Geek or Nerd

A

Anonymous

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Hello Scholars,

I need the Latin word for "Geek" or "Nerd". Ultimately I'm trying to translate "Teacher of Nerds", so it would be Magister ...

Any help would be appreciated! Thanks!
 

Gregorius

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Re: Need Latin for "Geek" or "Nerd"

This is a tough one. I would suggest "Magister Alumnorum Diligentium" (literally "teacher of diligent pupils"). If "diligent pupils" doesn't quite convey the full force of geekdom in your perception, then you could try the superlative "Magister Alumnorum Diligentissimorum" (literally "teacher of the most diligent pupils"). Other possibilities include:

Magister Alumnorum Excellentium
Magister Alumnorum Intelligentissimorum
Magister Alumnorum Industriorum
Magister Alumnorum Magis Industriorum
 
A

Anonymous

Guest

Re: Need Latin for "Geek" or "Nerd"

Thanks Gregorius,

It is a doozie, isn't it? I'm tempted to think that nerds never existed until recently...

Your suggestions are good, I will put them forward for consideration.

If anyone else has an idea for "nerds" or "geeks", I would appreciate it!

Thanks all.
 

Gregorius

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Re: Need Latin for "Geek" or "Nerd"

CrankyOldBugger dixit:
I'm tempted to think that nerds never existed until recently...
Well, they did and they didn't. Dedicated scholars and innately brilliant people have existed since time immemorial, but the concept of a socially underdeveloped youth whose life effectively revolves around some form of academia is indeed a very new idea, particularly if you consider the mockery often inherent in the label. In fact, I think in Roman times a dedication to academia was believed to make someone more socially adept. I think it's only in modern youth culture that sociability and scholarship came to be perceived as opposing forces.
 

Matthaeus

Vemortuicida strenuus

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Re: Need Latin for "Geek" or "Nerd"

I think it has all to do with the demise of Classical education, and the pursuit of learning, knowledge & wisdom just for the sake of themselves altogether. We do not cherish these values anymore like in former times, especially in the Classical era of the Ancients. Our Western culture is becoming more and more decadent, intent upon consumptionism, consumerism, sports, materialism, etc...I suggest two very good books upon this deplorable, but very true subject: 1) From Dawn to Decadence by Jacques Barzun, 2) Who Killed Homer by Hanson and Heath.
In fact, I shall quote an essential paragraph from the latter: "The death of Homer means an erasure of an entire way of looking at the world, a way diametrically opposite to the new gods that now drive America: therapeutics, moral relativism, blind allegiance to progress, and the glorification of material culture. The loss of Classical learning and the Classical spirit as an antidote to the toxin of popular culture has been grievous to America, and it can be sensed in the rise of almost everything antithetical to Greek ideas and values: the erosion of the written and spoken word; the rise of commitments, both oral and written, that are not binding; the search for material and sensual gratification in place of spiritual growth and sacrifice; the growing conformity of urban city life at the expense of the individual and the ethos of individualism; ahistoricism and a complete surrender to the present; the demise of the middle class."
I hope this gives you enough food for thought.
 

cinefactus

Censor

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Re: Need Latin for "Geek" or "Nerd"

Gregorius dixit:
Dedicated scholars and innately brilliant people have existed since time immemorial, but the concept of a socially underdeveloped youth whose life effectively revolves around some form of academia is indeed a very new idea, particularly if you consider the mockery often inherent in the label.
I hadn't thought about the social aspect, more the non sporting aspect...

Presumably Cicero, hating the army, would have qualified as a Roman geek...
 

JaimeB

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Let's not confuse geeks and nerds with dorks, please. Nerds and geeks are intelligent, but (at least in the original usage) socially inept, whereas dorks are both stupid and socially inept, an admirable trick to be able to pull off.

Dorks are jealous of the intelligence of geeks and nerds, and therefore invent these terms to denigrate them. O superbitas!

There are attempts at rehabilitating the term geek. I especially like "alpha geek" (modeled on "alpha male," I guess) to designate the technician's version of the peritus peritorum.

Maybe the best Latin translation for geek/nerd would be peritus absurdus, using absurdus here with its meaning of awkward, rather than "absurd" in the English sense.
 

Diaphanus

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John Traupman, in his Conversational Latin for Oral Proficiency, Fourth Edition, has inconcinnus/inconcinna for "nerd." He doesn't have anything for "geek," though.
 

Nikolaos

schmikolaos

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How about an oxymoron for "nerd"... scitus stultus?

Edit - Ah, I didn't see Jaime's peritus absurdus.
 
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