Thursday, June 30, 2011

Scala 22 (1051-1100)

<== Go back to Scala 21 (1001-1050)

1051. Bis moritur qui mortem timet.

As often, the antecedent of the relative pronoun is implied by not expressed: Bis moritur (is), qui mortem timet.

1052. Bis vivit qui bene.

Note the implied parallelism: Bis vivit qui bene (vivit). The alliteration of bis-bene is also a nice touch!

1053. Ne bis in idem.

[idem: the same, identical] The verb here is left unspecified, so that it can suit the context: don't get mixed up in the same bad thing twice, no matter what that thing might have been! In legal Latin, this means that the same person is not to be charged twice on the same count, also known as "double jeopardy." For more, see this Wikipedia article.

1054. idem

This Latin word is often abbreviated: id. For examples of how this Latin word is used in English, see this Wikipedia article.

1055. Omnibus eadem non decent.

Here eadem is neuter plural, "the same (things)."

1056. Dicere et facere non semper eiusdem.

This construction with the genitive (eiusdem) and infinitive means something like "within the power of something to (do something)." So you might translate this saying into English as: "It is not always within the power of the same person to say and to do."

1057. Homines sunt eiusdem generis.

[genus: origin, race, sort, variety] A genitive phrase can be used in the predicate, as here, to describe something, much like the English idiom, "People are all of the same type," i.e. we belong to the same type, the same species.

1058. Omnia idem pulvis.

[pulvis: dust] Here idem is being just adjectivally, with pulvis: All things are the same dust. Compare the burial service from the book of Common Prayer: We therefore commit his body to the ground; earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust.

1059. Pulvis et umbra sumus.

You can find this in Horace's Odes, 4.7.

1060. Non sine pulvere palma.

[palma: palm, palm of victory] Here the dust is from the dust and sweat of the arena, and the palma is the palm of victory.

1061. Palma virtuti.

The verb is not stated but implied: The palm of victory (is to be awarded to, will be given to, goes to etc.) excellence, virtuti (dative).

1062. Palmam qui meruit, ferat.

[mereo: earn, deserve, merit] Note the subjunctive, ferat: Let the one who has earned the palm of victory carry it off. This is the motto of the Knights of Sparta, a carnival organization in New Orleans.

1063. Fraus meretur fraudem.

[fraus: trick, deceit, fraud] Although the deponent verb mereor takes only passive endings, it is still active in meaning and able to take a direct object as you see here: fraudem.

1064. Inventa lege, inventa est fraus legis.

This saying begins with an ablative absolute: inventa lege. The idea is that as soon as a law is decreed, people will find a way to get around it!

1065. Fraus est accipere, quod non possis reddere.

Note the subjunctive possis, which gives the clause a hypothetical quality: "that which you could not possibly pay back."

1066. Fraus omnia corrumpit.

[corrumpo: pervert, falsify, corrupt] This is a maxim in legal Latin, which declares that where fraud is involved, the entire process is tainted. You can also find the maxim in the form "Fraus omnia vitiat" and "Fraus omnia vitiat et corrumpit."

1067. Optima, corrupta, pessima.

[pessimus: worst] The idea here is that "The best things (optima), if they are corrupted (corrupta), become the worst things of all (pessima)." Compare Shakespeare's line, "For sweetest things turn sourest by their deeds" (Sonnet 94).

1068. Neque pessimus, neque primus.

This saying praises the "golden mean" of the middle ground: not worst, not first, but somewhere in-between.

1069. Lingua est optimum et pessimum.

[lingua: tongue, language, speech] Proverbs love paradox, and this is a good example: the tongue is both the best and the worst of things; the best because of the good things you can accomplish with words, and the worst because of the terrible things words can do. Note that optimum and pessimum are substantive adjectives being used as nouns: optimum, "a most excellent thing," and pessimum, "a most wicked thing." You can also find the saying in this form: Lingua res optima et pessima.

1070. Bovem in lingua fert.

[bos: ox, bull, cow] This refers not to an ox, but to a coin that bears the images of an ox: someone carrying an ox on their tongue is someone who has been bribed to keep silent! The ox was regularly found stamped on the coins of ancient Greece; here is an example: image.

1071. Bos sibi ipsi pulverem movet.

Notice that ipsi is the dative form of ipse, agreeing with sibi. When the ox stamps in anger, he is only stirring up dust for himself - like humans, animals can be their own worst enemies.

