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I had a professor in university who told us that there is a latin expression that sounds something "Exa gratium" - meaning "chosen from a (horse) stable", referring to something (e.g. a horse) being chosen arbitrarily from some set of objects.

Does anyone know of such an expression?

Thanks!

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I don't know of any expression that sounds like that, but I did come across a Medieval Latin word catabulum (from the Greek κατάβολος), which apparently does mean "sty/animal enclosure." (You'll also see the word spelled captabulum.)

From there, you could potentially get:

ex catabulo, from the sty

If you squint, it kind of sounds like exa gratio (same number of syllables, at least; declined properly—the preposition ex takes an ablative, so it would end in -o).

Via Google I found it in a Medieval martyr text—vidua suscepit a catabolo B. Virum Marcellum—but it doesn't seem to mean quite what your professor said it should, so this might just be coincidental.

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