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Imitari quam invidere

English translation: to imitate rather than to envy

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Latin term or phrase:Imitari quam invidere
English translation:to imitate rather than to envy
Entered by: Branka Arrivé
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15:23 Jan 2, 2002
Latin to English translations [PRO]
Latin term or phrase: Imitari quam invidere
the latin motto appears on my coat of arms
ray chiles
to imitate rather than to envy
Explanation:
It comes from Sallust's "Bellum Catilinae", 51: "Maiores nostri, patres conscripti, neque consili neque audaciae umquam eguere, neque illis superbia obstabat, quo minus aliena instituta, si modo proba erant, imitarentur. Arma atque tela militaria ab Samnitibus, insignia magistratuum ab Tuscis pleraque sumpserunt; postremo quod ubique apud socios aut hostis idoneum videbatur, cum summo studio domi exsequebantur: imitari quam invidere bonis malebant".
Translation: (see ref. below)Alfred W. Pollard, MacMillan & Co.: London, 1882.

"Senators, our ancestors never showed themselves wanting in either wisdom or courage, nor did they allow their pride to prevent them imitating the customs of foreign nations, so long as they were good. Most of their armor and weapons of warfare they adopted from the Samnites, and the emblems of their magistracies from the Etruscans; in fine, they zealously copied in their own administration all that seemed serviceable among their allies or enemies. They preferred, I may say, to imitate rather than to envy the good".
Selected response from:

Branka Arrivé
Local time: 17:12
Grading comment
thanking you very much for your promt reply to my request for a translation of the latin term "Imitari quam invidere".
it was very helpful & informative.
once again thanking you & wishing you a happy new year.
ray chiles
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
5 +2to imitate rather than to envyBranka Arrivé
5 +1Better to emulate than envy
flaviofbg
5imitation is the sincerest form of flatteryNigel Patterson


  

Answers


20 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +1
Better to emulate than envy


Explanation:
Dear Ray,

this is a fragment from Sallustius' "De Coniuratione Catilinae" (51).

Talking about a country, he says "they preferred to imitate rather than envy the good institution of other countries"

"imitari quam invidere" then refers to the fact that one prefers to imitate something that someone else is doing good rather than stay there, look and envy him. It's a positive, active meaning. Something like "go get it yourself, don't stay there just looking".

Hope it helped!

Flavio




    Disctinction in Latin
flaviofbg
Spain
Local time: 17:12
Native speaker of: Native in ItalianItalian, Native in SpanishSpanish
PRO pts in pair: 155

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Nigel Patterson: see below
3 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

31 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +2
to imitate rather than to envy


Explanation:
It comes from Sallust's "Bellum Catilinae", 51: "Maiores nostri, patres conscripti, neque consili neque audaciae umquam eguere, neque illis superbia obstabat, quo minus aliena instituta, si modo proba erant, imitarentur. Arma atque tela militaria ab Samnitibus, insignia magistratuum ab Tuscis pleraque sumpserunt; postremo quod ubique apud socios aut hostis idoneum videbatur, cum summo studio domi exsequebantur: imitari quam invidere bonis malebant".
Translation: (see ref. below)Alfred W. Pollard, MacMillan & Co.: London, 1882.

"Senators, our ancestors never showed themselves wanting in either wisdom or courage, nor did they allow their pride to prevent them imitating the customs of foreign nations, so long as they were good. Most of their armor and weapons of warfare they adopted from the Samnites, and the emblems of their magistracies from the Etruscans; in fine, they zealously copied in their own administration all that seemed serviceable among their allies or enemies. They preferred, I may say, to imitate rather than to envy the good".



    Reference: http://www.ancientlanguages.org/claslattexts/sallust/bellumc...
Branka Arrivé
Local time: 17:12
PRO pts in pair: 12
Grading comment
thanking you very much for your promt reply to my request for a translation of the latin term "Imitari quam invidere".
it was very helpful & informative.
once again thanking you & wishing you a happy new year.
ray chiles

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Nigel Patterson: see below
3 hrs

agree  Egmont
317 days
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

3 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
imitation is the sincerest form of flattery


Explanation:
Please note: if a strictly accurate translation is what you need, the two previous answers are spot on. If, however, you require a colloquial approximation in modern English, the maxim above may suit your purpose - but it's not a better technical translation!

Nigel Patterson
United States
Local time: 10:12
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 4
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




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