"Home is where the heart is"

JJ1

New Member
Salvete, omnes!

I see that the phrase, "home is where the heart is," is attributed to Pliny, but am unable to find either the source or the original quotation in Latin. I have seen attempts to translate it from English back into Latin (usually something like, ubi domus, ibi cor), but what I am looking for is the actual Latin phrase attributed to Pliny.

Any help would be much appreciated.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Hmm... Which Pliny? After some search of key words in Pliny the Younger, I didn't find anything of the kind. It could also be a false attribution... it happens. Especially when no exact reference (like, in which book it is, etc.) is given.

But whatever the case I already wanted to let you know (lest you decide to use it) that the translation you've found isn't quite correct. Its author seems (probably unvoluntarily) to have turned things around and produced a translation that means more like "The heart is where home is."
 

Etaoin Shrdlu

μεσσηγυδορποχέστης
Whenever something is aid to be a quote, but no source is given, it's suspicious. The traditional attribution seems to be to Pliny the Elder, but some hedge their bets by throwing in 'said to be'. I did a very superficial word search and found nothing, but didn't expect to. The first example in English of this precise form of words appears to be from the 19th; there are earlier versions of the sentiment.

I can't help thinking there must be a passage or to from antiquity along those lines, though – not the origin of the phrase, but expressing similar sentiments. People didn't travel for fun as a rule, and it wasn't very comfortable, so they had more reasons to be happy when they got back than the modern jet-setter, even if they didn't really get on with their ostensible loved ones, and the dog bit them. But I can't think of any example where someone generalises about the human condition; they're just happy to be back. Perhaps someone with a less patchier brain might think of something.

On an unrelated note, it was interesting* that it took less than 25 minutes for Google to pick up on this thread.

*YMMV
 

AoM

nulli numeri
Just searched through all of the Naturalis Historia, and didn't find anything.

It's worth noting that the quote isn't on the wikiquote page for him (a quote they would have undoubtedly included if it were his).

Cicero's probably expressed the sentiment in his letters somewhere.
 

Laurentius

Civis Illustris
Just searched through all of the Naturalis Historia, and didn't find anything.

It's worth noting that the quote isn't on the wikiquote page for him (a quote they would have undoubtedly included if it were his).

Cicero's probably expressed the sentiment in his letters somewhere.
It's in the Italian Wiki page. I hate quotes, most of the times they don't even tell you where they are taken from.
I found this, not sure how trustworthy it is.
 

JJ1

New Member
Thank you, everyone, for your helpful suggestions and insights.

I also suspected a false or suspect attribution.

The closest analogue I am able to find in ancient literature is not classical but biblical (Matthew 6:22/Luke 12:34): "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also" (In the Vulgate: ubi enim est thesaurus tuus ibi est et cor tuum).

The only other I can think of is also religious, and the resemblance (if there is one) is more remote than the one I quoted above. There's a hymn, Ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est.



Can anyone think of other analogues (even from vernacular literature) - ancient, medieval, Renaissance, modern? I would love to compile a list.
 
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