Am toying with an idea for my next project. Remember those old-fashioned grammars of heavily infected languages with reams of paradigms for declensions, conjugations, and agreement rules--not to mention irregular forms? Generally, these grammars had a teeny tiny half page about syntax at the end. I am thinking of writing a grammar of a fictitious language called "Old High Middle Arcanian" with a similar format, though the syntax section is going to have to be longer than in the actual grammars I referred to.

Since this project is (ultimately) tongue-in-cheek, I wonder what other features I should add to my reference grammar to do justice to the old-fashioned format that I've chosen.

  • Modern texts for learning Lithuanian might be helpful. Of course it depends on the specific features of OHMA.
    – Theodore
    Feb 10 at 15:35

2 Answers 2


General Scheme

You've pretty much got it! I use the same general framework found in Wright's grammars (Germanic) and Allen & Greenough (Latin):

Phonology (pronunciation, accentuation)
Accidence (all the paradigms)
Miscellaneous (writing system, numerals, etc)
Two Way Lexicon
Topical Index


Not having my Latin School grammar anymore I remember the following structure and features:

First comes a section on phonology, but it is not called that, but something like "Writing system and pronunciation".

Second part is a longish section on morphology (called Formenlehre in my German based school grammar, but that is essentially the same) Exposing the morphology and inflection paradigms of nouns, adjectives, and verbs. The fully irregular verbs (like ire, ferre, velle, nolle, malle, and fieri) are included here, and there is mention of defective paradigms and deponent verbs. The long list of verbs with their principal parts is relegated to an appendix in the end of the grammar.

Third comes a part on the usage and translation of the different forms, differentiating the cases in many subtypes like objective and subjective and partitive genitive, and so on.

Fourth comes a part on some famous Latin constructions, like accusative with infinitive, double accusative, absolute ablative, and joined participle.

Fifth is a part on conjunctions and what mode of the verb they govern. It was rather lengthy, especially on conjunctions like ut, cum and quod.

There is also a chapter on relative clauses.

Somewhere was a list of prepositions with the cases they govern, but I don't remember its placement. Also a list of basic parts of speech was somewhere.

That's what I remember right now.

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