I am looking for the exact Latin equivalent of:

It runs in our blood.

In this sentence it refers to Literature. So far, we have come to this one:

Currit in sanguine nostro

Feel free to change the whole sentence if that will meet what I am looking for more closely. I want the translation to sound formal and official.

  • 3
    Your translation is technically correct, word for word, but doesn't make much sense. What's the thing that runs in your blood? That'll affect the Latin.
    – Draconis
    Commented Sep 4, 2018 at 17:59
  • @Draconis Thanks for the quick reply. I am looking for a formal sentence. It is literature. It refers to literature but i want the sentence to be exactly a meaningful translatiom of It runs in our blood.
    – Pooya Raki
    Commented Sep 4, 2018 at 18:12
  • @luchonacho Thanks for the reply. I have googled your sentence and according to google it means our blood flows. Do you mean the same? Or google may be wrong.
    – Pooya Raki
    Commented Sep 4, 2018 at 18:22
  • 4
    Unfortunately, "it runs in our blood" is an English idiom that doesn't translate perfectly into Latin. Off the top of my head I'd use a form of ingignō instead. (Also Google Translate is notoriously bad at Latin, don't trust it in general.)
    – Draconis
    Commented Sep 4, 2018 at 18:23
  • 1
    In this sense all the classical example I've traced speak of the blood in terms of the blood-line. They all refer to the parents, or the tribe gens. 'E Sanguine Gentis Nostrae Currit' would get round that problem.
    – Hugh
    Commented Sep 5, 2018 at 19:23

3 Answers 3


The phrase "runs in the blood" is an English idiom, and as such, it doesn't necessarily make sense when translated word-for-word into Latin. Instead, I would phrase it slightly differently.

in nōs ingenitus
instilled into us

Ingenitus is a difficult word to translate succinctly, but it refers to something that's a natural part of someone from birth, rather than something they've picked up later. In other words, something in the blood.

You could also keep the reference to "blood" directly:

in sanguinem nōstrum ingenitus
instilled into our blood(line)

Like in English, sanguis can mean literal blood (the stuff in your veins) or a direct line of descent, as in "blood relatives".

The repetition of in is somewhat poetic, and in my opinion makes it sound better, as well as adding emphasis.


In effect, you asking about one of the basic difficulties of translation between any two languages. It's important to recognise that either style or idiom, and sometimes both, have to be transformed. In order to accomplish this, a translation is often a compromise, and the answer by Draconis indicates this very well. I would, however, be bolder and look for something which equates to the sense behind what you need to translate.

Is it unavoidable to write of something running through our blood as such? To me, it seems that if you want to refer to something within your nature — if you like, something inborn, innate — you might avoid any reference to blood and the way it moves, and still achieve what you want.

Perhaps res in nos innata, 'a thing inborn to us' would be a suitable format. You could substitute a more particular noun for res to suit your context: litterae or humanitas, for example (remembering, of course, to maintain agreement between whatever you choose and its epithet).


For "it runs in our blood", to me, the following seems fine:

in sanguine nostro fluit

Fluit emphasises the liquid aspect of blood more than currit.

Another option is "it runs inside our blood", as in:

intra sanguinem nostrum fluit

Or "it runs through our blood":

per sanguinem nostrum fluit


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