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Quotes of Terence

This post is also available in: Polish (polski)


Terence (Publius Terentius Afer lived in the years 185/4 – 159 BCE. It was a Roman comedy writer.

  • “I know women: when you want, they don’t want; when you don’t want to, then they care a lot”
    • latin: [Censen te posse reperir ullam mulierem, quae careat culpa]
    • description: own translation from Polish.
    • source: Terence, Eunuchus, 812-813
  • “Do you think it’s possible to find a woman without flaws?”
    • latin: [Censen te posse reperir ullam mulierem, quae careat culpa]
    • description: own translation from Polish.
    • source: Terence, Hecyra, 662
  • “Nothing so unjust as an ignorant man, who thinks nothing right but what he himself has done”
    • latin: [Homine imperito numquam quicquam iniustius est, qui, nisi quod ipse fecit, nil rectum putat]
    • source: Terence, Adelphoe, 98-99
  • “How is man unequal to man!”
    • latin: [Homini homo quid praestat!]
    • description: own translation from Polish.
    • source: Terence, Eunuchus, 232
  • “Often you can’t be the person you want to be because circumstances don’t allow it”
    • latin: [Non licet hominem esse saepe ita, ut volt, si res non sinit]
    • description: own translation from Polish.
    • source: Terence, Heauton timorumenos, 666
  • “We are all the worse for license”
    • latin: [Deteriores omnes sumus licentia]
    • source: Terence, Heauton timorumenos, 483
  • “Everyone cares more about their own than others”
    • latin: [Omnis sibi malle melius esse quam alteri]
    • description: own translation from Polish.
    • source: Terence, Andria, 427
  • “Obsequiousness begets friends; sincerity, dislike”
    • latin: [Obsequium amicos, veritas odium parit]
    • source: Terence, Andria, 68
  • “As the disposition of all mankind has a downward tendency from industry toward pleasure”
    • latin: [Ita […] ingenium est omnium, hominum ab labore proclive ad lubidinem]
    • source: Terence, Andria, 77-78
  • “Whatever fortune brings, we will patiently bear”
    • latin: [Quod fors feret, feremus aequo animo]
    • source: Terence, Phormio, 138
  • “Sny man should take it into his head, or find out what is dearer to him than he is to himself!”
    • latin: [Quemquamne hominem in animo instituere aut, parare quod sit carius, quam ipse est sibi!]
    • source: Terence, Adelphoe, 38-39
  • “Nothing is more advantageous to a person than courtesy and compassion (Terence)”
    • latin: [Facilitate nil esse homini melius neque clementia]
    • source: Terence, Adelphoe, 861
  • “All things are common among friends”
    • latin: [Communia esse amicorum inter se omnia]
    • source: Terence, Adelphoe, 804
  • “I am human, I consider nothing human alien to me”
    • latin: [Homo sum; humani nil a me alienum puto]
    • source: Terence, Heauton timorumenos, 77
  • “If two do the same thing, it is not the same”
    • latin: [Si duo faciunt idem, non est idem]
    • source: Terence, The Brothers V, 3, 37
  • “As many men, so as many opinions”
    • latin: [Quot homines tot sententiae: suo’ quoique mos]
    • source: Terence, Phormio 454
  • “I’m Davus, not Oedipus”
    • latin: [Davus sum, non Oedipus]
    • description: words of slave, once he was asked to solve the problem.
    • source: Terence, Andria 1.2
  • “Lovers’ quarrels are the renewal of love”
    • latin: [Amantium irae amoris integratio est]
    • source: Terence, Andria 555
  • “He who is first in time is first in right”
    • latin: [Potior est, qui prior est]
    • source: Terence, Phormio II, 3
  • “Do not do what is done”
    • latin: [Actum ne agas]
    • source: Terence, Phormio II, III, 72
  • “Said and done”
    • latin: [Dictum, factum]
    • source: Terence, Andria 2, 3, 7
  • “(the) strong (ones), Fortune helps”
    • latin: [Fortis fortuna adiuvat]
    • source: Terence, Phormio, I, 4
  • “Strictest law means greatest hardship”
    • latin: [Ius summum saepe summast malitia]
    • source: Terence, Heauton Timorumenos, 796
  • “These days flattery wins friends, truth begets hatred”
    • latin: [Obsequium amicos, veritas odium parit]
    • source: Terence, Andria 68
  • “The wolf in the story”
    • latin: [Lupus in fabula!]
    • source: Terence, Adelphoe
  • “Alas! three whole days to wait!”
    • latin: [Heu! universum triduum!]
    • source: Terence, Eunuchus II, I, 17
  • “Lovers are lunatics”
    • latin: [Amantes amentes]
    • source: Terence, Andria
  • “Of my friends I am the only one left”
  • “I know the nature of women; when you will they won’t, when you won’t they long for it”
    • latin: [Novi ingenium mulierum: nolunt ubi velis, ubi nolis cupiunt ultro]
    • source: Terence, Eunuchus IV
  • “It is with human life as with a game of dice: if the throw you with for happens not to come up, that which does come up by chance, you must correct by art”
    • latin: [Ita uitast hominum, quasi quom ludas tesseris:si illud quod maxume opus est iactu non cadit, illud quod cecidit forte, id arte ut corrigas.]
    • source: Terence, Brothers IV

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