February 15, 2011

Amat victoria curam

Recording also available at iPadio using this link.

Today's saying is Amat victoria curam. In English: "Victory loves carefulness."

This is one of those brief Latin sayings that sounds great in Latin but doesn't sound quite right in English no matter what you do with it. The idea is simple: if you want to emerge victorious, you need to be careful in everything you do. Victory, personified, will love you if you are diligent in your preparations for the contest, whatever that contest may be. Unfortunately, in today's fast-paced, multitasking society, there is not a lot of emphasis on being careful and painstaking in your work. One of the biggest tasks I face with my students is getting them to slow down so that they can really pay attention to what they are doing, being careful and diligent so that they will emerge as winners in the learning game: "Victory loves carefulness," Amat victoria curam.

In terms of Latin, this word cura is a two-edged sword. In its positive sense, it has the meaning of taking care, showing concern, being diligent, etc.. In a more negative sense, however, it suggests trouble, worry, anxiety, etc. So, each time you encounter this Latin word, you need to look at the context to see just what meaning is required!

For those of you who are fans of macrons, here is the Latin written with macrons:

Amat victōria cūram.



Anonymous said...

Thank you Laura...just found your post as I was searching for this Latin Quote. Very cool blog!


Laura Gibbs said...

I am glad you liked it! I hope to come back to this blog over the summer. During the school year, I really struggle for time - I teach English Comp., not Latin... but I spend pretty much all summer doing fun Latin stuff, proverbs, fables, etc. It's an endless supply of food for the brain! :-)

Anonymous said...

Hey Laura, great work on explaining the idea behind the proverb! But in my opinion you should :) prepare more... I understand it was always hard for English speaker to pronounce Latin (listening to catolic priests makes me want to commit suiside), but pronouncing "victory" with "w" is completely new standard. I'm sure with more preparation you could have decent pronounciation of Latin, your "r" was surprisingly good. Keep up the good work!!!
Absit inuiria verbis.

Laura Gibbs said...

Prepare more...? Hmmm, I tend to think that people who obsess about the pronunciation of a dead language probably have better things to do. I know I do! :-) Amat sanitas medium.

Anonymous said...

hollywood blockbuster "the mechanic" has a scene with a hand gun in which is ingraved "amat victoria curam" on one side,and "victory loves preparations" on the other.Can this be a valid translation of this saying?

Laura Gibbs said...

Yes indeed it can - and thanks for the tip about finding the Latin quote in that movie! It would be fun if someone did a big book of all the places where Latin shows up in movies! :-)

Anonymous said...

Thank you - what a great blog! I found you Googling for the meaning of "amat victoria curam" - and I've bookmarked you and will surely visit again.

Anonymous said...

Hey, mega enjoyed the thread. Keep going with the Latin - I'll totally come back and read more.

Question though: "Amat sanitas medium"

What does this mean? I have never seen it before.

"Reason loves the ordinary?"

Would it translate as "simple minds..." ?

You should totally make a list of Latin put-downs and insults. And another one of compliments. (but do the insults list first :)

adde parvum parvo magnus acervus erit

(keep going!!)

Laura Gibbs said...

Amat sanitas medium: Sanity loves the middle ground (in other words, it is healthy to stick to the middle and not go to extremes!)

And it's almost 10 years old now, but I have a handout about Latin insults here :-)

Patrick said...

Thanks for the tip about finding the Latin quote in that movie! Very cool blog!

Laura Gibbs said...

Someone just sent me a REALLY cool image of Amat Victoria Curam; I posted it at Google+.

Anonymous said...

Many years later but still worth posting.

In the state of Victoria in Australia there is an Australian Rules Football Club playing in The AFL (Australian Football League) called North Melbourne Football Club.

>The club's motto is Victoria amat curam, Latin for "Victory Demands Dedication".<

That's a quote from the club website. The page is - nmfc dot com dot au/club/history - just replace the dots and make it a proper url.

That may not be technically true but its none the less a great translation of the spirit of the phrase. Its confrontational and demands you examine your effort when you lose.

Anyway cheers.