I was in a store today when I came across a notebook that said "Carpe That Diem" on the cover. How would one translate this phrase into Latin properly?

At first I thought to simply translate "that" with a Latin demonstrative pronoun, but then I realized that "that" in this context is being used idiomatically to express enthusiasm and positive encouragement, i.e. it is being used in the sense of "Yeah! You got this! Go seize that day!" not in the sense of "Seize that particular day over there."

Does Latin have any similar idioms to express an imperative given with enthusiasm and positive encouragement?


I am thinking of something similar to what a Roman general might say to his men urging them into battle except a little more tongue-in-cheek. Imagine a father encouraging his young child playing soldier saying something like "Go get that Carthaginian!" as the child stabs a bush.

1 Answer 1


Welcome to the site! I can only think of an emphatic demonstrative pronoun:

Carpe hunce diem!

The emphasis expressed by the long form of the pronoun could be interpreted as enthouasism, although other interpretation would be possible. In context, though, I think the emphatic pronoun, the exclamation mark, and the meaning of the saying together will probably have the desired effect? Just as in English there is a theoretical ambiguity, as you explained it, but I think that will probably disappear in context.

  • 1
    This is an interesting idea and according to Latin wiktionary, a valid usage: (en.wiktionary.org/wiki/-ne#Latin), but I feel like in this case, "huncine" emphasizes "that" as in "Should you not seize this day?" rather than capturing the meaning of the English phrase which seems closer to "Go get that day!" This is definitely somewhat subjective, though.
    – nellapizza
    Commented Feb 16, 2019 at 22:27
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    @nellapizza: Perhaps so. I'm not sure about the ultimate effect.
    – Cerberus
    Commented Feb 16, 2019 at 23:58

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