From Wikipedia

The Latin adverb sic ("thus"; in full: sic erat scriptum, "thus was it written") inserted after a quoted word or passage, indicates that the quoted matter has been transcribed exactly as found in the source text, complete with any erroneous or archaic spelling, surprising assertion, faulty reasoning, or other matter that might otherwise be taken as an error of transcription.

Is there variant for audio transcriptions? Or do you still use [sic] to point out that this is exactly what he/she said?

  • Are you asking how sic is used in English? Here is an answer on English Language Learners. It doesn't directly address quoting speech rather than writing, but yes, you would use sic for both. That answer does suggest, though, that you correct minor speech errors when quoting, rather than transcribe them precisely with a [sic]. – Ben Kovitz Jun 11 '16 at 16:40

The word sic means "thus" and is not tied to written contexts. If you want to say "thus it was said", a simple and analogous option is to say sic erat dictum. The underlying verbs are scribere (to write) and dicere (to say). If you only use the short form sic as is typical, it is valid for both contexts.

Side note: In fact, sic erat scriptum is pluperfect, so it is closer to "thus it had been written" than "thus it was written". In some cases the perfect sic est scriptum would make more sense, but this is mostly tangential to your question. However, it is another good reason to stick with the plain sic, especially when using the Latin adverb as a comment to text written or spoken in another language.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.