You are here:

Latin/Help needed

Advertisement


Question
I wonder if you would care to comment on my attempted translation. It's a request from my younger brother that I (presumptuously) accepted. Here's what I came up with:

Somni dummodo ne dormeas.  -or-
Noli dormire nisi somniorum causa

The intended meaning is: "Dream, but don't Sleep"
Thank you very much.

Answer
Hello,

“Somnia, at noli dormire"  is the correct translation for “Dream, but don't Sleep”, if this imperatives are addressed to only one person such as “Rêve, mais ne dort pas” in French.

Otherwise, you must say: “Somniate, at nolite dormire”, if the imperatives  “Dream, but don't Sleep” are addressed to many  persons  such as “Rêvez, mais ne dormez pas” in French.
[Read more below].

As for your translations “Somni dummodo ne dormeas” and “Noli dormire nisi somniorum causa“, I am sorry, but they both are wrong.

Best regards,
Maria
____________________________________________________________________________

Note that:

-Dream = SOMNIA (2nd.person singular, imperative of SOMNIO, I dream) or SOMNIATE (2nd.person plural, imperative of SOMNIO)

-but = AT (conjunction introducing a direct opposition)

-don't =NOLI (2nd.person singular, imperative of  NOLO, I do not wish/want) or  NOLITE (2nd.person plural, imperative of NOLO).
Note that the  imperatives  NOLI and NOLITE with the infinitive are used to express the English  imperative “Do not..”

-Sleep =DORMIRE (infinitive of DORMIO, I sleep)

Latin

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Maria

Expertise

I am an expert in Latin Language and Literature and I'll be glad to answer any questions concerning this matter.

Experience

Over 25 years teaching experience.

Education/Credentials
I received my Ph.D. in Classics (summa cum laude) from Genova University (Italy).

This expert accepts donations:

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.