What is the Latin expression for "day one", as expressed as the first day of the rest of your life?

  • Welcome to the site, Greg! Would a direct translation of "the first day" be sufficient for your purposes? If not, can you elaborate on what direction it should be taken into?
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    Commented Feb 20, 2018 at 17:55
  • "the first day" is sufficient. Can you kindly advise of the translation?
    – Greg H
    Commented Feb 20, 2018 at 21:44
  • Adrian Keister's answer gives precisely that, including an example sentence.
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    Commented Feb 20, 2018 at 22:06

2 Answers 2


How about diēs prīma? So, "This is the first day of the rest of your life" might go like this: "Haec diēs prīma est residuae vītae tuae."


One is inevitably reminded of the Vulgate of Genesis 1,5: factumque est vespere et mane, dies unus.

  • It might have been "day one" in the Hebrew original, but if this is so, this translation of Jerome's testifies to the fact that he failed to understand the original. What the Latin means is "in the evening and in the morning it was made one and the same day". Commented Jun 11, 2019 at 18:30
  • @Unbrutal_Russian. Read the whole chapter: day one ...day two....day three....
    – fdb
    Commented Jun 11, 2019 at 22:26
  • So are you in essence contending that in Jerome's idiolect, the ordinal series "prīmus, secundus, tertius" was instead "ūnus, secundus, tertius"? That is not incredible, but to prove that this isn't one of the plentiful translation artifacts (not to use the terms "translationese" or "gibberish") in that book, one would have to provide some evidence that this was the case for some other speakers too. I'd be very interested. Or do you mean he switches from cardinal to ordinal? This does seem to happen in modern Italian, but in that language "giorno uno" doesn't already mean "one day". Commented Jun 12, 2019 at 12:26
  • I have made this a bit too simple. Hebrew, Greek, and Latin all have “day one/one day”, but then “second day”, “third day” etc. The Vulgata is following the older versions literally. @Unbrutal_Russian
    – fdb
    Commented Jun 12, 2019 at 14:03
  • The most straight-forward translation for וַיְהִי־עֶרֶב וַיְהִי־בֹקֶר יֹום אֶחָד is “and there was an evening and there was a morning: day one” and it was understood thus by the KJV. But since Hebrew does not have any cases (the Semitic case system having been lost in Hebrew) one could theoretically interpret ʻereb and boqer as adverbials and translate “and it was in the evening and it was in the morning: one day”. This is how Jerome chose to understand it.
    – fdb
    Commented Jun 12, 2019 at 14:13

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