1. Hi! I thought I left a comment a few days ago, but I may not have submitted it. Your posts are very helpful! I did my undergrad in classical languages thirty years ago, and my Latin grammar is rusty. I’m working on compiling an answer key/teachers manual for a particular curriculum and every once in a while my translations clash with the answer key from the publisher.

    Eos certiores fecit quis se secutus esset.

    I have “He informed them who had followed *him.*”
    The answer key has “He informed them who had followed *them.*”

    Since the subject of the main clause is *he,* I assume the reflexive in the indirect question refers back to “he.” I’m not sure how the reflexive pronoun can have the antecedent *they* since *they* is the subject of neither the main clause nor the indirect question. Am I totally misunderstanding reflexives?

    1. Hi Sarah, sorry it has taken me a few days to get back to you! I can see on the back end that you did submit another comment but I hadn’t had a chance to approve it. Anyway, to answer your question: I agree with your translation and analysis. The answer key is wrong.

      In subordinate clauses such as “quis sē secūtus esset”, there are two possible uses of reflexives: 1) direct (where the reflexive refers to the subject of the subordinate clause) and 2) indirect (where the reflexive refers to the subject of the main clause). In this case, “sē” could refer back to EITHER “quis” (direct reflexive) OR the implied subject of “fēcit” (indirect reflexive).

      So, as you say, *them* should not be an option for “sē” in this instance. I believe what is happening in your answer key is that someone has confused the role of reflexives and assumed that “sē” can refer to “eōs,” the direct object in the main clause. This does not make sense grammatically.

      “He informed them who had followed *them*” would need to be “Eōs certiōrēs fēcit quis *eōs* secūtus esset.” As the sentence stands, “sē” most logically refers to *him*, i.e. the speaker in the main clause.

      I hope this helps! I think you have a great understanding of reflexives 🙂

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