Is the juice worth the squeeze?

By Anonymous, in 'English to Latin Translation', Dec 9, 2008.

  1. Anonymous Guest


    I wouldn't even qualify myself as a novice at latin so I was hoping that someone with indepth knowledge of the language would be able to help me out.

    I'm looking for a gramatically correct translation for:

    'Is the juice worth the squeeze?'

    I'd appreciate your help :)

  2. Iynx Consularis

    • Consularis
    Re: Help with translation

    A fairly literal rendering:

    Estne succus exprimendo dignus?

    But I dunno. Any other ideas?
  3. Bitmap Civis Illustris

    • Civis Illustris
    Cygnea, Gena
    Re: Help with translation

    Excellent suggestion. I usually find "sucus" spelled with one "c" though.
  4. Mike Schmidt New Member

    Hello, and thank you in advance if anyone can help me out. This is my first post, but I've read all of the permanent posts and I'm trying to follow all of the rules.

    I know there is a previous post about this phrase here: But I was hoping to learn a little more, and to come up with a translation that is a little more similar to one that means a great deal to me. What follows might be a slightly longer story than you need, but I'd like to be specific.

    My late grandfather loved the phrase "Is the juice worth the squeeze?" and used it often. He had suggested long before I was born that it should be our family motto. Sometime in the late 1960's or early 70's, he paid someone to have it translated into Latin. The result hung proudly in his office and after his retirement upon the wall of his bedroom. After his passing, I received the framed quote and proudly hung it in my classroom. Each year, I would tell the story of my grandpa and how much the quote means to me. This year, a student told me that the translation was incorrect. The current (mis)translation says; "Valentne Sricum Exprimera"

    I am a math and physics teacher, and my foreign language skills have long atrophied. However, I saw this as a challenge and tried my best to figure out what the quote actually said and how I could make it better. I've been working for a few days. I even asked the student that had called me out, and the solution he gave is exactly what was supplied in the previous post: “Estne succus exprimendo dignus?” I didn’t believe he came up with it on his own. Typing that in his suggestion is how I came across your website. The fact that he might supply another's work as his own is not horribly surprising from a high school student.

    As to my analysis of grandpa’s original, please correct me if I'm in error, because I would genuinely like to learn:

    "Valentne" is the third person present conjugation of valēre: valent (plus the -ne suffix to create an interrogative.) I have found valēre defined in some dictionaries as “to be worthy” as well as “to be strong/powerful.” I’m not sure how common a definition this is, but it makes sense to me.

    “Sricum” seems to be a complete mistranslation. The only definition I found for this word was “an ear of corn.” Both the previous thread and nearly every dictionary I could find indicate that sucus is the correct translation for juice. I’m not positive on the exact form I would need, but I would guess the singular nominative would be acceptable?

    “Exprimera” really confuses me. I’m not sure of the conjugation of exprímere that the original translator was shooting for. I believe this is the appropriate verb for “to squeeze/express,” but I’m doubtful about the conjugation.

    Though I am dubious about grandpa’s specific translation, I would like to find something similar that is in the succinct and “motto-like” form, rather than a direct word for word translation. With your help, I’m hoping to come up with a grammatically correct translation of the idea of the phrase while keeping as close to grandpa’s old favorite as possible.

    My own amateurish attempts were to utilize a gerund, literally translated into something like “is the juice worth the squeezing”. I am not sure if this is acceptable, or if the gerund expriméndumis appropriate in this context. So my very basic (and admittedly incorrect) starting point is something like “Valentne sucus expriméndum.”

    As much as I have enjoyed the research and learning new things, I also know well enough to rely on the knowledge and experience of experts. I would truly appreciate any help you could give me.

    Thank you.
  5. Iohannes Aurum Technicus Auxiliarius

    • Technicus Auxiliarius
    Threads merged
  6. Pacifica grammaticissima

    • Civis Illustris
    Estne succus exprimendo dignus? is slightly incorrect. Estne sucus expressu dignus would be correct for "Is the juice worth squeezing out", but that may not have the exact same nuance as "Is the juice worth the squeezing". Tell me if you think it's close enough for your purposes.

    Valentne sucus expriméndum is irredeemably incorrect.
  7. Matthaeus Vemortuicida strenuus

    • Civis Illustris
    Why the apex?
  8. Mike Schmidt New Member

    Thank you! I certainly feel that "Is the juice worth squeezing out" captures the meaning of the phrase.

    My desire to try to retain some of the original translation was based entirely on sentimentality. I had come to the conclusion very early in my own research that the original translation was very poorly made. If an expert says it is irredeemable, I have complete trust in that assessment!

    I'm not sure if I'll get another framed quote with the correct translation, or keep the old one (maybe modify it) to retain the story of the original while supplementing it with a correct translation. I'm imaging grandpa's reaction if I had been able to share this adventure of learning with him while he was still around. Thoughts and memories like that make me smile.

    I truly appreciate your time and assistance. Thanks again.
  9. syntaxianus Civis Illustris

    • Civis Illustris
    Massachusetts, USA
    Consider this:

    tanti-ne sucus est quanti labor exprimendi?

    = Is the juice worth as much as the effort of squeezing it out?

    For labor exprimendi, you could also just have expressio (the squeezing out):

    tanti-ne sucus est quanti expressio?

    L&S gives this example from Plautus:
    tanti est, quanti est fungus putidus = It is worth as much as a rotten mushroom.

    I suppose you might also say:

    meretne sucus expressionem?

    = Does the juice deserve / merit / prove worth the squeezing out?
    Last edited by syntaxianus, May 20, 2018

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