentioned, Caesar does not claim that they all speak different languages. The correct choice is, "Caesar describes the 3 tribes of Gallia."

Passage adapted from De Bello Gallico by Caesar, I. 1-7

Example Question #13 : Caesar

(1) Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres, quarum unam incolunt Belgae, aliam Aquitani, tertiam qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. (2) Hi omnes lingua, institutis, legibus inter se differunt. Gallos ab Aquitanis Garumna flumen, a Belgis Matrona et Sequana dividit. (3) Horum omnium fortissimi sunt Belgae, propterea quod a cultu atque humanitate provinciae longissime absunt, minimeque ad eos mercatores saepe commeant atque ea quae ad effeminandos animos pertinent important, (4) proximique sunt Germanis, qui trans Rhenum incolunt, quibuscum continenter bellum gerunt. Qua de causa Helvetii quoque reliquos Gallos virtute praecedunt, quod fere cotidianis proeliis cum Germanis contendunt, cum aut suis finibus eos prohibent aut ipsi in eorum finibus bellum gerunt. (5) Eorum una pars, quam Gallos obtinere dictum est, initium capit a flumine Rhodano, continetur Garumna flumine, Oceano, finibus Belgarum, attingit etiam ab Sequanis et Helvetiis flumen Rhenum, vergit ad septentriones. (6) Belgae ab extremis Galliae finibus oriuntur, pertinent ad inferiorem partem fluminis Rheni, spectant in septentrionem et orientem solem. (7) Aquitania a Garumna flumine ad Pyrenaeos montes et eam partem Oceani quae est ad Hispaniam pertinet; spectat inter occasum solis et septentriones.

The Garumna, Matrona, and Sequana (part 2) are examples of ________________.

Possible Answers:

rivers

tribes

countries

cities

Correct answer:

rivers

Explanation:

The words Garumna, Matrona, and Sequana are all examples of rivers. Looking at the grammar and context of the passage, you can tell that these three words modify the noun flumen. The fact that they are capitalized in the passage mean that they name something. The endings of all 3 is -a, which, considering all declensions and cases, can either be nominative singular, ablative singular, nominative plural, or accusative plural. These words don't make much sense in the ablative case, so that leaves nominative case as the only option, of which the only other nominative word is flumen. The correct choice is "rivers."

Passage adapted from De Bello Gallico by Caesar, I. 1-7

Example Question #14 : Caesar

(1) Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres, quarum unam incolunt Belgae, aliam Aquitani, tertiam qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. (2) Hi omnes lingua, institutis, legibus inter se differunt. Gallos ab Aquitanis Garumna flumen, a Belgis Matrona et Sequana dividit. (3) Horum omnium fortissimi sunt Belgae, propterea quod a cultu atque humanitate provinciae longissime absunt, minimeque ad eos mercatores saepe commeant atque ea quae ad effeminandos animos pertinent important, (4) proximique sunt Germanis, qui trans Rhenum incolunt, quibuscum continenter bellum gerunt. Qua de causa Helvetii quoque reliquos Gallos virtute praecedunt, quod fere cotidianis proeliis cum Germanis contendunt, cum aut suis finibus eos prohibent aut ipsi in eorum finibus bellum gerunt. (5) Eorum una pars, quam Gallos obtinere dictum est, initium capit a flumine Rhodano, continetur Garumna flumine, Oceano, finibus Belgarum, attingit etiam ab Sequanis et Helvetiis flumen Rhenum, vergit ad septentriones. (6) Belgae ab extremis Galliae finibus oriuntur, pertinent ad inferiorem partem fluminis Rheni, spectant in septentrionem et orientem solem. (7) Aquitania a Garumna flumine ad Pyrenaeos montes et eam partem Oceani quae est ad Hispaniam pertinet; spectat inter occasum solis et septentriones.

In the underlined portion, the reader learns that _________________.

