Tattoo Time is a storm in which we are all lost

Tinaa

New Member
Hello, can someone please translate

'Time is a storm in which we are all lost'

For a tattoo, as close as possible :) Thanks.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Hello,

By "lost", do you mean going astray or vanishing from existence and memory?
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
OK. That was my first interpretation but I wanted to make sure, since, after all, we get "lost" in time in the other sense as well.

You could say:

Tempus procella est in qua omnes erramus.
 
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Michael Zwingli

Active Member
@Pacifica, is there any particular reason that you use procella, given the semantically-based opportunity for what seems like quite a good alliteration, namely: tempus tempestas est in qua omnes erramus? In this, tempestas alliterates not only with tempus, but also with est (a secondary meaning of the term "alliteration", the recurrence of a series of letters in the stressed syllables of adjacent words, as was the case in Anglo-Saxon alliterative meter).

EDIT: Also, a question just occurred to me. For something like a tattoo or a motto, do you tend to recommend capitalizing the first letter of the phrase as in modern sentence style, or leaving it lowercase as in classical style?
 
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Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
@Pacifica, is there any particular reason that you use procella, given the senantically-based opportunity for what seems like quite a good alliteration, namely: tempus tempestas est in qua omnes erramus? In this, tempestas alliterates not only with tempus, but also with est (a secondary meaning of the term "alliteration", the same vowel being stressed in adjacent words).
I in fact deliberately avoided the etymological repetition. It sounded weird to me, and even possibly confusing (given that tempestas itself can also mean a time period). But I guess it's arguable.
EDIT: Also, a question just occurred to me. For something like a tattoo or a motto, do you tend to recommend capitalizing the first letter of the phrase as in modern sentence style, or leaving it lowercase as in classical style?
I don't recommend anything in particular.
 

Michael Zwingli

Active Member
Haha, I didn't expect you to reply till somewhat later! It is quite early in your locale. As for me, it is quite late here; I've got alot on my mind, and am having trouble sleeping.
(Regarding initial capitalization) I don't recommend anything in particular.
What might your thoughts be about the question? I myself kind of favor maintaining lowercase, but I can't really say there is a particularly good reason for that...just to make it different from a modern sentence.
 

Michael Zwingli

Active Member
I in fact deliberately avoided the etymological repetition. It sounded weird to me, and even possibly confusing (given that tempestas itself can also mean a time period).
I was sure that it was a deliberate choice on your part. For you to not have seen that would have been absurdly strange.

My thinking was that the descendants of tempestas are the primary terms for "storm" in all the daughter languages (Spanish, Protuguese, Italian...), and tempest means "a storm" in English as well. In contrast, procella has no descendants with this meaning in any European language that I know of, rendering tempestas more familiar than it as a reference to "a storm" today.

Curiously, procella seems to have a Sanskrit cognate (I think it is transliterated prehera) which has descendants meaning "a storm" in Hindi, Urdu, and Javanese/Indonesian.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Well, if we were to be truly true to the Roman way of writing, we would be using no punctuation, or at most some interpuncts; wecouldevenrunwordstogetherwithoutanyspaces; and we wouldn't use capitalization in the discriminate modern way, but we would write either all in caps, or all in lower case. Roman lapidary inscriptions were in all caps, often with interpuncts between words. It can be argued that Roman cursive, used in letters and the like, was all caps, or it can be argued that it was all lower case, depending how you look at it. Basically, there wasn't really any lower case/upper case distinction back then as we understand it today; there were just different types of writing. But for many centuries now, people have been writing Latin with the punctuation and capitalization rules of their own day, maybe because it's more convenient. If someone wants to get a tattoo in Roman cursive or lapidary style, though, why not? It can be nice. But I'm not specifically "recommending" it over a different choice.
 
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Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
My thinking was that the descendants of tempestas are the primary terms for "storm" in all the daughter languages (Spanish, Protuguese, Italian...), and tempest means "a storm" in English as well. In contrast, procella has no descendants with this meaning in any European language that I know of, rendering tempestas more familiar than it as a reference to "a storm".
Whether a Latin word has descendants in modern languages isn't a criterion for me to use it or not. Why should it be? Now I suppose it can happen that a translation requester for some reason prefers something that's vaguely recognizable, but it won't be any concern of mine unless they specify it.
 

