Looking for a list of cool Latin phrases?
If so, we've studied many Latin phrases and quotes and assembled a list for you. You'll know from our successful article on Latin phrases about death that we know how to find the coolest phrases for you.
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Ultimate List of Cool Latin Phrases
Here is our list of some of the best and coolest Latin phrases that will add color to every conversation you use it. Latin phrases aren't just cool because they're in another, tougher language - they often contain powerful meanings and symbolism. When you use these powerful proverbs correctly, you'll impress those who listen. Just remember to provide translations where needed.
Category of Phrases
5 Funny With a Bit of Coolness Latin Lines
Who said cool Latin phrases couldn't also be a little funny? These proverbs make a weird sense, despite the wording translating into something silly. If you want to be a little funny and use cool Latin one-liners, these lines are the perfect blend of fun and interesting.
1. Fortis fortuna adiuvat. - Fortune favors the bold.
Fortuna, the Latin word for fortune, is a concept commonly seen in many a proverb. It's a concept that started in Latin. In fact, the English language's entire usage originates from the very idea. So, this motto, unique to Latin, is about how good luck happens to those who are bold and courageous.
2. Barba non facit philosophum. - A beard doesn't make one a philosopher.
When one pictures a philosopher, they usually portray them as a bearded man of considerable age. This quote turns that notion on its head, saying that having a beard doesn't make you a philosopher. Basically, this quote means that having one thing doesn't automatically make you another.
3. Festina Lente. - Hurry slowly.
It sounds like an oxymoron, doesn't it? How can you hurry but slowly? The line's meaning is this: if you want to hurry, you usually rush. But if you rush, you make mistakes, or the product becomes worse. So, it means that you have to be quick - but not rush things through. That way, you still accomplish something in time without sacrificing the quality of the end product.
4. Nemo enim fere saltat sobrius. - Nobody dances sober.
This line is the shortened version of a famous line by Roman lawyer Cicero. The full line essentially says, "Almost nobody dances sober unless, of course, he is insane." In ancient times, dancing was a form of revelry and vice, which meant that few danced, and many did not dance for themselves. The line basically means that you don't do debauchery (like dancing) unless you're drunk or insane.
5. Plenus venter non studet libenter. - A full belly does not like studying.
Do you tend to study with a full stomach? The answer is probably no - when you're exceptionally full, the first thing you want to do is rest. This proverb is about the millennium-old truth that people don't like doing things when full.
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6 Cool Latin One Liners About Life
Life is an incredibly deep subject, no matter where or when you are in the world. Life is full of mysteries, the likes of which we can't hope to decipher in our lifetime... let alone the test of time. So when you want to talk about life's strange truths and ironies, here are some cool Latin one-liners about life to use.
6. Sapere aude - Dare to know.
This one-liner is a challenge: Do you dare to know? Knowledge is power but can also be a burden. So, if there is truth to be found, do you dare to know about it? The line essentially challenges you to dare to use your mind to find the reason for something.
7. Memento Vivere. - Remember to live.
Unlike the equally popular Memento Mori, which means "remember that you are mortal," memento vivere does not talk about mortality and instead is about the fact that you are alive - and because you are alive, you must live. There is joy and pleasure in life, and it is a right of the living to find it.
8. Carpe Diem - Seize the day.
Carpe Diem is such a common Latin quote that even you must have heard of it before. It means "seize the day" and is an inspiring common Latin phrase that tells you to go out there and achieve something. Do you have the determination to Carpe Diem?
9. Ex Nihilo Nihil Fit. - From nothing comes nothing.
When translated into English, it seems obvious; that nothing comes from nothing. But at the time, it was a major cosmological statement. How did the universe come to be?
Parmenides argued that the world didn't just come from nothing: that there had to be more than zero in the most primal form of the universe.
10. Audere est facere. - To dare is to do.
What is the most daring way to respond to a dare? It's to do the dare itself, of course, fearlessly. This one-liner echoes that notion: if you want, the most audacious way to respond to something is to do that very thing.
It can also mean, "if you dare, then do it."
11. Bona Fides - With good faith.
When used in English, Bona Fide means genuine. In its original Latin meaning, it means "with good faith," and what better way to show your good faith than to be as genuine as possible?
7 Latin Lines About Love
Love is a universal language, so it has its fair share of phrases in Latin too. Why not try some lovely Latin lines if you're running out of cute things to say to a girl? It may not be French, but it'll still bring a smile to their face once they know what it means.
12. Si vis Amari ama. - If you want to be loved, love.
The first step to being loved by others is to love yourself. Even Latin knows this transcendent truth. Whenever a friend or loved one deprecates themselves, use this line to get them to love themselves again.
13. Nunc scio quid sit Amor. - Now I know what love is.
This line originates from Virgil, where the author, after watching a mother and her son, comes to a realization. This phrase is best used when someone shows you their love - if you feel the warmth and affection for them, declaring that you understand their love reaffirms that wonderful feeling.
