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LATIN language update

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


moonbi Report 18 Nov 2012 00:27

I think I might be able to translate that will myself, after all.


Kense Report 18 Nov 2012 09:44

That's good news moonbi. We know where to come for our Latin translations now.


RolloTheRed Report 18 Nov 2012 16:05

Dog latin as used in C16. C17. C18 legal documents does not have much to do with classic Latin as once taught in schools, "Greats" at uni. or even and especially the Roman Catholic church. Apart from the wacky writing - which is not too bad once you allow for the effects of using a quill pen - it is full of abbreviations and clauses which basic Latin will not help you with at all.

I have translated several such documents for people. Most of the time they are not Latin at all but English (!) with old French being a popular runner up. The rest were indeed in Latin but very seldom after 1670.

The photo copies of such documents issued by R.Os tend to be dreadful - translation from the original is much easier. Usually the R.O will allow you to take a digital picture in color and these are far easier to work from.

More than one of my ancestors was a barrister at Grays Inn as long ago as the C17. If anybody wants help with such documents feel free.

nonne amicus certus in re incerta cernitur


wisechild Report 19 Nov 2012 07:30

I would agree Rollo.
From what I can remember of translating old wills as part of my Family History cert, there are usually a couple of stock phrases in Latin at the beginning & end of the document & the rest is in almost unintelligible English.
The stock phrase at the beginning usually refers to the date, shown as the year of the reign of the monarch of the time, & the fact that the person is of sound mind.
CanĀ“t remember what the end phrase is.


moonbi Report 21 Nov 2012 06:14

Hi there, thanks for your replies.

yes indeed most of the wills I obtained were in old English script.
but the one in latin is from 1598; it is a digital copy which was put onto a cd for me from the NRO

The tutorials I am doing now are specifically for the translation of legal documents, and the example sentences are from that type of document.

Thats good Rollo, I agree in the main.