The journey to Latin

Rudis

Member
I'm not sure if this post has existed before or not.

For those of us that were drawn to Latin and not have Latin forced upon us in school, as some do.

What drew you?

For me, it was always the love of history. Back in the 90s there was a show that dealt with supernatural antiquities and on a statue was the Latin phrase, CAVE FONS MALI, Beware the source of evil. I thought that was cool. The show died after one season, but it's mark was permanent. The movie Event Horizon with it's quote just added more momentum.

It was a trip to Durham university that was the clincher for me. They were excavating an old part of the property as an archaeological dig and unearthed Roman objects. As a sword restorer, I gravitated to the Gladius behind the glass. I wanted to read the words etched on some on the artifacts. So it began...
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
There have certainly been discussions on this forum before about people's reasons for learning Latin, and maybe there has been a thread specifically for it, but if so I don't quite remember.

For me, it occurred basically like this: I learned English and enjoyed the experience so much that I wanted to learn another language. While Latin may not be the most obvious option, it came to my mind because I was curious to see the source of my mother tongue (French), and I guess I was also somewhat attracted by the "aura of mystery" that many (pre-)beginners think Latin endowed with.

By the way, "Beware the source of evil" should be cave fontem mali. Cave fons mali would mean "Beware, source of evil!" as if you were addressing the source of evil and telling it to beware.
 

R. Seltza

Well-Known Member
For those of us that were drawn to Latin and not have Latin forced upon us in school, as some do.

What drew you?
For what it's worth, my original interest was generated from my desire to have certain phrases translated for custom patches that I would put on my backpacks & some other luggage. I wanted the phrases to be in another language & preferably one that had some prestige to it. Latin naturally satisfied the requirement better than the other languages that I had considered at the time. I knew that Google Translate was a crappy option & I wanted the translations to be as accurate as possible. After a good bit of research, I had found this forum & determined that this would be the best resource for me to use to accomplish my objectives. I posted my 1st translation request & I was pleased at the result. I posted the next one & I'd also gotten good results.

I'd realized that I'd basically found a goldmine worth of quality Latin, which had inspired me to generate more & more ideas for things to be translated. It eventually got to the point where I decided that it would be very beneficial for me to learn Latin instead of having to request translations all of the time. Learning Latin, of all languages, also seemed like a very interesting endeavor. What used to be just a resource for getting certain tasks done became a resource for linguistic development & education. Not only have I learned a lot about Latin, but I've also learned a lot about language in general. It's been quite eye-opening how I evaluate language now, even with everyday English. It's also provided a very good social, intellectual, & leisurely outlet that I now regularly frequent (especially intellectual, as a good amount of the regular members on this site tend to be smarter & have a much stronger command of philosophy & other intellectual matters than most people I meet in my life, but I digress).

Looking back on the 2 years & 5 months that I've been apart of this forum, it's played a significant role in my life ever since. Of course, learning any language (especially Latin) isn't easy & I still have a number of rough edges in my Latin (as many of the other members can attest for (maybe even more passionately than I suspect)), but it's a work in progress. Despite the fact that the road of learning this language has often been rough (& sometimes even downright demoralizing), I'm glad that I've embarked on the journey to learn linguam latinam.

Prosperus in itinere tuo sis, Rudis.
 

Rudis

Member
No idea... Seriously... What a waste of my life studying this useless language... But for some reason I love it...
I love it too. It's the only language that draws me back to the "books".
 

Rudis

Member
Prosperus in itinere tuo sis, Rudis.
Thank you. I tried translating once for a member here, though I believe I made others laugh instead...:hat: My pleasure.

Anyway, as a Roman would say..."Laus pertendo!"
★"Press on to glory!"

Well...I think I put that sentence together right...don't wet yourselves at at once. The janitor can't handle large pools...

which books?
Books referring to studying. "Stick your nose back in those books and pass young man..."

Latin itself calls me kinda like that. My mind, like your I suspect, demands more.
 

Rudis

Member
My mind demands more weed. Good quality weed. Then what happens in my head is more interesting than what you'd find in the books...
Oh I bet. Have you been chatting to Cicero over the qualities of weed?
 

Rudis

Member

Rudis

Member
Harsh brother. *deep pull of joint* where's the love?

Well, I tried.
 

R. Seltza

Well-Known Member
Thank you. I tried translating once for a member here, though I believe I made others laugh instead...:hat: My pleasure.
In the past, I had often provided translations as a way to learn more about Latin. Though I did learn a good bit from it, I'd also made a number of mistakes (as other members can definitely vouch for). As concerns about the quality of translations being provided to people arose, there was probably more uneasiness, concern, & worry as opposed to laughs for some of the other members. I was eventually discouraged from providing translations unless I was absolutely sure of its accuracy. That's (one of) the reasons I now respond to translation requests a lot less often. This is also the story behind the 1st 2 sentences in my signature.

At one point in time, I also thought that there may have been some kind of humorous value if I made a translation mistake. Maybe there is some, but other members may probably find less levity in it than we'd suspect.

I know that what I've just typed sounds depressing, but on the bright side of things, there are other places on this forum which are much more light-hearted.


Anyway, as a Roman would say..."Laus pertendo!"
★"Press on to glory!"

Well...I think I put that sentence together right...don't wet yourselves at at once. The janitor can't handle large pools...
Lol, I'm sure janitors have handled seas of piss before without much problem. Levity aside, It looks like you're experiencing the same uncertainty & uneasiness that I felt a lot back then (& sometimes even today) when posting Latin. I know the feeling all too well. After working on your Latin a good bit, it does subside by a significant amount (though it may not entirely go away).

Anyways, I'm not familiar with the Romans saying that. Maybe they did, maybe they didn't. I don't really know. However, I do know that at 1st glance, I'd personally translate "Press on to glory!" (which sounds like an imperative command to one person) as pertende ad laudem!
 
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