Amor intellectualis necessitatis.

By adj1001, in 'Latin to English Translation', Sep 16, 2018.

  1. adj1001 New Member

    Hi everyone, and thanks in advance for any help you care to offer.

    What do you think would be the most accurate English translation of the above phrase? And is it from some well-known context--Spinoza or Pascal for example--that gives it wider connotations?

    Thanks again for any thoughts.
  2. R. Seltza Active Member

    Terra Solis Lapsi
    I believe that this would translate to "Intellectual Love of Necessity".

    I'm not really sure where this phrase is from though...
  3. adj1001 New Member

    Thank you so much.
  4. R. Seltza Active Member

    Terra Solis Lapsi
  5. Nikolaos schmikolaos

    • Censor
    Oscar Wilde seems to have written a poem called Amor Intellectualis, but that is the best I have for anything with the chance of being well-known.

    Moving to the less well-known in the English-speaking world, I found this similar phrase (amor intellectualis dei, Intellectual love of God) in a German article, but I can't read German.

    Then, there are a couple of results in French for a Google search of your phrase, here and here, but I can't read French either. In any case, it doesn't seem to be particularly famous.
  6. adj1001 New Member

    Ah ha! Yes! That's it! Thank you Nikolaos! You laid out the points that connect Seltza's translation with the context.

    The Wikipedia article you linked is about Spinoza. Apparently, the last section of his Ethics argues for the notion of amor Dei intellectualis, divine/intellectual love of God.

    The other two links you provided quote French author Léon Werth's WWII journal, Déposition.

    As it happens, Werth is where I encountered the phrase amor intellectualis necessitatis.

    In Werth's roman à clef of WWI, Clavel soldat, a French soldier (Werth himself) at the front is hating the fact that, with death always imminent and civilian ("real") life a world away, no one can get on with living, e.g., do "normal" things. He muses that, for example, he'd like to read Spinoza's Ethics "once and for all," out of "amor intellectualis necessitatis."

    It's Werth's play on Spinoza's notion, substituting necessity for God, and highlighting the incongruity of such an abstract desire in so exigent a situation. (Later we discover he in fact has a copy, and finds time to read it.)

    Again, thank you much, Seltza and Nikolaos.

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