Tutorial Transcript

LUCREZIA: Hi everyone and welcome back to my channel! So, as you see today there is a guest with me, Luca came back to visit us. LUCA: Hi everyone, hello Lucrezia! LUCREZIA: Hi, how are you? LUCA: all right, thank you. I'm a little tired, a little tired, but I try to keep my spirits high. LUCREZIA: Well, Luca and I will tell you about some Latin idiomatic expressions, which, however, are really widely used in everyday Italian and we will try, in fact, to explain these expressions, but also to give some information on the context of use of these idioms. So let's get started right away. Do you want to start somewhere? LUCA: from the one you use the most, the one we use the most. So, the one I use most probably is "verba volant", because I'm a little obsessed with always writing down memories, information, because if I don't write, I tend to forget those things. So, the complete sentence would be "verba volant, scripta manent", which literally means "the words fly, the written things remain". But let's say that since it is a phrase widely used in Italian, I also use only the first part. Usually I say: "Wait, let me write it down, because verba volant". Because you know what the second part of the sentence is. LUCREZIA: the one I use the most is certainly, among all those we have written, "de gustibus non disputandum est". And of course I don't use all the saying every time, but I only use the first part "de gustibus". It literally means "tastes are not discussed", but let's say that this phrase, from my point of view, this saying in spoken Italian is used to - how to say - criticize these tastes a bit, right? So actually the phrase means "tastes are not discussed", however we use this phrase to criticize someone's tastes. And so this use seems amusing to me. For example, a friend of mine buys a pair of shoes that I don't like at all, so I say "I don't like them, but if you like them it's okay", right? And then in this case I would use the phrase "de gustibus". LUCA: Yes, it's very funny. LUCREZIA: but the fact is that I am not saying "I don't discuss your tastes", I am criticizing them using this phrase. In fact "de gustibus" is always accompanied by "mah, de gustibus". LUCA: it's a bit sarcastic, I would say. This is very interesting, because instead the original Latin phrase is a proverb, it is a maxim of wisdom, but we don't apply it because we use it sarcasticly. LUCREZIA: Exactly, so, I don't know, it makes me laugh a little. LUCA: So another phrase that I often use, especially when I teach in a class, is "repetita iuvant". I guess you too use it often enough with your students? LUCREZIA: No. Actually, no. No. LUCA: No! Maybe we'll cut this part! Yes, because often, since obviously in Italian, as in all languages, it is important to repeat what has been learned, I often repeat this phrase to my students, which literally means "repeating things help". LUCREZIA: it's true, it's very true. LUCA: especially for languages, therefore vocabulary, therefore the vocabulary, the rules, it is very important to repeat both mentally, but also by writing, all the rules that are learned. LUCREZIA: the conjugations of the verbs. And now, always talking about school, the next expression that comes to my mind is "tu quoque". I was scalded at school by this expression, because I was told this by the Italian teacher in high school at a low point in my school career, because basically - So, briefly the context: during high school I have always been a good student. And it happened one day that our Italian teacher forced us in some way to read a book that was unreadable. It was heaviness in a book, so much so that now I don't even remember what book it was, but I only remember that it was really boring. And nobody in the class had read that book, but we all had to write a review of this blessed book. What did we all do, 25 people? We went online to read what this book was about, didn't we? And therefore more or less everyone in the class had written the same review, because the information we found on the internet was the same. I also did and the Italian teacher, shocked by this, she never saw it coming from me, to copy the review of this book too, so in front of everyone she started saying "Oddone, tu quoque!" And so this is my anecdote about this sentence. LUCA: Let's remind that "tu quoque", maybe abroad it is used less, I don't know, I would be curious to hear from those who are watching if this phrase is also common abroad, because according to legend it is the phrase that Julius Caesar addressed to his adopted son Brutus when he was the last to stab him in the Senate, therefore "you too!". LUCREZIA: You too betray me. LUCA: exactly, so you too Lucrezia betrayed your teacher. One time. LUCREZIA: once, I said it, it was a low moment in my school career, but when I think about it now it makes me laugh, right? Because it's one of those slightly funny anecdotes. LUCA: So, I really like "lupus in fabula", which is used in Italian when talking about a person