What Does Declension Mean?

16-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Wednesday, January 10, 1912: There is sleighing now, but all the same, I haven’t got a ride yet. Began with our monthly exams today. I had a hard declension down pat in Latin, but it happened to be excluded in the number of questions.

Rachel and Al were down this evening. I wish I knew all about the questions tomorrow.

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

I learned a new word today. Declension means the change of form in some languages that nouns, pronouns, and adjectives undergo to indicate distinctions such as gender, number, person, and tense.

Rachel Oakes was a friend of Grandma and her sister Ruth. Al was Rachel’s brother. They lived on a nearby farm.

2 thoughts on “What Does Declension Mean?

  1. Oh, I remember Latin. I nearly failed both years; but when I got to Spanish the next two years, it was a breeze. Something must have stuck. Too bad your grandmother’s memorized declension was excluded. I guess we’ll find out in a few days how she did on the exams.

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