Family is my Strength

Discussion in 'Lingua Latina (Latin)' started by alfie55555, Sep 6, 2007.

  1. alfie55555 New Member

    Hi guys,

    its my first post so here goes!

    I'd love to know what

    'Strength is my Family'
    'Family is my Strength'

    would translate to in Latin. Much love and appreciation for any help!

    Alf x
  2. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    New York
    USA - English
    "Family is my strength" would be Familia fortis meus. It might be compared to the opening verse of Psalm 143/144, which in English is "Blessed be the Lord my strength", but in Latin is benedictus Dominus fortis meus.

    I am not sure what "strength is my family" means in English, let alone how to translate it into Latin.
  3. modus.irrealis Senior Member

    English, Canada
    It's odd though that the Latin there has fortis, which is after all an adjective. I would have expected something like fortitudo mea, which also occurs in the Bible.
  4. alfie55555 New Member

    thanks guys :)
  5. alfie55555 New Member

    A bit more research led me to

    'familia est meus fortitudo' translated to 'family is my strength'

    In this instance would 'est' be needed, taking into account that 'fortitudo' is not an adjective?????

    Correct me if I am wrong but I believe the correct latin to be :

    'familia meus fortitudo' - 'family is my strength'

    Would greatly appreciate your suggestions guys, struggling student in need!!! x
  6. modus.irrealis Senior Member

    English, Canada
    The est is optional, and it does sound better to me without it in this sort of phrase. With fortitudo, however, because it's feminine, you have to use mea instead of meus. And mea generally follows its noun, as in GreenWhiteBlue's sentence -- if you put it in the middle, with both nouns being feminine, it becomes somewhat ambiguous which noun the mea goes with.
  7. alfie55555 New Member

    Thanks modus.irrealis,

    So in your opinion the correct translation is 'familia fortitudo mea', that sounds to me the best conclusion too.

    Is there a masculine alternative to 'fortitudo' so that 'meus' will follow the noun? The main reason I am asking is that I am writing a small performance sketch in Latin with the main character, in this instance a male, quoting 'family is my strength' at the end scene.

    I just really need to make sure this line is accurate as it ties the whole performance together.

    Many thanks for all your help.
  8. clara mente Senior Member

    USA English
    I think Modus' rendition is the best choice here, and unfortunately, the other alternatives which come to mind are also feminine, i.e. "vis" and "potentia".
  9. modus.irrealis Senior Member

    English, Canada
    About fortis meus, I just realized that this is literally "my strong one" which makes sense -- I wonder if it reflects something in the original Hebrew.

    Yes, I meant familia fortitudo mea is what I'd go with. And there's no disconnect between it being a male speaker and using mea, so that shouldn't be a problem.
  10. alfie55555 New Member

    thanks modus.irrealis,

    i greatly appreciate your help!!!

    i will let you know how the performance goes!!!

    alf x
  11. Pfeast14 New Member

    Hello all. I need some help. I was wondering would changing this phrase from strength is my family to my strength in my family simply require a mea at the beginning? Thanks for any help
  12. Cagey post mod

    English - US
    Hello Pfeast14.

    I don't think a change in word order is going to accomplish what you want it to. However, we can help you better if you explain more fully what you it is want to say, using other words. :)
  13. Scholiast

    Scholiast Senior Member


    These can, neither of them, be correct, as both familia and fortitudo are feminine.

    Rhetorically, both

    fortitudo mea familia


    familia mea fortitudo

  14. Franchino New Member

    French France
    "Familia fortitudo mea" is right too?(grammatically)
  15. jrundin Senior Member

    USA, English
    "Familia" may not be the word you want here. It does not mean "family" as we thing of it.
    "Familia" means household. Eytmologically, it means a bunch of slaves (from famulus).
    You may be saying something closer to "My strength is a bunch of slaves." In fact, because
    the social and economic conditions were different, Latin doesn't really have a direct equivalent
    for family. I would suggest substituting some word like "propinqui" ("relatives") for family.

    I think it generally would be good to rephrase. Latin does not use abstract nouns as
    freely as English. It tends to more concrete expression, tending to use verbal elements to convey
    what we do with abstracts. I would go for something like "I am strong because of my relatives"
    or "my relatives support me."
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2015
  16. jrundin Senior Member

    USA, English
    How about this:

    me corroborat meum genus = My family (birth) strengthens me.


    meo genere valeo = I am strong from my family.
  17. Franchino New Member

    French France
    thanks you for your respond

    "Propinqui fortitudo mea" is good ?

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