Saturday, July 31, 2010


The notes here are taken from the actual Scala, so be warned that references to the "previous" proverb refer to its order in the Scala, not its order here. You can read more about the word at the Verbosum blog: NIMIUS.

Quod nimium est, fugito. ~ Note: Here is a fuller version of the saying: Quod nimium est, fugito; medio gaudere memento.

Omne nimium non bonum. ~ Note: Here nimium is being used substantively, meaning "something excessive, something in excess."

Ne nimium. ~ Note: Here you see "ne" used without a verb - because the idea is that you should not do anything to excess: don't talk too much, don't say too late, don't eat too much, don't eat too little - ne (WHATEVER) nimium!

Nulli nimium credite. ~ Note: Note the sneaky dative form of nullus: nulli, with the verb credite, which takes a dative complement. Nimium, as in the previous proverb, is adverbial: trust no one overmuch.

Nihil nimium cupio.

Nil nimium cupito. ~ Note: Note the future imperative form here: cupito. Future imperatives are quite common in proverbial expressions, even if they are not often found in standard Latin prose or poetry.

Nemini nimium bene est. ~ Note: This saying shows up in a fragment of the archaic Latin comic poet, Afranius. The word play between "nemini" and "nimium" definitely fits the comic style!

Qui nimium petit, nihil accipit. ~ Note: Here the contrast is between nimium (too much) and nihil (nothing at all).

Multi nimium habent, nemo satis.

Ne quid nimium. ~ Note: Note that quid here has the force of aliquid (it is very common to find that the ali- disappears after the words si, nisi, num and ne). There is no verb here because this saying forbids anything being taken to excess!

Qui nimium petit, totum perdit.

Nil nimium. ~ Note: Here you see a contracted form of nihil: nil. Latin not only could drop the "h" breathing at the beginning of a word (for example, you can find the words "harena" and "arena"), it was also possible for an "h" to get gobbled up inside a word, as here.

Nil nimium cupias. ~ Note: Note here the subjunctive, cupias, which has the force of a command: you should desire nothing overmuch.

Qui nimium probat, nihil probat. ~ Note: This is a type of logical fallacy: people who make sweeping conclusions can end up undermining what they originally set out to demonstrate. So, here is some advice to those of your writing the obligatory five paragraph essays for school: Don't feel obliged to show in the final paragraph that you have made an argument on a cosmic scale; just stick to what you originally set out to show. Qui nimium probat, nihil probat!

Non nimium curo. ~ Note: You can find this sentiment expressed in Martial's Epigrams, 9.81. Note that nimium is being used here adverbially (as often happens with neuter forms in Latin: just as multum is often used adverbially, so too with nimium).

Omne nimium vertitur in vitium.

Omne quod est nimium, vertitur in vitium. ~ Note: This is one of the sayings collected by Wegeler, 802.

Omne nimium nocet. ~ Note: Here the adjective nimius is being used substantively to mean "something excessive" or "extravagance."

Omnia nimia nocent. ~ Note: This is a plural version of the preceding proverb.

Omne nimium est naturae inimicum. ~ Note: The adjective nimius is being used substantively here to mean "(something) excessive" or the idea of "excess" itself: Every excess is an enemy to nature.

Satis est superare inimicum, nimium est perdere.

Fugiendae sunt nimiae amicitiae. ~ Note: Here you have the gerundive used to express a command, with amicitiae as the subject, hence the form fugiendae: feminine plural.

Nimium breves flores rosae. ~ Note: Here the adverb nimium modifies an adjective, nimium breves: too short, too short-lived.

Arcus nimium tensus frangitur.

Quod nimium est, laedit. ~ Note: Compare the earlier sayings you saw that warned against excess, e.g. "Omne nimium non bonum."

Nemo confidat nimium secundis. ~ Note: The words are from Seneca's Thyestes. Note that the word nimium here is functioning as an adverb (not uncommon for neuter singular adjectival forms).

Fortuna nimium quem fovet, stultum facit.

Ne nimium praeceps, neu mora longa nimis.

Magis offendit nimium quam parum. ~ Note: The words are from Cicero: etsi enim suus cuique modus est, tamen magis offendit nimium quam parum.

Vitium est ubique, quod nimium est. ~ Note: The words are from Quintilian, who is explaining that excess (nimium) is in every circumstance (ubique) a fault, something that an orator must avoid.

Qui nimium fatur, stultissimus esse probatur. ~ Note: This is one of the sayings collected by Wegeler, 1039.

Cur nimium appetimus? nemini nimium bene est.

Mel nimium saturo muri censetur amarum.

Facit avidos nimia felicitas. ~ Note: The words are from Seneca's treatise De Clementia.

Funem abrumpis nimium tendendo. ~ Note: This is one of the sayings Erasmus included in his Adagia, 1.5.67.

Arcum nimia frangit intentio.

Fallaci nimium ne crede lucernae.

Nimia simplicitas facile deprimitur dolis.

Festinatio nimia hominem retardat.

Nimium rebus ne fide secundis.

Nimium tendendo rumpitur funiculus.

Nimia gula morborum mater. ~ Note: Since gula is a feminine noun, this means it can be the mother, mater, of things - in this case, the mother of illnesses.

Fides nimia equum abegit.

Familiaritas nimia contemptum parit.

Parit contemptum nimia familiaritas.

Nec nimium taceas, nec verba superflua fundas. ~ Note: This is one of the sayings collected by Wegeler, 662: Nec nimium taceas, nec verba superflua fundas / sed medium teneas, quo bene semper eas.

Omne nocet nimium, mediocriter omne gerendum. ~ Note: This is one of the sayings collected by Wegeler, 803.

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