Possible Answers:

the Belgae are the largest tribe in Gallia

the Belgae have the most land in Gallia

the Belgae are the most friendly tribe in Gallia

the Belgae are the strongest tribe in Gallia

Correct answer:

the Belgae are the strongest tribe in Gallia

Explanation:

The words "Horum...Belgae" translate: Of all of these (tribes), the Belgae are the strongest. In this part of the passage, we learn that the Belgae are the strongest tribe in Gallia.

Passage adapted from De Bello Gallico by Caesar, I. 1-7

Example Question #15 : Caesar

(1) Apud Helvetios longe nobilissimus fuit et ditissimus Orgetorix. Is M. Messala, [et P.] M. Pisone consulibus regni cupiditate inductus coniurationem nobilitatis fecit et civitati persuasit ut de finibus suis cum omnibus copiis exirent:(2) perfacile esse, cum virtute omnibus praestarent, totius Galliae imperio potiri. (3) Id hoc facilius iis persuasit, quod undique loci natura Helvetii continentur: una ex parte flumine Rheno latissimo atque altissimo, qui agrum Helvetium a Germanis dividit; altera ex parte monte Iura altissimo, qui est inter Sequanos et Helvetios; tertia lacu Lemanno et flumine Rhodano, qui provinciam nostram ab Helvetiis dividit. (4) His rebus fiebat ut et minus late vagarentur et minus facile finitimis bellum inferre possent; (5) qua ex parte homines bellandi cupidi magno dolore adficiebantur. (6) Pro multitudine autem hominum et pro gloria belli atque fortitudinis angustos se fines habere arbitrabantur, qui in longitudinem milia passuum CCXL, in latitudinem CLXXX patebant.

In the underlined portion, the reader learns that ________________.

Possible Answers:

Orgetorix is the most noble Helvetian

Orgetorix is poor

the Helvetians have the most land

the Helvetians are the most noble tribe

Correct answer:

Orgetorix is the most noble Helvetian

Explanation:

The lines apud...Orgetorix translate: "Among the Helvetii, the most noble and rich was Orgetorix, by far." Orgetorix is the most rich and noble Helvetian.
Passage adapted from De Bello Gallico by Caesar, I. 2.1-6

Example Question #16 : Caesar

(1) Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres, quarum unam incolunt Belgae, aliam Aquitani, tertiam qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. (2) Hi omnes lingua, institutis, legibus inter se differunt. Gallos ab Aquitanis Garumna flumen, a Belgis Matrona et Sequana dividit. (3) Horum omnium fortissimi sunt Belgae, propterea quod a cultu atque humanitate provinciae longissime absunt, minimeque ad eos mercatores saepe commeant atque ea quae ad effeminandos animos pertinent important, (4) proximique sunt Germanis, qui trans Rhenum incolunt, quibuscum continenter bellum gerunt. Qua de causa Helvetii quoque reliquos Gallos virtute praecedunt, quod fere cotidianis proeliis cum Germanis contendunt, cum aut suis finibus eos prohibent aut ipsi in eorum finibus bellum gerunt. (5) Eorum una pars, quam Gallos obtinere dictum est, initium capit a flumine Rhodano, continetur Garumna flumine, Oceano, finibus Belgarum, attingit etiam ab Sequanis et Helvetiis flumen Rhenum, vergit ad septentriones. (6) Belgae ab extremis Galliae finibus oriuntur, pertinent ad inferiorem partem fluminis Rheni, spectant in septentrionem et orientem solem. (7) Aquitania a Garumna flumine ad Pyrenaeos montes et eam partem Oceani quae est ad Hispaniam pertinet; spectat inter occasum solis et septentriones.

What/who is the subject of the verb prohibent (part 4)?

Possible Answers:

The Germans

The Helvetii

The Celtae

The Belgae

Correct answer:

The Helvetii

Explanation:

The last tribe/entity mentioned in the passage were the Helvetii. Since then, there hasn't been a switch in subject. The context of the passage tells you that Caesar is still talking about the Helvetii here.

Passage adapted from De Bello Gallico by Caesar, I. 1-7

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