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semper ubi sub ubi

English translation: [It's an old, old joke...]

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Latin term or phrase:semper ubi sub ubi
English translation:[It's an old, old joke...]
Entered by: Egmont
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00:11 Aug 23, 2000
Latin to English translations [PRO]
Latin term or phrase: semper ubi sub ubi
its in latin.
jarrett
[It's an old, old "macaronic" joke.]
Explanation:
"Semper ubi sub ubi" is meaningless as a Latin sentence, as Happyfarm has pointed out. This is an instance of what is called "macaronic" text, where one language is used in a phonetic or even semantic fashion to create meaningful expressions in a different language. Latin is a favorite target, since so many bored students have been forced to study it over the centuries. So the meaningless Latin phrase that can be rendered only as, "always where under where", actually is meaningful in English, since the pseudo-translation yields a sentence similar to a (silly) English sentence.

Other instances include, "Ubi o ubi est meus sububi," the long verse beginning with "Sidere vili derdago...", and the gut-wrenching rhyme starting with "Caesar adsum jam forte, Pompeius aderat...." You have to pronounce most of these with English values for all the letters, of course, rather than Latin ones. People have even published scholastic articles on such topics in classics journals. You might enjoy researching these!
Selected response from:

Wigtil
Grading comment
Thanks a lot, that was really helpful.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
na +1[It's an old, old "macaronic" joke.]Wigtil
naAlways wear underwear
Laura Gentili
nacould this be a joke - a play on words?Megdalina


  

Answers


34 mins
could this be a joke - a play on words?


Explanation:
Literally it means "always where under where" or " always wear underware,". That's all I've got -may it help!

Megdalina
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51 mins
Always wear underwear


Explanation:
This is the meaning.

Laura Gentili
Italy
Local time: 14:37
Native speaker of: Native in ItalianItalian
PRO pts in pair: 95
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8 hrs peer agreement (net): +1
[It's an old, old "macaronic" joke.]


Explanation:
"Semper ubi sub ubi" is meaningless as a Latin sentence, as Happyfarm has pointed out. This is an instance of what is called "macaronic" text, where one language is used in a phonetic or even semantic fashion to create meaningful expressions in a different language. Latin is a favorite target, since so many bored students have been forced to study it over the centuries. So the meaningless Latin phrase that can be rendered only as, "always where under where", actually is meaningful in English, since the pseudo-translation yields a sentence similar to a (silly) English sentence.

Other instances include, "Ubi o ubi est meus sububi," the long verse beginning with "Sidere vili derdago...", and the gut-wrenching rhyme starting with "Caesar adsum jam forte, Pompeius aderat...." You have to pronounce most of these with English values for all the letters, of course, rather than Latin ones. People have even published scholastic articles on such topics in classics journals. You might enjoy researching these!


Wigtil
PRO pts in pair: 67
Grading comment
Thanks a lot, that was really helpful.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
Adam Bartley

agree  Egmont
761 days
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