without being present and suddenly this person appears and therefore usually says "Ah there they are, lupus in fabula!". So we were just looking for you, we were just talking about you. And I really like this Latin proverb because it testifies to its ancient origin, in a peasant society where the wolf was frightening and it was believed that when the wolf was named, he could come. There was fear, it was like a taboo to name the wolf, because it was equivalent to getting him. And it is very interesting that we also have a consideration in Italian for this proverb, which is "speak of the devil and horns come out", therefore it is interesting that in Italian and in a strongly religious and Catholic society, the danger was seen as the devil. Exactly equivalent of the wolf, the evil, the danger. LUCREZIA: And now we can say that these two ways of saying coexist. LUCA: They often hear each other. And you Lucrezia, do you have another proverb that you use, I don't know, playful too? LUCREZIA: I am reminded of "in vino veritas", I think this expression is also known abroad, in fact it means "in wine there is truth", when one drinks wine he becomes sincere, honest, he tells the truth. Basically one is more vulnerable from this point of view, when drinking wine. Of course it also depends on how much wine you drink! It's a nice phrase that recurs jokingly when someone says something unexpected about something or someone, isn't it? Exactly, perhaps on the occasion of a drink with friends and on the occasion of an aperitif. LUCA: it is a secret that one would not confess in another context, but with a little alcohol, it comes out. LUCREZIA: Very well, let's move on. LUCA: Well, one that I really like is the phrase "ubi maior minor cessat". And this too is in my opinion quite common in Italian and literally means when there is a person who is worth more, the person who is worth less must step aside and let the person who is worth more act. And this is always a maxim, a pearl of wisdom that we received from the Latins and also in this case, since the proverb is long, but it is very well known, only the first part is often said and therefore it is said "ubi maior". But it is very interesting, because, even in this case, often this phrase is used in a sarcastic way, in an ironic way. For example in a conversation, if a friend of mine says, "Look, this guy told me this," a person of whom I do not have a high regard, I will probably say: "Ah, then, ubi maior!". Ubi maior! It means: "Ah, then if he said he is superior to us we must believe him!", But in reality he is sarcastic and suggests that I don't have a good view of that person's opinion. LUCREZIA: So, let's get to the penultimate sentence we have here, which is "errare humanum est", which literally means "to make mistakes is human". And this sentence, which of course is only half of the entire sentence - which after Luca will tell us - this first part is used when someone has made a mistake and therefore either wants to justify himself, saying: "ah, ma errare humanum est", therefore to self-justify, or when someone wants to justify someone else's action. But instead the whole sentence is used in another way, right? LUCA: yes, because the second part is "persevering autem diabolicum", which literally means "if you make the same mistake it is diabolical". If one uses the whole sentence, it can also be used in the context in which a person has wronged me, I am patient because we can all make mistakes, making mistakes is human, however if you make a mistake twice, if you make the same mistake twice, then it is more serious, it is less acceptable. LUCREZIA: exactly, so it's interesting to see how this expression actually has two contexts of use, isn't it? Which are quite different. And somehow the speaker adapts the phrase to his ends, if we want, right? The last sentence, the last saying on our list is "carpe diem", which is self-explanatory, isn't it? Because this expression is well known. LUCA: is a quote from a poem by Horace, an important Latin poet, as a warning, as a suggestion, he says to grab the moment. Sometimes if you are undecided, if you are in doubt as to whether to do one thing, you can say to yourself "carpe diem", or take this opportunity because you will not have another. In fact in Italian there is also a fee, it says "every left is lost", therefore every occasion that you don't take, it is said that you will get it back in the future and therefore it is good that you take that moment. LUCREZIA: it's true, I hadn't thought of that. So, we've come to the end of our list. LUCA: and maybe write in the comments if these sentences are the most used also in your languages โ€‹โ€‹or there are others. LUCREZIA: So Luca, I thank you for lending yourself to this game today. And I hope you enjoyed it too. LUCA: I hope we can meet again in person soon, not just in front of a screen. LUCREZIA: true, true, all hopes that we share. And nothing then I greet everyone, thank everyone and see you in the next video. See you soon bye!