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nervus, i, m. [root snar-; Old Germ. snara, a snare; Gr. νεῦρον; cf. parvus and παῦρος], a sinew, tendon, nerve.

I. Lit.: his adde nervos, a quibus artus continentur, Cic. N. D. 2, 55, 139: hoc nervos confirmari putant, Caes. B. G. 6, 20: nervus qui platys appellatur, Plin. 26, 8, 58, 90: hic primum nervos et venas expressit (of Pythagoras the painter), id. 34, 8, 19, 59: nervorum contractio, Sen. Ep. 66, 40: nervi quos τένοντας Graeci appellant, Cels. 8, 1: condamus alter alterum in nervum bracchialem, let us embrace, Plaut. Poen. 5, 4, 99.—

B. Transf.

1. I. q. membrum virile, Hor. Epod. 12, 19; Juv. 10, 205; 9, 35; pl. nervi, Petr. 131, 4 and 6.—

2. A string of a musical instrument: omnes voces, ut nervi in fidibus, ita sonant, ut, etc., Cic. de Or. 3, 57, 216: cotidiano cantu vocum et nervorum et tibiarum tota vicinitas personat, id. Rosc. Am. 46, 134; Verg. A. 9, 776; Hor. C. 3, 11, 4.—

3. A bowstring: reciproca tendens nervo equino concita tela, Att. ap. Varr. L. L. 7, 80 Müll. (Trag. Rel. p. 176 Rib.): nervoque obversus equino Contendit telum, Verg. A. 9, 622: nervo aptare sagittas, id. ib. 10, 131: erumpit nervo pulsante sagitta, id. G. 4, 313; so Val. Fl. 6, 376; 1, 437; Luc. 7, 141.—

b. A bow: aliquem fallere nervo, Val. Fl. 3, 182.—

4. The leather with which shields were covered: scuta nervo firmata, Tac. A. 2, 14; Sil. 4, 293.—

5. A thong with which a person was bound, Plaut. Curc. 5, 3, 11; Veg. Mil. 4, 9.—

6. The cords or wires by which a puppet is moved: duceris ut nervis alienis mobile lignum, Hor. S. 2, 7, 82.—

7. A fetter: nervum appellamus etiam ferreum vinculum, quo pedes impediuntur: quamquam Plautus eo etiam cervices vinciri ait: Perfidiose captus edepol nervo cervices probat, Paul. ex Fest. p. 165 Müll.: VINCITO AVT NERVO, AVT COMPEDIBVS, Lex XII. Tab. ap. Gell. 20, 1: in nervo atque compedibus aetatem agunt, Cato ap. Gell. 11, 18, 18; cf. Plaut. As. 3, 2, 5: posuit in nervo pedes meos, Vulg. Job, 33, 11.—

b. A prison: in nervum aliquem rapere, Plaut. Capt. 5, 3, 45: in nervo jacebis, id. Curc. 5, 3, 40; cf. id. Capt. 3, 5, 71: vereor ne istaec fortitudo in nervum erumpat denique, will lay you by the heels, bring you into durance, Ter. Phorm. 2, 2, 10; 4, 4, 15: eximere de nervo aliquem, Liv. 6, 15, 9: misit in nervum, Vulg. Jer. 20, 2.—

II. Trop.

A. Nerve, vigor, force, power, strength: digna res est ubi tu nervos intendas tuos, Ter. Eun. 2, 3, 20: onus ... dignum, in quo omnes nervos aetatis industriaeque meae contenderem, Cic. Verr. 1, 12, 35: omnibus nervis mihi contendendum est, ut, etc., id. ib. 2, 3, 56, 130: opibus ac nervis ad perniciem suam uti, Caes. B. G. 1, 20; Cic. Phil. 5, 12, 32: nervi belli pecunia, id. ib. 5, 2, 5: vectigalia nervos esse rei publicae, id. Imp. Pomp. 7, 17: legionum nervos incidere, id. Phil. 12, 3, 8: poëtae molliunt animos, nervos omnes virtutis elidunt, id. Tusc. 2, 11, 27: video, fore nervis opus sapientiāque tuā, id. Fam. 3, 10, 1: loci inhaerentes in nervis causarum, intimately connected with them, id. de Or. 3, 27, 106: nervi conjurationis, the leaders, Liv. 7, 39, 6.—

B. In partic., of expression, force, energy: horum oratio neque nervos, neque aculeos oratorios ac forenses habet, Cic. Or. 19, 62; cf. id. de Or. 3, 21, 80: nervi in dicendo, id. ib. 2, 22, 91: sectantem levia nervi Deficiunt, Hor. A. P. 26.