I am working on some jerseys for my polo team, and we want to have the words "polo is life" in Latin printed across the back. We don't trust Google translate. For reference, this is equine polo, not water polo. Thanks so much!

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    Welcome to Latin.SE! Please, have a look to How do I ask a good question?.
    – Charo
    Commented Oct 8, 2023 at 19:58
  • Polo was popular in the middle ages, so there must have been a Latin word for it. In Greek it was τζυκάνιον, so tzycanio? Trapman has alsulegia equestris. Alsulegia is all over the internet, meaning "hockey" apparently.
    – Figulus
    Commented Oct 9, 2023 at 22:18
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    @Figulus By the way, polo is called "horse-ball" in Chinese, so I would make a calque pila equestris for it if there is no better extant word Commented Oct 18, 2023 at 14:25

1 Answer 1


The literal translation is

Pila equestris est vita

but have been commented to me that "Polo is life" is somehow not supposed to mean the delusional claim that polo is required to have some kind of life, not have some connotations in this way, therefore here is another translation that follows the lines of the comments

Pila equestris est mea vitae

If follows the claims of "Polo is a big part of who I am", still is lightly delusional like the original title, but not gets to the part of trying to say that if you are unable to practice polo you will die or be a soulless husk, at least for others. Still I don't think that those that are (at least those that say it first) would be enough self aware to not trying to don't trying to put in all people.

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    You can't translate idioms word-for-word and hope to preserve the meaning. If you still want to do it that can be a reasonable choice, but it has to be deliberate and explicit.
    – Cairnarvon
    Commented Oct 28, 2023 at 17:54
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    "[x] is life" is an idiomatic expression in English. It is not an idiomatic expression in Latin.
    – Cairnarvon
    Commented Oct 29, 2023 at 1:50
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    That isn''t what the English means at all.
    – cmw
    Commented Oct 29, 2023 at 18:34
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    It's a phrase used to indicate devotion to something, but in a lighthearted manner. "Polo is life" means "Polo is a big part of who I am." The connotations are personal: no one is saying that that person needs polo to live, or that everyone must have polo to live. There's no delusion at all.
    – cmw
    Commented Oct 29, 2023 at 22:09
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    While that may be, English isn't the same as Spanish. Languages are not, and cannot, be purely literal. Even the word "literal" is figurative.
    – cmw
    Commented Oct 29, 2023 at 22:49

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