know all men by these presents


Spain - Spanish and Catalan
Hi everybody,
I have a doubt about a sentence that seems to appear very often in testaments or last wills. Actually, it's the first sentence: KNOW ALL MEN BY THESE PRESENTS...

How would you translate it into Spanish?, because I think I understand it, but if I had to translate it. I'm not really sure of what "presents" mean in this case.
And one more question: Is this sentence used just for testaments and last wills or is it used for other legal documents too?

By the way, dunno if it can be felt somehow, but I'm studying translation, so iIm just trying to learn as much as possible from you all. :)
Last edited by a moderator:
  • Lara, or someone, with more knowledge than I have will probably give a definitive answer. But, meanwhile the results of my websearching:

    I would think it should be ''by these present'' (quizá: ''por las personas que estan presente'' ?) , but I see in one dictionary the following:

    " Know all men by these presents" that is, by the writing itself, " per has literas praesentes; " -- in this sense, rarely used in the singular.

    This is clearly just one of a variety of standard openings for a legal will or testament or other legal document.

    Probably if you just look at the opening of any will or testament in Spanish, you will find an equivalent expression. Apparently the phrase

    "Know all men by these presents, that we"

    is interchangeable with any of the following openings of official court documents.

    "Be it known that, ...".

    ."Be it know to all unto whom these present letters may come, that We, ...".

    ."Due commendations and greetings from ...".

    "Know ye, that, ...".

    "Know all by these presents, that We, ...".

    "Let all gentles and nobles know by these presents, ...".

    "Let All know that We, ...".

    "Proclaim to all gentles and nobles, that, ...".

    "To all and singular unto whom these presents shall come, ...".

    "Unto all to whom these present letters may come, greeting! Know that We, ...".

    "We, ...".

    "In witness whereof We have hereunto set Our Hands and Seal, this (Insert day) day of (Insert Month), Anno Societatis (Insert the year of the SCA), being the year (Insert Modern Year) of the Common Era."
    Last edited by a moderator:
    Repasando este hilo me doy cuenta de que nadie tradujo al final nada.
    La traducción equivalente sería: A todos los que la presente vieran y entendieran.
    La literal sería Conozcan todos por estos documentos
    La "fórmula" Know all men by these presentes también se usa para otros documentos.
    Es muy común en los diplomas universitarios, certificados de galardón, etc.
    Literalmente, quiere decir "Sepan todos los Hombres por [Medio de] los [Escritos] Presentes," y otros foreros le han sugerido una variedad de equivalentes adecuados.

    En español se dice "el presente" (documento) o "la presente" (carta), pero en inglés son usos un poco arcáicos para la correspondencia normal. Se reserva generalmente "these presents" a la redacción de los documentos formulaicos, como testamentos, diplomas, etc. Otra común es "Witnesseth," una sola palabra introductoria, que se apoxima a la palabra que Silvia sugiere, "conste...", solo que está en el indicativo, "consta..." "Conste" sería Let it be Known, Be it Known, or Know all Men... Muchos testamentos comienzan con las palabras "By the Grace of God. Amen. Yo Fulano, being of sound mind and body..." pero en esta epoca menos religiosa, se ve menos...
    Last edited by a moderator: