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.


"Spartacus: Blood and Sand" - word of caution regarding the "Fugitivus" tattoo

 
Saturday, January 29, 2011, 12:11 - Latin Language, Popular Latin Phrases, Mottos, Slogans
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According to the makers of the Starz series "Spartacus: Blood and Sand" they employ two historical consultants. Perhaps one of them should have noticed that the tattoo gracing the forehead of the gladiator named Kerza is quite anachronistic. "Fugitivus" is indeed a Latin word for "runaway". Sadly though, the distinction between V and U would have seemed very strange to Romans. The two letters that we all know and love were used in Ancient Rome interchangeably and were never distinguished.Using V for a consonant and U for a vowel is a practice that only began in earnest during Renaissance times. (Wikipedia cites 1386 as the first occurrence, in a Gothic alphabet). As a result the correct way of spelling Fugitivus on poor Kerza's bold forehead would have been FVGITIVVS or FUGITIUUS. Folks, be advised as you decide to adorn your own foreheads with this one-word movie quote!

Three words in Latin!

 
Wednesday, January 19, 2011, 14:45 - Latin Language
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Just a reminder, folks. Given the recent popularity of three word descriptions (threewords.me, anyone?), keep in mind that you can easily come up with Latin tripartite phrases, even if you don't know Latin:

Latin motto generator

By the way, in classical rhetorics three word descriptions are properly called hendiatris.

Good midwifery tip from Pliny

 
Tuesday, November 30, 2010, 12:18 - Jokes and anecdotes, Latin Translation, Medical Latin Terminology
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Ferunt difficiles partus statim solvi, cum quis tectum, in quo sit gravida, transmiserit lapide vel missili ex iis, qui III animalia singulis ictibus interfecerint, hominem, aprum, ursum.

It is said that labor complications are solved at once when a stone that has been used to kill three living souls at three blows: a human being, a boar and a bear, is thrown over the roof of the house where there is a pregnant woman.

(Natural History, 28.33)

Via: Cabinet of Roman Curiosities


King Charles' motto

 
Saturday, November 13, 2010, 13:44 - Poetry, Literature, Music, Popular Latin Phrases, Mottos, Slogans
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Not talking about any historic King Charles here, but rather about the British musician whose stage name betrays his royal aspirations (actually, this makes me wonder whether England has any laws that discourage individuals who call themselves kings or queens). King Charles was part of the opening act during the recent Mumford & Sons tour. Did a pretty nice job, I think. On his MySpace site there is a header with a Latin motto: In mundo, sed non de mundo. - In the world, but not of the world. Note the distinct Christian connotations. Just another idea for someone researching Latin quotes for tattoos, mottos and what have you.

By the way, if anyone finds King Charles' mp3s for sale other than the EP entitled "Alone on the throne", I'd like to know about that.

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