Questions tagged [idiom]

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8
votes
1answer
162 views

Is it idiomatic to say “Intellego” to assure the speaker you're understanding?

In other words, when an English speaking person would say "I see" meaning "I understand what you're saying", is it natural in classical Latin to say Intellego, as in, maybe even more than once? If not,...
3
votes
3answers
176 views

Phrasing “based on” in Latin

I have failed to find a way to say "based on" in Latin. For a concrete example, I want to be able to write: The movie is based on the book. How would you go about phrasing this in Latin? Going by ...
3
votes
1answer
112 views

How to say “shake hands” (or handshake) in Latin?

In Galatians 2:9 there is a reference to a handshake between Paul and other Apostles: So, James, Cephas and John, these leaders, these pillars, shook hands with Barnabas and me as a sign of ...
2
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4answers
311 views

How do you say “three times a week” in Latin?

How do you say "three times a week" in Latin? For context, I want to say that I swim three times a week.
6
votes
1answer
139 views

<quality> even for being a <noun>

Salvēte omnēs, hocc erit mihi prīmum rogātum hāc in sēde. Haud dūdum vīdī quendam hominem scīscitārī, quōmodo posset Latīnē dīcī "he has a long tail, even for a cat". Ad quod rogātum cum respondēre ...
14
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3answers
1k views

Proper parsing of “Ite, missa est”

In the Catholic liturgy at the dismissal, the Latin phrase used is "Ite, missa est." The usual translation for this is "Go, the Mass has ended." Can someone suggest a proper parsing of this somewhat ...
6
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3answers
2k views

Is there a Latin expression to say the “exact opposite of something/someone”?

Consider the following English sentence: Clark Kent is the alter ego of Superman The latter uses a Latin expression, alter ego, meaning the "other self". Now, consider this sentence: ...
5
votes
2answers
78 views

How to construct the title of a house: House of the Large Cups?

I have read the thread on Domus optima, but I am looking for the idiom: how did Romans title their houses (vs. describe them)? In English, I would title our place "House of the Large Cups" because ...
10
votes
1answer
181 views

“How about” in Latin

How do you propose an idea for someone else to accept, reject, or counteroffer, as in this conversation? A. Where would you like to have dinner tonight? B. How about Rex Aztecorum on Fourth ...
5
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4answers
142 views

“Over promise under perform” motto

As this is the time when we're all coming up with wacky mottos, I thought I'd try my hand at our department's private motto. Having run a few variants through Google Translate, and coming out with a ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Translations of “ad nutum”

According to this post "ad nutum" can be used to mean "instantly." However, in this translation of a text of Thomas Aquinas, the translator uses the word "blindly" to translate "ad nutum." Aquinas's ...
4
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2answers
232 views

How to say “me importa un comino” (or equivalent) in Latin?

In Spanish there is a whole array of phrases of the type: Me importa un comino. where the word "comino" can be replaced by many alternatives (e.g. pito, pepino, bledo, etc). This phrase, in a more ...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

Meaning of “supra se servitium”

Background In the TV series Fallet, some of the upper class of the fictional town of Norbacka use the phrase supra se servitium as a sort of salutation. Its meaning is never elaborated upon. My ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

An error message in Latin for my programming language

I am writing a piece of software that translates programs into programs (a "compiler", in informatics lingo) and my source language allows the programmer to specify Latin numerals. In case the ...
6
votes
3answers
649 views

How to phrase “I like the way you think” in Latin?

Is there a concise way to phrase "I like the way you think" in Latin? I can find ways to say this, but everything I could think of is a little unwieldy compared to the English. For example, I might ...
5
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2answers
220 views

Antonym for “de profundis”?

I'm looking to find out what the Latin for "from the heights" is, as the equivalent of Oscar Wilde's title "De Profundis".
15
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5answers
4k views

What is a Latin version of Inshallah?

Anyone who served in the military in Iraq (and probably anyone who has done business in the Gulf) in the last 15 years is familiar with the term 'Inshallah.' I suppose it means 'God willing,' as in, "...
5
votes
2answers
784 views

Understanding “jam nunc”

The expression (idiom?) jam nunc appears several times in the Vulgata. So far I've seen two common translations. One is that of "now presently". For instance, Exodus 9:19: (Latin) Mitte ergo jam ...
4
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2answers
57 views

in order of temporal proximity

In Latin, how would you refer to the concept of sorting events according to temporal proximity (i.e. most recent, or nearest to now, first); as opposed to sorting by priority, or starting from the ...
15
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3answers
909 views

Is “esse est percipi” grammatical, even with infinitives?

According to the Crash Course Philosophy video today, George Berkeley summarized his empirical philosophy with the phrase "esse est percipi", to be is to be perceived. However, it feels somewhat ...
12
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2answers
2k views

What do animals say in classical Latin?

It is well known that the way animals "speak" is amusingly different in different languages. (See lion below.) This makes it hard to guess what kinds of words the Romans would have put in the mouths ...
14
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4answers
3k views

What would be a “night owl” in Latin?

On the recommendation of an esteemed Finnish member of our forum, I decided to ask how one would translate "night owl" into Latin. night owl (noun) a person who keeps late hours at night I ...
10
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2answers
826 views

Blowing one's own horn

Is there a Latin idiom for praising oneself in classical Latin? In English one can blow one's own horn (there are variants of this saying), but I doubt tuba sua ludere is likely mean the right thing. ...
5
votes
1answer
71 views

How do I negate an ut clause of result?