1072. Aliud homini, aliud bovi.

This is another one of those aliud...aliud sayings: One things for the man, another for the ox. The saying is adapted from Cicero's De Finibus, 5.

1073. Si non potes bovem, asinum agito.

The word agito is the future imperative of agere. Note that this proverb depends on an implied parallelism: Si non potes (agere) bove, asinum agito.

1074. Volentem bovem ducito.

The form ducito is another example of a future imperative, this time from the verb duco.

1075. Bos ad praesepe.

[praesepe: manger, crib, stall] This is a saying collected by Erasmus in his Adagia, 2.1.39.

1076. Canis in praesepe.

[canis: dog] This saying alludes to the famous Aesop's fable of the dog in the manger.

1077. Irritare canem noli dormire volentem.

The first infinitive, irritare, is the complement of noli (noli irritare, do not disturb) and the second infinitive, dormire, is the complement of volentem (volentem dormire, wanting to sleep).

1078. Qui me amat, amet et canem meum.

Notice the distinction between the indicative amat (he who loves me), and the subjunctive amet (let him love my dog too).

1079. Melior est canis vivens leone mortuo.

This is from the Biblical book of Ecclesiastes, 9.

1080. Canis mortuus non mordet.

Many European languages feature this saying about the dead dog; compare the Spanish saying about a dead chicken, "Gallina muerta no cacarea."

1081. Canis qui mordet, mordetur.

This belongs to the category of "what goes around, comes around" proverbs, such as the one you saw earlier: Sicut fecisti, fiet tibi.

1082. Inter canem et lupum.

Compare the English saying, "Between a rock and a hard place."

1083. Cave canem.

[caveo: beware, watch out, avoid] You can see this warning in a mosaic found in the ruins of Pompeii: image.

1084. Cave lupum.

This is the motto of the USS Seawolf submarine.

1085. Cave virum maiorem.

You can also find this same idea expressed about the man who is potentior, "more powerful" - Cavendum a potentiore.

1086. Cave ab eo quem non nosti.

Notice that you can be wary of something in the accusative (cave canem), but you can also be wary of something with the preposition ab, as you can see in this saying: cave ab eo...

1087. Cave ab homine unius libri.

Here is another example of the verb cavere used with the preposition ab.

1088. Cave amicum credas, nisi si quem probaveris.

You can also use a subjunctive with cavere, as here: cave amicum credas, "be wary of trusting a friend."

1089. Quid cautus caveas, aliena exempla docebunt.

Here caveas is in the subjunctive because it is an indirect question, introduced by quid: The examples provided by other people (aliena exempla) will teach you (docebunt) what you should carefully avoid (quid cautus caveas).

1090. Serum est cavendi tempus in mediis malis.

The word cavendi is a gerund in the genitive case, "time of taking care," "time for taking precautions," etc.

1091. Aliis cavet; non cavet ipse sibi.

This is the paradoxical situation of the busybody, who is keeping an eye on others, but not watching out for himself (sibi).

1092. Sperate, miseri; cavete, felices.

Oliver Goldsmith included this motto on the title page of his novel, The Vicar of Wakefield.

1093. Caveant consules!

[consul: consul] Here is an explanation of just what the consuls need to be careful of: Caveant consules ne quid detrimenti republica capiat.

1094. Cave ne cadas!

[cado: fall, drop, topple] Here you can see cave used with a "ne" clause: take care, so that you don't fall.

1095. Fortis cadere, cedere non potest.

This proverb depends on word play of cadere and cedere in Latin.

1096. Orta omnia cadunt.

[orior: rise, arise, emerge, begin] The past participle of orior means "that which has risen up," "something which has begun," etc.

1097. Sole oriente, fugiunt tenebrae.

The first part of the saying here is an ablative absolute: sole oriente, "when the sun rises."

1098. Cum sol oritur, omnibus oritur.

Compare the similar saying which you saw earlier: Sol omnibus lucet.

1099. Ex oriente lux.

Literally this refers to the rising of the sun in the east, but metaphorically it has come to refer to the arrival of Eastern wisdom in the West.

1100. Aetas alia ex alia oritur.

This is another one of those alia...alia proverbs: One age arises from another.

Scala 23 (1101-1150)

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