Michael Zwingli

Active Member
Pax, I just looked it up, and I was wrong. Procella does indeed have descendants in the Romance Languages, and apparently in English as well. Apparently, in all of the Romance languages but Italian, the descendant is basically a poetic term, and in English procelle is an obsolete word, which would explain why I have never heard it .
Whether a Latin word has descendants in modern languages isn't a criterion for me to use it or not. Why should it be?
Well, I was thinking that the familiarity of the terms tempest (English), tempeste/tempete (Old French and French, respectively) and tempesta (Spanish, Portuguese and Italian) might remove, for a speaker of one of those languages, the semantic ambiguity of Latin tempestas to which you referred, allowing one to make use of the alliterative possibilities.
 

Michael Zwingli

Active Member
It's clunky.
Yeah, I guess I see what you mean by that, after having enunciated both sentences several times. Procella is a rather nice sounding word; prettier and smoother than tempestas, it is definitely not onomatopoeic at all! It also has the benefit of seeming to be one of the few descendants of our long-lost verb cello.

Thanks for keeping me company during my insomnia! I'm going to put my head on the pillow, now, and see if I can't get some sleep, despite the procella occurring in my mind right now. Jeez, it's 0125, and I have to be out of bed by 0600 the latest.

EDIT: After 0300, and I still can't get to sleep. Nothing to do but surf the Fora, and see what kind of trouble I can get into...
 
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EstQuodFulmineIungo

Auditor et Discipulus
in all of the Romance languages but Italian
Wait wait. Dante has it:

Oh trina luce che ’n unica stella
scintillando a lor vista, sì li appaga!
guarda qua giuso a la nostra procella!

.....................O trinal beam
Of individual star, that charmst them thus,
Vouchsafe one glance to gild our storm below

Although, I woudn't use it in today's Italian, because most people would understand "porcella", which is a derogatory term for a "woman of ill repute".
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I now remember coming across the adjective "procellous" in English. I don't think I'd ever seen the noun itself, though — neither in English nor in French (well, no wonder; it's Old French).
 

Michael Zwingli

Active Member
I now remember coming across the adjective "procellous" in English. I don't think I'd ever seen the noun itself, though — neither in English nor in French (well, no wonder; it's Old French).
In English the noun was (is?) procelle, "storm"/"tempest". It is now considered to be "obsolete", so is probably listed in only the most extensive lexica, such as the OED and Webster's Unabridged. Procellous is obviously derived within English from procelle, since there was no procellosus in Latin (and such a construction would have been semantically suspect, at any rate).
 
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Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
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Bestiola

Moderatrix
Staff member
Pax, I just looked it up, and I was wrong. Procella does indeed have descendants in the Romance Languages, and apparently in English as well. Apparently, in all of the Romance languages but Italian, the descendant is basically a poetic term, and in English procelle is an obsolete word, which would explain why I have never heard it .

Well, I was thinking that the familiarity of the terms tempest (English), tempeste/tempete (Old French and French, respectively) and tempesta (Spanish, Portuguese and Italian) might remove, for a speaker of one of those languages, the semantic ambiguity of Latin tempestas to which you referred, allowing one to make use of the alliterative possibilities.
Not all romance languages, Romanian has furtună, while Spanish has tempestaD, and Portuguese has tempestaDE

Procellous is obviously derived within English from procelle, since there was no procellosus in Latin (and such a construction would have been semantically suspect, at any rate).
"The rare English adjective procellous “turbulent, stormy (as the sea)” comes via Middle French procelleux from Latin procellōsus “stormy, squally,” a derivative of the noun procella “violent wind, gale.” "

"Early 17th century; earliest use found in Thomas Goffe (?1591–1629), playwright and Church of England clergyman. From French †procelleux from classical Latin procellōsus stormy from procella + -ōsus."

 
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