14. Quod nullis amor est medicabilis herbis. - Oh me! Love can not be cured by herbs.
Sometimes, love is equated to sickness, especially how you feel flush, and your head spins around someone you love deeply. Herbs (and medicine) can't cure that affliction. Love is extremely powerful and infectious, and this phrase communicates that.
15. Semper Fidelis - Always faithful.
Otherwise known by its shortened version, Semper Fi. It's the motto of the United States Marine Corps, and it means "always faithful." Whether in love, with your country, or with something else, Semper Fidelis is about always being faithful to it.
16. Amor est vitae essential - Love is the essence of life.
There would be no life if there were no love. Just as love is necessary to give birth to new life, love is necessary for people to live, too. This motto teaches us that love is essential for living - without it, what life is there to live?
17. Ubi Amor, ibi dolor. - Where (there is) love, there (is) pain.
Not every love story is a happy one. Sometimes, love can bring pain, too. When a friend hurts because of a relationship gone sour, tell them this: love and pain are intertwined, and you can't have one without the other.
Because they feel pain, it means they can also find love again.
18. Amor Vincit Omnia. - Love conquers all.
One of the most famous lines in the world. While the English translation is more well known, the Latin version preceded it. Love cannot be measured and gives great strength to those who feel it.
Love indeed conquers all, and a simple reminder of this can help another feel more secure.
4 Captivating Latin Lines To Show Your Latin Skills To Everyone
Some of these Latin lines have their English equivalents that are extremely popular. Have you heard the English translations of these Latin lines before? If so, let's see if you know the Latin versions of these captivating Latin lines... and if you don't, now you know where they come from.
19. Ceteris paribus - All other things being equal.
Ceteris Paribus is used primarily in science and economics as a way to explain cause and effect. Assuming "all other things being equal" means that all factors are generally predictable, which means that there is always a predictable outcome. In truth, variables exist and can influence the effect, but Ceteris Paribus is great for outlining what will usually happen.
20. Panem et circenses - Bread and circuses.
Food and entertainment are the most basic things that people need. So, when someone offers "bread and circuses," they provide exactly that. However, those aren't the only things people need.
People need much more than food and entertainment to lead a fulfilling life. So, this line means that you're only superficially providing what people need, but not some of the other things that make life more fulfilling and enjoyable.
21. Acta non Verba. - Actions, not words.
Actions speak louder than words. Pictures are worth a thousand words. While words contain their kind of power, springing into action is generally more effective at getting the point across than words ever can.
If a friend ever has trouble getting others to see their point of view, tell them this: it'll help get them to convince others better.
22. Audentes fortuna iuvat - Fortune favors the bold.
Or, in other words, "good things happen to those who act." Very rarely do good things happen to idle people - those who move their hands and feet make good things happen. Use this line to shake off hesitation, and start moving towards the good outcome you desire.
4 Famous and Cool Latin Statements You've Never Heard Of
Now that we've covered some more uncommon Latin statements, we'll move on to some of the most famous ones. You might have heard these in their Latin forms and wondered, "what does it mean?" Well, we're here to tell you exactly what they mean.
So, enjoy some of these famous Latin statements!
23. Castigat ridendo mores. - Laughing corrects morals.
Or, "one corrects customs by laughing at them." Some state this phrase as the basis of satire - that pointing things out, ridiculing, and laughing at them, is the best way to promote change. Sometimes, people don't see the problems of a certain thing unless it's pointed out to them, and laughing at them is one of the more striking ways to point it out.
24. Ad meliora - Towards better things.
This line is a part of the phrase "Ad meliora et ad maiora semper," which means "Always towards bigger and better things." It means that you should keep moving forward towards greener pastures, brighter futures, and the like. Life is best lived as a series of smaller goals leading to bigger ones, and this line exemplifies that.
25. Veni, Vidi, Vici. - I came, I saw, I conquered.
It is said that Julius Ceasar is the one who used this term in the way it's used today: to refer to a swift victory. It can also mean that to accomplish something or conquer it, you have to go there and do something. Without action, nothing can be conquered or won.
26. In vino veritas. - In wine, there is truth.
In vino veritas is a slightly flowery common Latin phrase that means: "In wine, there is truth." It basically means that, under the influence of alcohol, nobody has any reason to lie. Your true self is often exposed when you're inebriated because alcohol loosens inhibitions and removes hesitation.
Downloadable and Printable List of Latin Sayings With Cool Meanings
Here is a downloadable and printable list of Latin phrases that are cool to hear (right-click the image and select Save Image As...):
What Makes Latin Phrases Cool?
Mastering the use of powerful phrases in another language is in itself quite cool. Latin being a dead language means you are taking something that's fallen out of use and are keeping it alive through the usage of phrases from it. Not only that, Latin phrases are full of symbolism despite being somewhat short - the phrases have incredible brevity and depth of meaning.
Furthermore, much of modern media uses several of its phrases, helping the otherwise dead language stay relevant and trendy despite its age. So, Latin phrases are cool for many reasons, and many people find them cool as well.
