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Abbreviations

Postby benissimus » Sat Oct 11, 2003 12:44 am

I'm looking at a painting of the triumphs held after Julius Caesar's victories, and some people are carrying banners. I know the "SPQR" stand for "Senatus populusque Romanus," but does anyone know what the other letters stand for? The Romans are a little overly fond of abbreviation I think... This is roughly what they look like:

Banner 1
SPQR IVLIVS CAESAR P-M-

Banner 2
SPQR DIVO IVLIO CÆSARI D-P-P-P-


Oh yeah, and what does SPQR have to do with Julius Caesar? He nullified the Senate practically as soon as he came into power.
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Re: Abbreviations

Postby Magistra » Sat Oct 11, 2003 2:37 am

[quote="benissimus"

Banner 1
SPQR IVLIVS CAESAR P-M-

Banner 2
SPQR DIVO IVLIO CÆSARI D-P-P-P-


Oh yeah, and what does SPQR have to do with Julius Caesar? He nullified the Senate practically as soon as he came into power.[/quote]

P-M = Pontifex Maximus (chief priest)

DIVO IVLIO CÆSARI = to the divine Julius Caesar

D-P ??

PP = pater patriae (father of the country)

SPQR was a symbol of Roman power.

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Postby bingley » Sat Oct 11, 2003 6:08 am

Wouldn't divus mean that Julius was already dead? This site didn't have the answer to your question but is perhaps worth knowing about anyway:

http://asgle.classics.unc.edu/abbrev/latin/

This site, however,

http://www.locutio.com/expressions-abre ... -intro.htm

gives decreto publico for DP
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Postby benissimus » Sat Oct 11, 2003 6:22 am

Another great site :D [/quote]
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Postby Skylax » Sun Oct 12, 2003 7:34 pm

bingley wrote:

http://www.locutio.com/expressions-abre ... -intro.htm

gives decreto publico for DP


In this case, it could be also dictatori perpetuo "dictator for ever", although the above mentioned site gives PP for the abbreviation of perpetuus.
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Postby Skylax » Tue Oct 14, 2003 8:09 pm

As Bingley has noticed it, DIVO IVLIO "to the Divine Julius" implies that Caesar is already dead. In the following times, the dead emperors were regularly labelled DIVVS by the Senate : DIVVS AVGVSTVS, (not Tiberius, not Caligula) DIVVS CLAVDIVS (not Nero) DIVVS VESPASIANVS, DIVVS TITVS, etc. They say that Vespasian, as he was about to die, said : Vae, puto, deus fio "Woe is me ! I think I am becoming a god !" A very British Roman.
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Postby mingshey » Wed Oct 15, 2003 4:18 am

I usualy try to avoid posting silly remarks on what I know very little, but I can't help mentioning this...

Today there are too great a population of acronyms in electronics world so that 'PCMCIA' is made a "backronym" for "People Cannot Memorize Computer Industry Acronyms". Romans must had similar satirical terms.
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Postby benissimus » Sun Oct 19, 2003 5:28 am

They say that Vespasian, as he was about to die, said : Vae, puto, deus fio "Woe is me ! I think I am becoming a god !" A very British Roman.


So THAT'S what he said! I read an excerpt of Seneca's Apocolocyntosis in which he says (mockingly) "Vae me, puto, concacavi."
Last edited by benissimus on Sun Oct 19, 2003 5:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby bingley » Sun Oct 19, 2003 8:25 am

Wasn't the Apocolocyntosis about Claudius, not Vespasian?
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Postby Skylax » Sun Oct 19, 2003 2:55 pm

You are right. Claudius made this less humorous comment. And what said Augustus ? "Acta est fabula ?"
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Postby benissimus » Thu Oct 23, 2003 11:42 am

So he didn't use an indirect statement in "Vae, puto, deus fio"? How common was that actually, or was it more common in speech than in writing?
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