Ordinatio come ordine lineare delle parti del discorso o struttura sintattica?

  • Roberta Meneghel University of Verona
Keywords: ordinatio, syntax, structure, linearity, hierarchy


In Institutiones, Priscian mentions the term ordinatio (39 items) with
some different references. Sometimes it is used as synonym of constructio or
structura, otherwise it occurs in the definition of oratio. Browsing through some
modern translations of this famous sentence, it is possible to notice several
interpretations: for example, ordinatio is understood as ‘ordering of individual
words’ (Reynolds, 1996: 88), similarly also in German language ‘stimmige An-
ordnung der Wörter’ (Beuerle, 2010: 279), but also it is rendered as ‘gram-
matical arrangement’ (Mora-Márquez, 2015: 111), or in French ‘combination
de mots’ (Baratin, 1989: 377). Therefore, one could guess that this term refers
to either a linear word order (GL III 17.164.16: ordinatio recta; cf. Kneep-
kens, 1987; 1990: 156) or a kind of government (GL III 17.200.26). The aim
of this paper is to analyse item by item the occurrences considering modern
approaches to syntax, not because we want to show an overlap between the
current theory of Linguistics and the ancient grammatical thought, but because
it could be possible to understand better the complexity of antique notions by
means of our metalinguistic tools.