Duty is the essence of manhood

ursuben

New Member
First, many apologies if this is the wrong place or silly thing to request. I am looking to have an engraving done for my son who is signing up to serve in the military. I don't have any experience with Latin, but I am looking to see if the following is a loose enough translation. If not, perhaps you could suggest another?

"Duty is the essence of manhood" - George S. Patton

"Officium sit essentia virtis"

How loose is this translation to the original quote above?

Many thanks and many apologies!
 

R. Seltza

Well-Known Member
By any chance, did you mean virtutis? Virtis seems to be a misspelling.

Aside from that, the word sit is subjunctive, so it could've worked if you wanted a jussive command (ex: "May duty be the essence of manhood"). If you want something closer to the original quote, you'd use est instead (as in officium est essentia virtutis).

Others may have more input.
 

ursuben

New Member
R. -

Much appreciated! I am guessing that was a misspelling. Thank you for your help. If I haven't overstepped my stay, would you mind translating this quote? I'll owe you a scotch. "To thine own self be true" (another gift soon for my youngest son).

Grateful!
 

R. Seltza

Well-Known Member
"To thine own self be true" sounds like a Middle-English, Shakespearean way of saying "be true/trustworthy to yourself", which I believe can be translated as esto tibi ipsi fidus.

By any chance, did you have another meaning in mind with the phrase "to thine own self be true"?
 

Bitmap

Civis Illustris
It's from Shakespeare's Hamlet and it's Early Modern English.

I don't think you should try to translate Shakespeare for the purpose of making it sound more elated. You cannot really improve on the English original in my opinion.
 

R. Seltza

Well-Known Member
Translating it may not exactly make it sound more exultant, but if that's what the OP wants, then I don't see much harm in trying our hand (as dishonorable as that may sound to devoted Shakespeare fans).
 

Adrian

Civis Illustris
Duty is the essence of manhood
I was personally thinking of natura virtutis est officium curare


English
Etymology
From a monologue delivered by the character Polonius in Act I Scene III of Hamlet by William Shakespeare.
Proverb
to thine own self be true

  1. Be yourself; be true to yourself; do not engage in self-deception.
I would rather see naturam sequere tuam than fidus [sis/ esto] tibi ipsi (which I find way too literal)
Edit:

one could even say Vive secundum naturam tuam
However @Bitmap has a point in his earlier post - original Shakespeare quote is lofty enough. Attempting to translating it into latin does take away some of the grandeur.
 
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Issacus Divus

ᛋᚢᚾᚢ ᚱᛖᛟᚱᛞᚲᚤᚾᛁᚾᚷᚨᛋ
This is irrelevant, but Shakespearean and Middle English kinda can't go together. He wrote in Early Modern English.
 

Hemo Rusticus

J. Wellington Wimpy
This is irrelevant, but Shakespearean and Middle English kinda can't go together. He wrote in Early Modern English.
Sƿa hadde Bitmap ʒecƿeden on his poste se ðe fifta ƿæs, ðu fili Ƿociregis!
 

ursuben

New Member
Thanks R and others. That was what I was trying to say with the quote, yes. I hadn't thought about it like that, Bitmap. Good point and sorry for stirring up a debate! My son had taken some Latin, thought this would be a small Easter egg for him to unravel. Much appreciated to all. This is a great forum.
 

syntaxianus

Civis Illustris
summa virilitatis in officio constat.

= The essence of manhood consists in duty.

officium est virilitatis summa.

= Duty is the essence of manhood.
 
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