I thought I was the most nitty of the nitpickers ... especially with matters of Stooge origins. But I've been doing some light reading titled "Carpe Diem ... Put a Little Latin in Your Life" by Harry Mount, and he has sited a nitpick that must rank as the "nano-nitpick" of the century ... he refers to the movie "The Life of Brian" by Monty Python in which Brian is instructed to strike out against the Romans to prove his worth in joining an anti-Roman cult. Here is the passage:
Brian approaches the palace to graffiti the wall with an anti-Roman slogan. He begins writing, oblivious to the Roman patrol approaching from behind.
Centurion: What's this then? "Romanes eunt domus"? "People called Romanes they go to the house"?
Brian: It says, "Romans go home".
Centurion: No it doesn't. What's Latin for "Roman"? (Brian hesitates) Come on, come on!
Brian: (uncertain) ... "Romanos"?
Centurion: Goes like ...?
Brian: ... "anos".
Centurion: Vocative plural of "anos" is ...?
Brian: ... "ane". (Centurion takes paintbrush from Brian and paints over)
Centurion: "Romane" ... "Eunt", what's "Eunt"?
Centurion: Conjugate the verb "to go".
Brian: "ire ... eo, is, it, imus, itis, eunt."
Centurion: So "eunt" is ...?
Brian: Third person, plural, present, indicative ... they go.
Centurion: But "Romans go home" is an order, so you must use the ...? (lifts Brian by the hair)
Brian: ... the ... imperative.
Centurion: Which is ...?
Brian: umm ... oh, oh! ... ee, ee!
Centurion: How many Romans? (pulls harder)
Brian: ... plural, plural! ... ite! (Centurion strikes over eunt and paints ite on the wall)
Centurion: (satisfied) "Ite" ... "Domus" ... nominative? ... Go home? This motion is towards, isn't it boy?
Brian: (very anxious) ... dative? (Centurion draws sword and holds it to Brian's throat) ... Ahh, no ... ablative, ablative, sir! ... no, the accusative, accusative ... ahh ... domum, sir!
Centurion: Except that "domus" takes the ...?
Brian: ... the locative, sir!
Centurion: Which is ...?
Centurion: (Satisfied) "Domum". (strikes out domus and writes domum) ... "mum". Understand?
Brian: Yes, sir.
Centurion: Now write it down a hundred times.
Brian: Yes, sir, thank you, sir. Hail Caesar, sir.
Centurion: (Salutes) Hail, Caesar. If its not done by sunrise, I'll cut your balls off.
Actually, John Cleese's centurion wasn't quite right. Yes, "domus" behaves oddly, and yes, "Romane Ete Domum" is right, but it isn't the locative that Brian used. The locative is a strange one-off case used only when you are at or in the place. And the locative of "Domus" meaning "at home" is "Domi".