In honour of my local open air swimming pool, Jesus Green Lido, reopening for Summer this coming Saturday, I am writing some swimming related posts.
This one is for all my Did you swim today? chums: I am constantly delighted, encouraged and inspired by your endeavours in pools, lakes, rivers and oceans, at every point of the achievement spectrum. You guys make me want to spend more time in the water and I thank you for that.
Here is a selection of Latin mottos all about swimming that I made up, with some inspiration from real mottos.
Natando amicitia — friendship through swimming. Very appropriate for DYST, I feel.
Nunc est natandum — Now is the time for swimming! This is inspired by the more common nunc est bibendum, now is the time for drinking. Also a good motto.
Fortius natando — stronger through swimming. This and the three following are variations on fairly common mottos.
Fortis et liber natando — strong and free through swimming.
Ab aqua libertas — from water comes freedom.
Natando libertas — freedom through swimming.
Per aquas ad astra — through water to the stars, inspired by the military motto per ardua ad astra, through hardship to the stars.
Ad natandum paratus — ready for swimming. Another military inspired one. Utrinque paratus, ready for anything, is the motto of the Parachute Regiment.
Sic itur ad aquas — this is the way to the water. This is based on another military motto, this is the way to the stars.
Citius, swimmius, fortius — not quite the Olympic motto, citius, altius, fortius, faster, higher, stronger, but you get the picture. NB swimmius is not actually a Latin word. I made it up.
Animus in natando liber — in swimming an independent spirit. The original reads animus in consulendo liber, in counsel an independent spirit, a phrase from the Roman senator Marcus Porcius Cato. It is the motto of NATO.
Fiat piscina/ stagnum/ colymbus — let there be a pool (man-made)/ pool (naturally occurring)/ swimming pool. Piscina sounds like the French word for swimming pool, piscine, while stagnum is a general word for any expanse of enclosed water, but sounds to an English ear a little less wholesome. I had never come across the word colymbus before researching this post. It definitely means swimming pool, but it is also the name of a type of oyster. My phrase is a play on the biblical Fiat lux, let there be light.
Fluctuat nec mergitur — he/she/it floats and does not sink. This is the motto of Paris, originally an island in the River Seine. Surely a good swimming motto.
Gens una sumus natando — we are one family through swimming.
Semper natans — always swimming.
I hope you have enjoyed these!
If you want to adapt any of them, you can play around with the word order in any of the phrases, but if you want to swap words across the phrases you will have to check the grammar — just ask!
Please let me know if you do use any of them — I would be delighted to hear from you and I would love to see pics of them in action!
Please do share any other swimming mottos you may have come across in the comments below.
Happy swimming! [I’m now wondering how best to say that in Latin…]