Why Should You Learn Latin Phrases?
As stated above, Latin is finding plenty of use in modern media, science, law, and other fields of study. Learning them will help ease the confusion you get when encountering a Latin term in these fields... and also enables you to understand their use in media. Many English expressions also originate from Latin phrases, and learning their origins can help deepen your familiarity with them.
So, Latin, not just its phrases, has plenty of uses - learning from it can help you in many topics.
5 Famous Latin Books of All Time
Now that you've learned plenty of Latin phrases that will undoubtedly add color to your conversations, you're likely a little more interested in the language as a whole. If you'd like to learn more about Latin, here are some of the best and most famous books on Latin of all time - thankfully in English to help even new students learn.
Hopscotch - Julio Cortázar
This Latin-American novel tells the story of Horacio Oliviera. A child's death and the disappearance of his mistress, La Maga, prompt him to move to Buenos Aires and start a new life as a salesman. But astonishing adventures and a colorful cast of characters await him there.
An excellent read for those who want to learn a little Latin on the side.
The House of the Spirits - Isabel Allende
Isabel Allende's first bestseller novel, The House of the Spirits, is lauded as one of the most important novels of the twentieth century. It chronicles the troubled and interesting lives of the Trueba family. It spans three whole generations of the family members' lives in a magical story about love and fate.
Chronicle of a Death Foretold - Gabriel García Marquez
This story tells about a strange murder that happened 27 years before the story's beginning. An affair causes the groom to return the bride to her family in utter disgrace - and she is forced to reveal her lover. Yet, when her brothers threaten to murder that same man, no one seems to want to stop them - so why?
On the Nature of Things - Lucretius
Unlike the other books here, which are novels, On the Nature of Things is a poem. Full of scientific theories and philosophical musings, this book of poems combines powerful, fervid poetry with moral and philosophical quandaries about humanity and the spirit.
The Twelve Caesars - Suetonius
De vita Ceaesarum, its original name, is a set of biographies, twelve of Julius Ceasar and the first eleven emperors of the Roman Empire. It details their lives, accomplishments, and discussions about them and is perfect for those who love history and want to learn more about the most famous rulers of all time.
Frequently Asked Questions
Latin is difficult, and finding good phrases for it can be difficult. Do you have some more questions about Latin and if you can learn it? If so, I've answered some frequently asked questions about it that can shed some light on the subject.
Is Latin a dead language?
Latin is a dead language because it's not commonly used anymore, save for a handful of phrases that have become common in English. Things like memento mori, magna cum laude, ad hominem, ad infinitum, et cetera, and many a Latin legal term are all in use today, so the language hasn't truly died out - its usage has simply become ingrained in other languages.
How can I learn Latin easily?
English and Latin share many words because Latin words have bled into the English language. So, when learning Latin, it may be helpful for you to take an English word, see if it originates from Latin, and then Latin root to mind. Then, once you've learned a good host of words, learn Latin grammar and see how it changes each word.
Is Latin a hard language to learn?
The Latin language can be difficult to learn due to its grammar applying to nearly every word, changing it in various ways. Speaking with grammatical correctness is tough for even seasoned Latin students. So, it becomes a process of memorization - every Latin term changes, so remembering how it changes when used in a sentence is key to learning Latin.
Why do Americans use Latin phrases?
It's because each Latin expression has no better sayings in the English language - the phrases contain internal wisdom that cannot be explained in fewer English words. History trivia questions often cite that everyday English can't hope to be more concise than Latin already has.
How to Pick the Best Latin Phrases That Make You Look Cool
Now that you're informed on a few important and famous Latin phrases, you must be wondering how to find your own. So, here are some tips on how to pick your favorite Latin phrase.
1. Choose a subject.
Naturally, you'll want to choose a subject first before picking a Latin phrase to remember. Latin has many sayings and quotes about particular subjects, and many concepts like fortune and fate originate from Latin itself. So, pick a subject to focus on first - there will likely have been plenty of quotes about it.
2. Research thoroughly.
Research famous quotes about your chosen subject using a dictionary or the Internet. Whether you search word by word or by an entire proverb to see if it has any Latin equivalent, the important part is to make sure it has been used before, so you're not using something completely unfamiliar.
3. Pick the right one for the situation.
The last thing you want to do when picking a Latin phrase is to visualize the situation you're going to use it in. Many Latin quotes are used in specific situations and communicated in fewer words than in ordinary English. So, when you see a host of Latin quotes using similar words, pick the right one for the situation you'll use it in.
More Quotes to Explore
This list contains plenty of Latin quotes for you to use whenever conversing. Are you interested in learning more about famous quotes? If so, here are some related posts about quotes that you can use whenever you like.
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- Want to instead read about love quotes for her? Here are some happy valentine's day quotes for you.
Cool Latin phrases can be an interesting note to add to any conversation. If you love Latin and want to surprise your friends with your knowledge of some cool Latin statements, this list is for you.