Pope Francis's coat of arms has the phrase miserando atque eligendo. My knowledge of Latin grammar has faded, but if I recall correctly, this phrase uses two gerunds.

I think one translation is "by having mercy and by choosing". I like this translation. What I would like to know, though, is what exactly is a gerund, what are the different ways of translating these gerunds, and what are the different ways of translating this motto?

I suspect someone may complain that these topics are easily searchable, but beggars can't be choosers, and we on Latin Stack Exchange are beggars when it comes to questions :) So please forgive me for not searching this on Google.

  • Oh, I’m sorry. Feel free to close this question or mark as a duplicate. Thanks for the reference and my apology for not searching the forum first.
    – ktm5124
    Commented Sep 15, 2019 at 18:51
  • 1
    No problem! There's nothing wrong with a duplicate question, and in fact the new version increases the visibility of all the information in the older one.
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    Commented Sep 15, 2019 at 20:31
  • @JoonasIlmavirta It also reminded me to accept the answer to the first question—the one that took almost two years to show up!
    – Ben Kovitz
    Commented Sep 19, 2019 at 23:59


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