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nil illegitimo carburimdum(?)/carbunmdum

English translation: Don´t let the bastards get you down

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Latin term or phrase:nil illegitimo carburimdum(?)/carbunmdum
English translation:Don´t let the bastards get you down
Entered by: Chris Rowson
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11:23 Mar 15, 2002
Latin to English translations [Non-PRO]
Tech/Engineering
Latin term or phrase: nil illegitimo carburimdum(?)/carbunmdum
A comment accompanying a letter from an aeronautical engineer
Dave Dale
Don´t let the bastards get you down
Explanation:
The correct form is "Illegitimis non carborundum".

The joke is that carborundum looks like a good Latin gerundive, reminiscent of real quotes from ancient Romans, in which case it would be beautiully idiomatic.

But it is actually the 20th C English name of a mineral and not Latin at all. The word "illegitimus" is also doubtful as classical Latin.

The phrase was invented by some English classical scholar during the 2nd WW. Nice sense of humour.

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Note added at 2002-03-15 13:14:38 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

I note the aeronautical engineer knows something about Latin: behind the distortions of copying, it is still perceptible that he has correctly singularised the original form \"illegitimis\" to \"illegitimo\". So the translation should, in this case read \"Don´t let the bastard get you down\", only one bastard, presumably specific.
Unless you like John´s \"grind\", when correspondingly.
Selected response from:

Chris Rowson
Local time: 06:46
Grading comment
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
5 +1Don't let the bastards get you down!
Sven Petersson
5Don't let the bastards grind you downJohn Kinory
4 +1Don´t let the bastards get you downChris Rowson


  

Answers


5 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +1
Don't let the bastards get you down!


Explanation:
Implicit in answer.


    My geriatric brain.
Sven Petersson
Sweden
Local time: 06:46
Native speaker of: Native in SwedishSwedish, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 18

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  flaviofbg: And by the way, it is "fake" Latin
0 min
  -> Yes indeed!

neutral  John Kinory: See below re carborundum
1 hr
  -> Agree!
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

11 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
Don´t let the bastards get you down


Explanation:
The correct form is "Illegitimis non carborundum".

The joke is that carborundum looks like a good Latin gerundive, reminiscent of real quotes from ancient Romans, in which case it would be beautiully idiomatic.

But it is actually the 20th C English name of a mineral and not Latin at all. The word "illegitimus" is also doubtful as classical Latin.

The phrase was invented by some English classical scholar during the 2nd WW. Nice sense of humour.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2002-03-15 13:14:38 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

I note the aeronautical engineer knows something about Latin: behind the distortions of copying, it is still perceptible that he has correctly singularised the original form \"illegitimis\" to \"illegitimo\". So the translation should, in this case read \"Don´t let the bastard get you down\", only one bastard, presumably specific.
Unless you like John´s \"grind\", when correspondingly.

Chris Rowson
Local time: 06:46
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 49

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  John Kinory: See below re carborundum
59 mins

agree  Kemal Mustajbegovic: Yes, yes, yes ... and we have this ...hm..."one"... on a board at least once a fourthnight.
1 hr
  -> Yes, I´ve seen it oince already, and I´ve not been here two weeks yet.
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
Don't let the bastards grind you down


Explanation:
nil = don't
illegitimo = bastards
carborundum = abrasive mineral

Yes, fake Latin :-)

The joke is that carborundum is an abrasive substance, used in engineering; hence the 'grind' bit.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2002-03-15 15:19:34 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Chris is right:
Don\'t let the bastard (Head of Production, Head of Accounts, VP S&M ... [G]) grind you down.

John Kinory
Local time: 05:46
PRO pts in pair: 7
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