I do not understand Latin at all (though I started learning it with very slow pace due to a lack of time...), but I would like to understand a Latin text. Is there a way to get it translated or to ask someone who can help translate it? It's some kind of church stuff from Vatican, but I cannot find an English or German version I could understand. Is there a way to get that document translated? (The Google translator just produces rubbish...)

It's quite some text (papal decretum) and I am not sure if it is a good idea to post it here and ask for help.

Ex quo Clemens Papa XIII. festum in honorem Sanctissimi Cordis Jesu cum Officio et Missa nonnullis Ecclesiis celebrare permisit, ad immensam Divini hujus Cordis charitatem recolendam tanto ubivis ardore fideles populi se excitatos senserunt, ut nulla jam pene extet Dioecesis, quae privilegium ejusdem festi peragendi ab Apostolica Sede se non impetravisse laetetur.

Id Rmi Galliarum Episcopi attendentes, ut festum fidelium animis adeo jucundum et in omni fere Catholico Orbe tam concordi pietate frequentatum ab universa prorsus Ecclesia amodo celebretur, humillima ea de re vota sua SSmo Domino Nostro Pio PP. IX. per subscriptum Cardinalem, cum nuper in Galliis Legati a Latere munere fungeretur, subjici curarunt. Occassionem namque sibi datam lubenti animo arripientes publicum ac solemne in persona Cardinalis Legati testimonium exhibendi suae erga Sedem Apostolicam venerationis, ipsum Parisiis commorantem ingenti numero convenerunt, intimamque ac plenissimam adhaesionem suam Romano Pontifici veluti Catholicae unitatis Centro et Jesu Cristi in terris Vicario professi, ut festum Sacratissimi Cordis Jesu ad universam extendere dignaretur Ecclesiam enixis precibus postulavere.


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    Unfortunately, there is no good machine translator for Latin. If you're curious about a particular part of a translation, feel free to post it here--but this probably isn't the best place to look for a long translation.
    – brianpck
    Sep 22, 2019 at 16:50
  • I've now added approx. half of the text I would like to have translated. Probably it's too much for here, but it would be very helpful to have at least the first paragraph translated...
    – TomS
    Sep 22, 2019 at 20:31

1 Answer 1


I'm only an intermediate student of Latin, but I think I'll learn a lot by translating this. Here's what I came up with.

In the time since Pope Clement XIII permitted several Churches to celebrate the Feast in honor of the Most Holy Heart of Jesus together with its Office and Mass, the faithful peoples everywhere have felt themselves awakened by such ardor to renew their contemplation of the measureless love of this Divine Heart that now hardly a Diocese exists which doesn't wish it had obtained from the Apostolic See the privilege of performing the same feast.

(Literally, the last part is "hardly a Diocese exists which is glad not to have obtained…")

The bishops of the French Religious of Mary Immaculate attending to this, in order that a feast so agreeable to the souls of the faithful and observed in such like-minded piety in almost all the Catholic World should be celebrated straightforwardly hereafter by the whole Church, have arranged that their most humble wishes on this matter be submitted to our Most Holy Lord Pope Pius IX through the undersigned Cardinal, since he recently performed the duties of the Pope's chief legate among the French. Indeed the bishops, eagerly taking the opportunity to present public and solemn testimony of their veneration toward the Apostolic See in the person of the Cardinal Legate, met him lingering in Paris a great many times, and having avowed their deep and fullest adherence to the Roman Pontiff as the center of Catholic unity and Jesus Christ's Vicar on Earth, requested by insistent prayers that the Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus be deemed worthy to extend to the whole Church.

I'm confident that I have the gist of the meaning correct, but there are several places where I'm pretty sure I got some details wrong (especially humillima ea de re vota sua, ingenti numero, and enixis precibus). Hopefully someone more experienced will check my work and post corrections. P.S. Thanks to @Rafael for many corrections!

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    +1. My Ecclesiastical context contributions: fideles populi>faithful peoples (i.e., believers). Apostolic Seat>Apostolic See (the Vatican). Erga Sedem venerationis>of the veneration towards the See (the object of veneration is the Apostolic See). In persona Cardinalis Legati>In the peson of the Cardinal Legate. Pontifici veluti unitatis Centro et Christi Vicario>to the Pontiff as the center of unity and Vicar of Christ. That's what I can see right now
    – Rafael
    Sep 23, 2019 at 12:17
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    Thanks, @Rafael! Exactly the kind of knowledge I was hoping for. I'll put those in. Any correction for _ humillima ea de re vota sua?_
    – Ben Kovitz
    Sep 24, 2019 at 2:12
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    @TomS Sure, I'll give it a try. You don't need to type it in. I looked at the next paragraph here and it looks harder: more Catholic terminology and an even more complex sentence. It might take me a couple days to get to it. (It'll be a carrot while I'm working on something else.)
    – Ben Kovitz
    Sep 24, 2019 at 2:26
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    For humillima, etc.: "They have seen to it [curarunt] that their most humble wishes [humillima vota sua] on this matter [ea de re] be submitted to the Pope, etc." A votum often simply means "wish."
    – brianpck
    Sep 24, 2019 at 3:07
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    @brianpck Thanks. "Wishes" makes much more sense. I just added it.
    – Ben Kovitz
    Sep 24, 2019 at 3:54

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