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21 votes

How do you say "please" in Classical Latin?

In Latin you need a verb to say "please". The verb quaesere mentioned by ktm5124 is a good one, but not the only one. That verb is used typically only in first person singular or plural present ...
Joonas Ilmavirta's user avatar
17 votes

How do you say "please" in Classical Latin?

To add to the other excellent answers, I would like to add a colloquial way of saying "please" that is very common in Plautus: sis (= si vis), which means "if you want" or "if ...
brianpck's user avatar
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13 votes

How do you say "please" in Classical Latin?

The verb quaeso was used to mean "please" in classical Latin. I did some research, and I think it can easily be added to the end of a sentence. Examples: Silentium, quaeso. (Silence, please.) ...
ktm5124's user avatar
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12 votes
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How to say "please pray for me" in ecclesiastical latin?

In Latin there is no equivalent for please, you use some form of I ask, instead. Aparently, having a specific word for please dates back just to the Renaissance, and in many languages it comes from ...
Rafael's user avatar
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12 votes

How do you say "please" in Classical Latin?

As a supplement to all the excellent answers above, I'll just point you to Eleanor Dickey's wonderful articles "How to Say 'Please' in Classical Latin" and "How to Say 'Please' in Post-Classical Latin....
Joel Derfner's user avatar
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10 votes
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How to say "you are welcome"?

This is not a phrase which demands a response, at least not from the available evidence. Most instances of gratias ago do not have the thanked person respond at all, and I could only really find one ...
cmw's user avatar
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10 votes
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Saying "thank you"

I have found some alternatives to gratias tibi ago in the literature. I limited my search for simple, conversational thank yous. These fall into two broad groups: Thanks expressed using “...
Penelope's user avatar
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9 votes

How do I address an email in Latin to my Latin professor?

Roman letters often included the name of both sender and recipient in the greeting. Take, for example, Cicero's letters to Atticus. Epistula 1.1 Scr. Romae m. Quint. a. 689 (65). CICERO ATTICO ...
ktm5124's user avatar
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8 votes

How to say "please pray for me" in ecclesiastical latin?

The simple imperative in Latin is significantly more polite than it is in English. It's even used when making requests to God in Ecclesiastical Latin: pie Iēsū domine, dōnā eīs requiem sempiternam "...
Draconis's user avatar
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7 votes
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What's the most idiomatic way to say, "thanks, you too"?

This interaction to my ears is decidedly modern, and since most of Roman literature is not colloquial dialogue, it will be hard to find exact matches. However, the request is very simple and ...
cmw's user avatar
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7 votes

How do you say "please" in Classical Latin?

I think the real answer to your question is that the Romans did not say “please”. The habit of attaching “please” more or less automatically to all imperatives is a phenomenon of modern European ...
fdb's user avatar
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5 votes
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How would one say "Pardon me," in the sense of not understanding or hearing, in Classical Latin?

The closest to this idiomatic phrase I could find was: quaeso, quid narras? sorry, what are you saying? Terence, Phormio, act 5, scene 8 Which, in this particular dialogue, is not quite “sorry, ...
Penelope's user avatar
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5 votes
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Requests with 'posse'

"Questions" that are actually requests using the archaic "potin?" are numerous in Plautus, and they appear in Terence as well. I think based on the evidence that a Roman would readily understand this ...
Magister Conradus's user avatar
5 votes

How do I address an email in Latin to my Latin professor?

In addition to ktm5124's excellent answer, the first line after the salutation could read SVBEEV. This stands for Sī valēs, bene est; ego valeō, which is essentially Latin for "How are you? I am ...
Joel Derfner's user avatar
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5 votes

How do I address an email in Latin to my Latin professor?

In his letters to Emperor Trajan, Pliny the Younger used the salutation Gaius Plinius Traiano Imperatori putting the sender (himself) in the nominative, and the recipient (Traianus) in the dative. ...
jpyams's user avatar
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4 votes

How to say "in all fairness" or "to be fair" in latin?

What is fair is aequum, so you would say "ut aequum". For example, in the Satires, Horace writes: ... amicus dulcis, ut aequum est, mea compenset vitiis bona ... ...My sweet friend, to be ...
Tyler Durden's user avatar
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4 votes

How would one say "Pardon me," in the sense of not understanding or hearing, in Classical Latin?

There are quite a few options, of varying degrees of politeness. A few are: Peto (te) quod dicis iterare is a bit wordy; peto ut hoc iterares is neater. Veniam abs te peto, sed sermonem non cepi ...
Tom Cotton's user avatar
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4 votes

Saying "thank you"

Primarily when giving thanks to the gods, constructions with grates were also used. For example: vobis (dis) grates ago atque habeo. See more examples by following the link to L&S. Of course ...
piscator's user avatar
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4 votes

How do I address an email in Latin to my Latin professor?

So, I will compile two pieces of my personal experience here to provide an answer. First off, whenever write emails to my teachers, I generally do so in the following manner: Hello, Mr./Mrs./Ms. X! ...
Sam K's user avatar
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3 votes

How to say "you are welcome"?

In @cmw's answer we see an exchange of the following kind: A thanks B for a compliment or a display of esteem/affection B replies with Meritum est tuum, maybe embellished with a preceding interjecton ...
Vincenzo Oliva's user avatar
2 votes

How do you say "please" in Classical Latin?

All excellent answers. I would think that an often-used polite formula like “please” would be brief, although I wouldn’t doubt that Cicero would have constructed whole nuanced sentences to express ...
Carlos de Zayas's user avatar
2 votes

How to say "you are welcome"?

SAW THIS ON QUORA: John Kerpan, Master of Latin and the Classical Humanities Answered 3 years ago · Author has 1.4K answers and 1.7M answer views If you want to reply to “Thank you” like a Roman, use “...
Michael Suhy's user avatar
1 vote

Number of adjectives in polite plural address

I offer this as a partial answer to Joonas’s question. In French, or at least in the written form of the language, you write “vous êtes content” for “you (polite singular) are content”, but “vous êtes ...
fdb's user avatar
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1 vote

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

I started to you et tu when someone said something nice, then I remember it consider a negative connotation over its use in Et tu, Brutus. Don't forget someone died.
Susan L Walkup's user avatar
1 vote

How do you say "please" in Classical Latin?

What about "sodes", a contraction of "si audes" giving the somewhat misleading "if you dare"; but Pock. Ox. Lat. Dict. (2001) gives "if you do not mind, please". Wiki gives "audes" as the gentler "if ...
tony's user avatar
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