When, speaking English, we often ask questions which are looking for a simple, answer 'Yes' or 'No', and the manner in which we pose the question sometimes signals clearly to the respondent which answer we are expecting to receive, often indicating thereby the attitude or viewpoint of the questioner. Set out below is an analysis of the three types of such questions. Each example in English is translated into Latin and Greek. You will note that English has different forms of asking these questions, depending on the degree of emphasis the questioner wishes to inject. Readers with no previous knowledge of Latin, but who have heard references to 'Nonne' or 'Num' questions, will now be able to decipher what this distinction means.
Seen through a grille of squares, the sky,
Is split up, intersected, neat,
Closely related, tree and cloud,
Rooftop and spire trick the eye
To think geometry complete,
To make the world an ordered crowd
Of lines and squares, intensify
Rationalism in defeat.
This is another way to shroud
An ill-conceived complexity
Beneath a simple form, replete
With all the errors of the proud,
Who hope, by thinking, to retain
A cosmos in their compassed brain....