How do you say forever in Latin

77 great Latin proverbs, quotes & idioms [+ translation]

Latin proverbs and idioms can be used in many ways. Whether in everyday conversations, in greeting cards, in bachelor, master or term papers or as WhatsApp status: Latin lives and brings many advantages. We have 77 examples with translation for you.

Latin lives

The Latin language is alive - in everyday life

Latin was declared a dead language, but Latin proverbs and idioms can still be found in large numbers in our everyday language. As is so often the case, the lines between proverb and idiom are blurred. One example is “ad absurdum”, which means something like “to prove something as nonsensical”. This idiom has properties of a proverb in that it can only be used in this combination of words. The combination is otherwise flexible. For example, we use the phrase "take something, someone or yourself to the point of absurdity". The difference to the proverb is precisely this flexibility. A classic proverb only occurs in one fixed form.

Uses: Latin is everywhere

Where do we meet Latin? And why is it useful to know some Latin terms? Many Latin expressions are so firmly integrated into our language that we no longer even notice them. We first have to realize that they are Latin words at all. We have put together a small list of Latin terms for you that will prove to you that you too have some knowledge of Latin. A few of the following idioms are even required for language learners of German (for example, knowledge of the word "circa" is required for language level B1).

  1. Et cetera
    Translation: and the rest of the things
  2. Approximately
    Translation: around, near, approximately, against
  3. In red light
    Translation: in the act
  4. Nota bene
    Translation: mind you
  5. Versus
    Translation: against
  6. Status quo
    Translation: current status, actual status

But we also regularly come across Latin proverbs at school and university. Old school teachers in particular love to incorporate Latin into their lessons. Even if the Latinum still exists as a prerequisite for some courses, it is dwindling more and more. On the other hand, there is the general feeling that Latin exudes something educated and serious. As a rule, it is the learned and well-read who can still speak the Latin language. It is not only found in numerous scientific texts, but is also particularly suitable for bachelor, master or term papers. Here are some common examples:

  1. Ad acta
    Translation: To the files (today: "put something aside" - tick something off, consider it done)
  2. Anno Domini
    Translation: In the year of the Lord
  3. A priori
    Translation: From the start
  4. corpus delicti
    Translation: evidence
  5. Curriculum Vitae (short: C.V.)
    Translation: CV
  6. De facto
    Translation: Indeed
  7. Expressis verbis
    Translation: Literally
  8. In medias res
    Translation: Straight to the point
  9. Modus operandi
    Translation: way of acting
  10. vice versa
    Translation: vice versa
  11. All in all
    Translation: All in all

Latin proverbs: 6 benefits

You don't need a Latinum to take advantage of the Latin language. A few basic knowledge is often enough. You can acquire this basic knowledge particularly easily through proverbs. We have summarized all the advantages for you, which should show you why it is worthwhile to have some knowledge of Latin.

  1. You understand scientific texts better in school and university.
  2. You understand technical terms better. For example, “exhibit”, “transcendence” and “denotation” come from Latin.
  3. You can make a good impression with written work and describe things better by phrasing them succinctly in Latin terms.
  4. You can derive different languages ​​from Latin, thus understanding more vocabulary in more languages ​​without having learned them explicitly. Latin has connections in particular to English and Romance languages ​​(Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese, etc.). For example, “man” means “homine” in Latin and “homme” in French; "Woman" means "mulier" in Latin and "mujer" in Spanish.
  5. You can set a Latin proverb as your WhatsApp status.
  6. You can write a variety of Latin wisdom in various greeting and greeting cards.

77 Latin proverbs and idioms with translation

77 Latin proverbs and idioms with translation

In the following you will find many well-known but also some unknown Latin proverbs and idioms. Some of them were once quotations from well-known personalities, others will be known to you from German translations. For example “De gustibus non est disputandum.”, In German: There is no arguing about taste. Many of the Latin wisdoms were passed on over the centuries, have a high historical value and are still supposed to bring us closer to the meaning of life with their truths.

Here you can learn more about the meaning of the proverbs you already know or learn new ones. Expand your vocabulary or make a good impression on your next term paper. We've arranged the proverbs and sayings alphabetically to make it easier for you to find what you're looking for.

Latin proverbs are useful as life wisdom for the following occasions:
Birth, baptism, birthday wishes, communion, confirmation, youth consecration, wedding, silver wedding, golden wedding, condolences, Christmas and New Year.

  1. Abyssus abyssum invocat.
    Translation: One mistake leads to the other.
  2. ad absurdum
    Translation: To prove something as nonsensical.
  3. Alea iacta est.
    Translation: The die is cast. (Quote from Caesar)
  4. Aliquid stat per aliquo
    Translation: something stands for something
  5. Amantes amentes.
    Translation: Lovers are mad. (Quote from Terence)
  6. Amor est pretiosior auro.
    Translation: Love is more precious than gold.
  7. Barba decet virum.
    Translation: The beard makes the man.
  8. Bene docet, qui bene distinguit.
    Translation: He who clearly explains the differences teaches well.
  9. Captatio benevolentiae
    Translation: Hunt for benevolence (similar to "fishing for compliments")
  10. Carpe Diem.
    Translation: Seize the day. (Quote from Horace)
  11. Carpe noctem.
    Translation: Seize the night.
  12. Caritas omnia potest.
    Translation: Love can do everything.
  13. Caritas omnia tolerat.
    Translation: Love endures everything.
  14. Cave canem!
    Translation: Beware of the dog!
  15. Cessante causa cessat effectus.
    Translation: If the cause disappears, the effect also disappears.
  16. Cogito ergo sum.
    Translation: I think therefore I am. (Quote from René Descartes)
  17. Contra vim mortis non est medicamen in hortis.
    Translation: There is no herb against death. (Quote from Salerno)
  18. De gustibus non est disputandum.
    Translation: There's no arguing about taste.
  19. De mortuis nihil nisi bene!
    Translation: Only good things about the dead! (After Diogenes)
  20. This diem docet.
    Translation: One day teaches the other. (After Publilius Syrus)
  21. Docendo discimus.
    Translation: We learn by teaching.
  22. Dum differtur, vita transcurrit.
    Translation: As you put it off, life goes by.
  23. Dum spiro, spero.
    Translation: As long as I breathe, I hope. (Quote from Cicero)
  24. Duo quum faciunt idem, non est idem.
    Translation: When two do the same thing, it's not the same.
  25. Etiam tacere est respondere.
    Translation: Silence is an answer too.
  26. Ergo bibamus!
    Translation: So let's drink! (Quote from Pope Martin IV.)
  27. Errare humanum est.
    Translation: To err is human. (Quote from Cicero)
  28. Exercitatio artem ready.
    Translation: Practice makes perfect.
  29. Expressis verbis
    Translation: With explicit (exactly the) words
  30. Faber est suae quisque fortunae.
    Translation: Everyone is forge their own happiness.
  31. Fama crescit eundo.
    Translation: The rumor grows as it spreads.
  32. Fames est optimus coquus.
    Translation: Hunger is the best cook.
  33. Horas non numero nisi serenas.
    Translation: I only count the cheerful hours.
  34. Imago est animi vultus.
    Translation: The face is an image of the soul. (Quote from Cicero)
  35. In omnem eventum
    Translation: Just in case
  36. In optima forma
    Translation: In the best condition, flawless
  37. In vino veritas
    Translation: There is truth in wine.
  38. Put artis
    Translation: According to all the rules of the art
  39. Loco citato
    Translation: In the (already) quoted place, in the place mentioned
  40. Manus manum lavat.
    Translation: One hand washes the other. (Quote from Seneca)
  41. Male parta, male dilabuntur.
    Translation: How won, so melted away. (Literally: badly acquired things come to an end badly.)
  42. Mea culpa
    Translation: My fault.
  43. Melius est prevenire quam preveniri.
    Translation: It is better that you anticipate than that you be anticipated.
  44. Memento mori.
    Translation: Remember that you have to die. (Quote from Persius)
  45. Nam quod in iuventus non discitur, in matura aetate nescitur.
    Translation: What you don't learn in youth, you never learn in old age. (Today: What Hans doesn't learn, Hans never learns.)
  46. Nolens volens
    Translation: good or bad (after Cicero)
  47. Nomen est omen.
    Translation: The name is a sign.
  48. Nulla vita sine musica.
    Translation: No life without the music
  49. Omne initium difficile est.
    Translation: Every beginning is difficult.
  50. Have omnia tempus.
    Translation: Everything has its time.
  51. Onus est honos.
    Translation: Dignity is a burden.
  52. Ora et labora.
    Translation: Pray and Work.
  53. Pars pro toto
    Translation: A part stands for a whole (usually used as a rhetorical figure).
  54. Pecunia non olet.
    Translation: Money doesn't stink. (Quote from Emperor Vespasian)
  55. Potius sero quam numquam.
    Translation: Better late than never.
  56. Praevalent inlicita.
    What is forbidden has its special charm. (Quote from Tacitus)
  57. Prudentia potentia est.
    Translation: Knowledge is power!
  58. Quaere et invenies.
    Translation: Search and you will find.
  59. Qui alterum incusat probri eum ipsum se intueri oportet.
    Translation: Anyone who accuses another of a bad deed should look at himself. (Quote from Plautus)
  60. Qui audet adipiscitur!
    Translation: Who dares wins!
  61. Quis custodit custodes?
    Translation: Who guards the guards?
  62. Qui tacet, consentire videtur.
    Translation: Whoever is silent seems to agree. (Quote from Bonifaz)
  63. Quod tibi fieri non vis, alteri ne feceris!
    Translation: What you don't want someone to do to you, don't do it to anyone else! (Quote from Emperor Alexander Severus)
  64. Qui tacet, consentire videtur.
    Translation: Whoever is silent seems to agree. (Quote from Bonifaz)
  65. Similis simili gaudet.
    Translation: Equal and equal like to join.
  66. Requiescat in pace (short: RIP)
    Translation: He / She rest in peace.
  67. Roma locuta, causa finita.
    Translation: Rome has spoken, the case is decided. (After Augustine)
  68. Si vis amari, ama!
    Translation: Do you want to be loved, dear!
  69. Sol lucet omnibus.
    Translation: The sun is shining for everyone.
  70. Suum cuique.
    Translation: To each his own. (Quote from Cicero)
  71. Tempus fugit, amor manet.
    Translation: Time flies, love remains.
  72. Totum pro parte
    Translation: The whole stands for a part (opposite of "pars pro toto")
  73. Ut sementem feceris, ita metes.
    Translation: As you sow, so will you reap. (Quote from Cicero)
  74. Utile dulci.
    Translation: Combine the useful with the pleasant. (Quote from Horace)
  75. Veni vidi vici.
    Translation: I came, I saw, I won. (Quote from Gaius Julius Caesar)
  76. Vide, cui fidas!
    Translation: Look who you trust!
  77. Vivere est militare.
    Translation: To live is to fight.
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