Government

Latin translation: res publica/imperium/regnum/dictio/phrase

GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
English term or phrase:Government
Latin translation:res publica/imperium/regnum/dictio/phrase
Entered by: Joseph Brazauskas

18:58 Dec 4, 2008
English to Latin translations [Non-PRO]
Law/Patents - Government / Politics
English term or phrase: Government
I believe that the word "Government" comes from Latin. What are they and what is their literual tranlation back to the English? Sounds silly however I have been listening some conspiracy theories which sound outlandish one of which defined the word "Government" using latin translation.
Rob Perring
res publica/imperium/regnum/dictio/phrase
Explanation:
The English word government can be taken in at least four common sesnes:

[1] The phrase 'res publica' carries most connotations of English 'government, state'. It's moist literal translation would be 'commonwealth'.

[2] 'Imperium' means political or military power entrusted to an official magistrate under the Republic, whether civil or military, but under the Empire came to refer chief to the supreme power wielded by the Emperor.

[3] 'Regnum' means literally 'kingdom'.

[4] 'Dictio' is a more restricted term and refers to the plotical, usually judicial, powers of specific persons.

[1] In a a concrete sense, as the persons and groups of persons who run the government; to render this, one must use the title of a specific official or officials (e.g., 'consul', 'praetor', 'senator') or, if referring to government personnel collectively, one may use (in specific cases) the plural of the titles of the above magistrates or more simply a descriptive relative clause (e.g, 'qui rei publicae presunt' = '(those) who are in chage of the state' or 'qui imperium habent' = '(he) who holds power').


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Note added at 17 hrs (2008-12-05 12:27:59 GMT) Post-grading
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The English word 'government' derives ultimately from the Greek verb 'kybernân', 'to steer, pilot (a ship)'. Metaphorically this came to mean 'to guide, govern'. The Romans took the word over into Latin, it having become modified in their mouths into 'gubernare' but retaining the same meanings. In very late and Mediaeval Latin, the instrumental suffix '-mentum' was added to the root 'guberna-' to form 'gubernamentum', and this, via its Old French form 'governement', was taken into Middle English, surviving in common use to this day.

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Note added at 5 days (2008-12-09 23:32:50 GMT) Post-grading
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'-mentum' is not a word but a nominal suffix indicating means or instrument. Thus, e.g., 'regimentum' ('rule') consists of the root in 'regere', (to rule, guide) + the suffix '-mentum'. A briefer variant of this suffix is '-men' (cf. 'regimen').
Selected response from:

Joseph Brazauskas
United States
Local time: 21:27
Grading comment
Thank you very much. I didn't wish to influence your answer, however, in one acticle it suggested that if you got to the root of the word "Government" in Latin, as well as Greek in would translate as "Mind Control". Even though the word "Power" is used I get the distinct view that may disagree with the acticle I read. I don't know if you are able to respond to this, but I would be interested in your views. Many thanks again
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
5res publica/imperium/regnum/dictio/phrase
Joseph Brazauskas


  

Answers


1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
government
res publica/imperium/regnum/dictio/phrase


Explanation:
The English word government can be taken in at least four common sesnes:

[1] The phrase 'res publica' carries most connotations of English 'government, state'. It's moist literal translation would be 'commonwealth'.

[2] 'Imperium' means political or military power entrusted to an official magistrate under the Republic, whether civil or military, but under the Empire came to refer chief to the supreme power wielded by the Emperor.

[3] 'Regnum' means literally 'kingdom'.

[4] 'Dictio' is a more restricted term and refers to the plotical, usually judicial, powers of specific persons.

[1] In a a concrete sense, as the persons and groups of persons who run the government; to render this, one must use the title of a specific official or officials (e.g., 'consul', 'praetor', 'senator') or, if referring to government personnel collectively, one may use (in specific cases) the plural of the titles of the above magistrates or more simply a descriptive relative clause (e.g, 'qui rei publicae presunt' = '(those) who are in chage of the state' or 'qui imperium habent' = '(he) who holds power').


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 17 hrs (2008-12-05 12:27:59 GMT) Post-grading
--------------------------------------------------

The English word 'government' derives ultimately from the Greek verb 'kybernân', 'to steer, pilot (a ship)'. Metaphorically this came to mean 'to guide, govern'. The Romans took the word over into Latin, it having become modified in their mouths into 'gubernare' but retaining the same meanings. In very late and Mediaeval Latin, the instrumental suffix '-mentum' was added to the root 'guberna-' to form 'gubernamentum', and this, via its Old French form 'governement', was taken into Middle English, surviving in common use to this day.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 5 days (2008-12-09 23:32:50 GMT) Post-grading
--------------------------------------------------

'-mentum' is not a word but a nominal suffix indicating means or instrument. Thus, e.g., 'regimentum' ('rule') consists of the root in 'regere', (to rule, guide) + the suffix '-mentum'. A briefer variant of this suffix is '-men' (cf. 'regimen').

Joseph Brazauskas
United States
Local time: 21:27
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in SpanishSpanish
Grading comment
Thank you very much. I didn't wish to influence your answer, however, in one acticle it suggested that if you got to the root of the word "Government" in Latin, as well as Greek in would translate as "Mind Control". Even though the word "Power" is used I get the distinct view that may disagree with the acticle I read. I don't know if you are able to respond to this, but I would be interested in your views. Many thanks again
Notes to answerer
Asker: I do like conspiracy theories and the rubbish that is dealt out as facts. Your answers have been most enlightening. Thank you! Just to clear up one point you made; the word "mentum" was added later, you say. What does "mentum" mean? Thank you again for your time.

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