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Latin/English to Latin translation for an inscription

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Question
Hi Maria,

I would love to get an inscription done on an engagement ring. I want to say "Our souls as one" I've done a bit of research but I'm not entirely sure of the grammatical details of latin. So far I have "Animas nostras unum". As a primarily English speaker with no knowledge of noun cases, I'm a bit lost! Someone has suggested to me "Nostrae animae una"

Could you please help? Thanks in advance.

Answer
Hello,

the sentence "Our souls as one" can be correctly translated as follows:

1)“Nos ambo sicut unum” (literally, “We  both as one [thing]”)
2)“Corda sicut unum nostra” (literally, “Our hearts as one [thing]”)
3)“Nostri sicut unum animi ” (literally, “Our souls as one [thing]”).

Since all three of the above translations are correct, you can choose the one you like best.

As for "Animas nostras unum”, please note that  the accusative “animas nostras” is wrong, as it must be in the nominative case, i.e. “animae nostrae” that however is also wrong as the Latin feminine noun ANIMA  means “physical life”, not “soul” as “the seat of feeling, emotion” which translates correctly as ANIMUS (masculine singular noun) or COR (neuter singular noun) whose nominative plural is ANIMI and CORDA respectively.

Lastly, with regard to “Nostrae animae una”, please note that “Nostrae animae” is wrong as it should be “Nostri animi” (see above for ANIMA and ANIMUS)  and “una” is wrong too as it should be “unum” in the neuter singular.

Read more below.

Best regards,

Maria
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PARSING of  “Nos ambo sicut unum” ,  “Corda sicut unum nostra”  and  “Nostri sicut unum animi ”:

-NOS (nominative case,  1st person plural pronoun) = We
-AMBO (nominative) = both
-SICUT (conjunction) = as
-UNUM (nominative neuter singular of the cardinal number UNUS  that in Latin must imply the noun “thing”) = one thing
_______________________________________________________________________________________________

-CORDA  (nominative plural of the neuter noun COR, 3rd declension) = hearts
-SICUT  (conjunction) = as
-UNUM (nominative neuter singular of the cardinal number UNUS  that in Latin must imply the noun “thing”) = one thing
-NOSTRA (nominative neuter plural of the possessive NOSTER agreed with CORDA)= our
______________________________________________________________________________________________

-NOSTRI (nominative masculine  plural of the possessive NOSTER agreed with ANIMI) = our
-SICUT (conjunction) = as
-UNUM  (nominative neuter singular of the cardinal number UNUS  that in Latin must imply the noun “thing”) = one thing
-ANIMI ((nominative plural of the masculine noun  ANIMUS,  2nd declension) = souls

As you can see, Latin word order can be variable simply because Latin is an inflected language where syntactical relationships are indicated by the endings, not by the order of the words.  

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Maria

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

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Over 25 years teaching experience.

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

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