I found this (Latin?) inscription on a commemorative plaque in the mountains.

My questions:

  1. Is this correct Latin?
  2. If so, what does it mean?

After some research (on the internet, and consulting "Lateinische Elementar-Grammatik, Ferdinand Schöning 1973"), my translation (mainly inspired by the context) is: "Mountains not only let overcome fears and concerns but also serve as support (prop) for the chains". I'm not sure because some words and forms don't seem to make sense.

Thanks, --vk

enter image description here (source: http://atlantis23.com/w/montes_fecerunt.jpg)

Edit (context): The plaque is in the Glarus Alps (Switzerland), on the mountain named 'Chärpf' at about 8800 ft altitude. Coordinates 46°55'08.501''N 9°05'39.431''E. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kärpf) The people on the plaque are maybe members of the Swiss Alpine Club or the resident Wanderverein, volunteers who maintain the hiking routes. --vk

enter image description here (source: http://atlantis23.com/w/kaerpf1_map.jpg)

  • Where is this plaque? The environment, coupled with the mostly German names suggests the Alps. Does googling the names on the plaque yield anything useful? Walter Hallauer seems to be a reasonably unusual name; currently I am finding esti.admin.ch/en/the-esti/organization/organization
    – tripleee
    Sep 2, 2021 at 11:46

1 Answer 1


This is perfectly good Latin and I do not think a machine translation would have managed to produce this. It means:

[The people mentioned on the plaque] conquered the mountains, and indeed the(ir?) anxieties and fears of the summits, and generously had chain fixtures installed.

Note: fieri fecit is a traditional formula by which the sponsor of a work (of art) signs his name. It differs from the even more traditional fecit ("made this") and literally means "made it be made." Since they are talking about chains here, I translated this freely as "had installed."

Note 2: catenarum adminicula means "supports of chains." I translated this freely as "chain fixtures."

  • 1
    Could you explain the "nec non" bit? As far as I can tell, it means "nor not", which doesn't make much sense.
    – jwodder
    Sep 2, 2021 at 20:37
  • 3
    @jwodder it literally means "and not not," a complicated way of saying "and," I guess, but essentially it is a fixed expression. Lewis & Short translate it as: "emphatically affirmative, and also, and besides, and indeed, and" Sep 2, 2021 at 20:47
  • Aha, now it makes sense. 'Montes' is accusative, the subject of the sentence is implied. Thanks for the translation.
    – atlantis23
    Sep 3, 2021 at 9:54

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