The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Anyone speak Latin?

Tananarive is finishing up her new book, and has a question about Latin that I thought you guys might be able to facilitate:

"I have a passage in my book in which my character comes across a phrase in Latin I want to read: "The Order of Holy Blood." I've used a couple of online translation sites, and it always comes back as "Ordo of Sanctus Cruor." My copyeditor says "of" is not a Latin what gives? What would be the correct way to phrase it?"

Thoughts? Thanks!


Dan Moran said...

Just drop the "of." The Order of Saint Benedict is Ordo Sancti Benedicti; the Order of Friars Minor is Ordo Fratrum Minorum, the Dominicans are Ordo Fratrum Praedicatorum --

I had 2 years of Latin 30 years back; I've lost nearly all of it. But I was a Catholic once.

Anonymous said...

It's: "ordo sancti sanguinis".

Ordo: order (noun, masculine gender, nominative case)

sancti: holy (adjective, masculine gender, singular genitive case)

sanguinis: blood (noun, masculine gender, singular genitive case)

No "of", because Latin was an inflected language; the "of" is implicit in the suffix of "sangu-inis".

(Heh ... haven't used that stuff since Jesuit high school!)

--Erich Schwarz

Anonymous said...

Sentence or term modifications such as "of" and "the" are not necessary in Latin. They're just used for proper English readings and interpretations only.

Marco said...

Dear Steve
Yes, "Ordo Sancti Sanguinis" is o.k.
cruor is "coagulated blood"...

Marco Antônio Bomfoco

Anonymous said...

could say "de" i fyou wanted for "of"

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