Disputatio:Oratio Gettysburgensis

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Years ago[fontem recensere]

De: "four score and seven = 87 years; not sure what lustra meant)."—A lustrum is a period of five years. Obviously, what I was aiming at was the style of the original, not a literal gloss. My attempt may or may not be best, but your version becomes merely 'Eighty-seven years ago'. ¶ According to Woodcock's New Latin Syntax (#11), the idiom 'X years ago' is abhinc annos X, not X annos abhinc. ¶ I see no need to modify the maiores with nostri. ¶ If you want to go ahead and translate the whole address (as you've done the Constitution), feel free to do so! IacobusAmor 16:22, 3 Augusti 2009 (UTC)

I wasn't aware of that meaning of lustrum. I found muddy puddle and sacrifice as the meanings. But indeed L&S gives 5 or 4 years as the meaning, since that is how often this sacrifice was performed. Seems out of place though. When I placed the abhinc afterwards I was trying to do as you did: trying to mimic the style, but perhaps the beginning is better. I changed maiores to genitores nostri to be closer to the english. --Rafaelgarcia 16:46, 3 Augusti 2009 (UTC)
The only term Cassell's gives for 'forefathers' is maiores. IacobusAmor 16:51, 3 Augusti 2009 (UTC)
Yes, but the speech apparently says "fathers" not forefathers. I myself remember forefathers too.--Rafaelgarcia 16:58, 3 Augusti 2009 (UTC)
Prolly cuz fathers in this context effectively means 'forefathers'. :) IacobusAmor 17:11, 3 Augusti 2009 (UTC)

of,by,for[fontem recensere]

When translating "of the people, by the people, for the people",

(1)"for the people" is obviously "pro populo", no doubt whatever about this; however
(2) "of the people" could alternatively be translated as
(a)"populi" (bare genetive) meaning "belonging to the people" or understood as a redundancy since "goverment of the people" = "a government which rules the people" (in this second sense Aquinas writes in Summa Theologia "regnum est optimum regimen populi" ="the kingdom is the best government of the people"); I don't think the first sense really applies either since I don't think I own any part of the government.
(b)"de populo" meaning "derived from the people", or "concerning the people" and
(c)"a populo" meaning "(away) from the people" or "originating from the people" (used in this sense by Hobbes in De Cive)
(3) "by the people" can be translated
(a)"a populo" which can mean "by the people" but only if we mentally supply "recta" (ruled by) or some other appropriate passive verb or participle; or
(b)"per populum" which means "through the people" or "by the people" in the sense of "a populo recta",
(c)"iuxta populum" which means "hard by the people" or "next to the people".

What makes it confusing is that the english phrase is ambigous but also because the ambiguities in the english "of" and "by" don't match with the ambiguities in the latin "ab" and "de".

My interpretation of "a government of the people, by the people, for the people" = "a government (2b)derived from the people, (3b)run by the people, (1)on the people's behalf" = "de populo, per populum, pro populo"; but I could see other's disagreeing with me on that...

Any thoughts?--Rafaelgarcia 05:20, 4 Augusti 2009 (UTC)

The obvious temptation is to try to match the parallelism of the original; in which case, de, per, pro might be my first thought too. Getting rid of the prepositions altogether (and thus the parallelism) might give us popularis populi gubernatio populo, but wouldn't that sound silly? Surely pupils have been setting this text for more than a century, so Latin versions must exist somewhere. IacobusAmor 12:06, 4 Augusti 2009 (UTC)

Hold up![fontem recensere]

Let's not make up versions of well-known texts if we have to, eh? :p

The Oratio Gettysburgensis was translated into Latin by James Aloysius Kleist in 1912. (A couple of versions of his translation apparently out of a textbook he wrote are linked from Abrahamus Lincoln; the version that was published in the Classical Journal is available on google books.) At any rate, 'four score and seven years ago' are the words now insignes, not 'abhinc octoginta et septem annos' nor any other Latin translation of them... —Mucius Tever 19:37, 4 Augusti 2009 (UTC)

Sorry. I moved my translation off the page. Feel free to fix.--Rafaelgarcia 20:24, 4 Augusti 2009 (UTC)