Latin Quotes, Sayings, Tattoos, Phrases & Mottos

Most texts and materials on this site have to do with the Latin language, including its perception in popular culture: movies, tattoos, inscriptions, engravings, bits of ancient philosophy, online Latin resources and company names. There is also information about learning Latin and Greek: textbooks, dictionaries, DVDs and software that can be used in a homeschooling environment.


Knights Templar motto

 
Non nobis, Domine, non nobis, sed nomini tuo da gloriam! - Not unto us, o Lord, not unto us, but unto your name grant glory!

When I decided to see how often this phrase from Psalm 113 was used in the Middle Ages I discovered that it really was not all that popular until Berndard de Clairvaux started using in his sermons and writings. He apparently really liked this short prayer that eventually became the motto of the Knights Templar, being displayed on their black and white banner, the Bauseant.

Another Church writer who favored this phrase was Augustine. I would not be surprised if Bernard was heavily influenced by his works, but I am really don't know theology well enough to be a judge of this.

Proklean as in...?

 
Friday, January 25, 2008, 07:36 - Etymology and word roots, World History: Ancient, Medieval & Modern
Posted by Administrator
Here is another curious company name. Proklean is an Australian company that makes all sorts of cleaning products (http://www.proklean.com.au). Why did they name themselves with a k in klean? Perhaps someone else had already registered Proclean (which is highly likely). Or could it be that they did not want to be thought of as supporters of the Proclean (after Proclus) trend in Neo-Platonism? That was, of course, my first thought upon accidentally discovering this name, because in Greek we would naturally see a K in this case, as in any other.

Engraved promise ring

 


After making a special page with a nice selection of what can be justly seen as promise ring poems I decided to dig a little deeper. Needless to say, Elizabethan English folk did not invent the art of inscribing rings to be given as pledges of love. Here is a simple inscription from an old Roman ring:

PIGNUS AMORIS HABES - "You have the pledge of love!"

The engraved emblem on the ring is probably that of a dolphin or a fish. I have to consult with my books on symbols about the meaning of this. The Christian interpretation, of course, would involve fish as a symbol of Christ.

Sure, the inscription does not rhyme or anything... Ancient Romans pretty much did not have a conception of a rhyme.

See also:
Modern promise (purity) ring: "True love waits"
What to Engrave of a Wedding Ring?
Promise rings: History and meaning
P.S. It has been confirmed that the fish-like image on this engraved ring is indeed a dolphin, in agreement with popular misconception regarding this aquatic mammal.
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A variation of the 'Quod me nutrit me destruit' theme

 


'Nutrisco et extinguo' - I feed and extinguish.

This is from an old "Devises Heroiques". The explanation is that salamanders can extinguish fire with their frigid bodies, but they also feed on its flames.

More info about 'Quod me nutrit me destruit'

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