Ut clauses of result are excellent for saying "so ___ that". But what if I wanted to reverse this and say "not ___ enough to"? For example, tam strenue laborābam ut epistolās centum scripserim means "...
8
votes
1answer
81 views

“Ad populum” idiom

Is "ad populum" ever seen as an idiom for "popular", or can it only mean "to the people"? For example, if something is considered popular, would "ad populum" be an acceptable phrase to use?
8
votes
1answer
307 views

How does “recte admones” mean “you do well to remind me”?

When reading this question's accepted answer about phrases for forgetting, I saw the phrase recte admones translated as "you do well to remind me". But, doesn't that mean "you remind directly"? I don'...
3
votes
2answers
204 views

Why is plural of “mons pubis” not “montes pubum”

Latin newbie here. Was talking with a friend about Martian landforms like Olympus Mons. Then we talked about other uses of mons, like mons pubis. But then I realized I didn’t understand something. ...
9
votes
3answers
172 views

Did the Romans 'tip' for good service?

I need to refer in Latin to the modern practice of 'tipping' in return for good service. I am well aware of words and phrases for 'reward', which are essentially correct for my purpose, but I should ...
6
votes
2answers
328 views

A classical Latin phrase for “all or nothing”

Is there a saying in classical Latin similar to "all or nothing"? I am aware of aut Caesar aut nihil, and that would be fine if it was classical. In most cases the era of origin is irrelevant, but I ...
5
votes
1answer
90 views

Idiomatic phrasing of “to the [cardinal direction] of [something]”

I am currently writing a small geography of the Roman Empire at its greatest extent (in the year 117 AD, under Emperor Trajan) in an effort to practice my composition skills. So far everything has ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Translation of a phrase “Catch the moment, …” to Latin

I hope someone who speaks Russian could help me in translating a phrase "Лови момент. Цени мгновение." into Latin. I'm afraid the original meaning could be lost or transformed if I translate it to ...
7
votes
2answers
876 views

What's the most idiomatic way to say, “thanks, you too”?

We were discussing this question in the chat room, and came up with the possibility, gratias similiter, but we are not sure whether it's idiomatic. The context is this. Let's say a co-worker says to ...
4
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2answers
704 views

How do I say “everything started here”?

I would like like to translate "everything started here" in Latin. Would omni coepia hinc work?
4
votes
1answer
67 views

Latin phrases adopting an imprecise/incorrect meaning in English (or other languages)

Before staring learning Latin, I was already acquainted with many Latin expressions accommodated to Spanish (and English). Typical examples are ex ante, ex post, vice versa, et cetera, etc. Now that ...
6
votes
1answer
283 views

Latin phrase that means, dissolve and reintegrate

A couple of months ago, I heard this story of a demon or some entity that was cursed to eternally break something down and reintegrate it together. There is even a photo of the demon crying in the ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

“There is” in Latin

In English you use the phrasal verb there+[to be] to mean something different than just an object being placed somewhere visible or known to the speaker and/or listener (i.e., there). According to ...
3
votes
2answers
227 views

How would you say “see me” in latin?

In the context of being a person that is ignored by others, how would you say "see me" in Latin?
6
votes
1answer
47 views

Adding translation of “potential” to “ad infinitum”

The phrase "ad infinitum" is often used in texts that are otherwise non-Latin. I would like to use a variation of this phrase in an English text. In philosophy of mathematics there is a distinction, ...
6
votes
1answer
184 views

Quōmodo verba “in my opinion” Latīnē loquī?

In colloquial English (particularly in online discourse) the phrase "in my opinion" (often abbreviated as "imo/IMO") is quite common. I am wondering how one might express this in an idiomatic manner ...
5
votes
2answers
106 views

How would I say “as long as”?

Suppose I want to write about Meleager, fated to live exactly as long as a certain branch of wood lasts (no longer, no shorter). Or perhaps I'm writing about Cincinnatus, who agreed to hold power as ...
8
votes
2answers
61 views

What is a good deed?

Suppose I wanted to talk about good deeds. Generally this means acts done by someone for selfless reasons, solely to benefit others. For a literal translation I could go with bona facta, but the ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the phrase “Above all the hunt” translated into Latin?

I'm designing a sigil for my special forces team in a sci-fi book I'm writing, and without making this a 10,000 word post with backstory, the phrase on the sigil is "Above all, the hunt". Google and ...
6
votes
1answer
68 views

How might I write a latin phrase for swapping bodies?

Putting together a small literary piece where an item is inscribed with a Latin phrase that hints that it can be used to swap bodies (or minds, depending, I suppose, on your perspective) with another ...
3
votes
4answers
292 views

Translating “child of freedom”

How would I translate the phrase “child of freedom" in feminine form?
14
votes
1answer
452 views

Omnia vincit amor: vincere or vincire?

The phrase omnia vincit amor (from Vergilius' tenth Ecloga; see full text in Latin and English) is typically translated as "love conquers everything". However, vincit can come from either vincere (to ...
18
votes
2answers
8k views

How do you write dates in Latin?

I have read a little about the history of the Julian and Gregorian calendars. Julius Caesar introduced the twelve-month Julian calendar in 46 BC, and Pope Gregory XIII introduced the Gregorian ...
5
votes
1answer
93 views

How to phrase “it took two hours”?

In English or Finnish I can express the time it took to complete something in two ways, but in Latin only one: E: "I did it in two hours." F: "Tein sen kahdessa tunnissa." L: Duabus horis id perfeci. ...
7
votes
2answers
940 views

How did “status quo” get its meaning?

A literal translation of status quo would be, "the state in which". I think this touches on the present-day meaning of the phrase, but I think most would agree that it does not fully capture it. I am ...
4
votes
1answer
185 views

“What are you up to?”

I would like a Latin phrase to ask what the other person is doing at the moment. For example, it would not be unusual for me in chat to first say "hi" and then ask what the other person is doing. I ...