Latin Proverbs, Mottoes, Phrases, and Words: Group M

(classical-language maxims, slogans, adages, proverbs, and words of wisdom that can still capture our modern imagination)

Expressions of general truths: Latin to English maxims, proverbs, and mottoes

Word entries are from Latin unless otherwise indicated.

Misericordias Domini in aeternum cantabo.
I will sing the mercies of the Lord forever.

A motto of Abingdon School, U.K.

Mistura fiat.
Let a mixture be made.

A pharmaceutical term used in prescriptions.

mistura, mist.
Mixture.

A pharmaceutical term used in prescriptions.

mobile vulgus
Movable public; the unstable, fickle crowd.

The mob, the fickle or excited crowd; a phrase that recognizes the inconstancy of popular taste and the ease with which clever politicians can influence the great mass of voters.

The English word mob is a contraction of this Latin phrase.

modus operandi (s), M.O. (moh" duhs ahp" uh RAHN dee) (noun), modi operandi (moh" dee ahp" uh RAHN dee) (pl)
A scheme which is used when trying to succeed in doing something: A modus operandi involves a process of accomplishing something with a certain approach or a specific procedure; such as, a criminal who uses a unique modus operandi can be more accurately identified by the particular way he or she has committed an unlawful act.

A modus operandi is not restricted just to police or criminal use because it also refers to any plan, technique, or system for achieving an objective or purpose.

A mode or manner of working or operating.
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modus vivendi (MOH duhs vi VEN dee) (noun), modi vivendi (MOH dee vi VEN dee) (pl)
1. A way of living, a way of life; a way of getting along together: Any modus vivendi is a compromise or living arrangements between people of differing interests or opinions.
2. The temporary arrangement between two or more parties, or countries, to enable them to get along together, pending a full settlement of a dispute: The nations worked out a modus vivendi in order to avoid war.

There are some authorities who maintain that modus vivendi should describe only a truce between disputing parties until there is a settlement of their disagreements.

3. Etymology: a Latin phrase which means "manner of living" in English.
A temporary way of living or having a special arrangement.
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Monopolia dicitur, cum unus solus aliquod genus mercature universum emit, pretium ad suum libitum statuens. (a legal statement in Latin)
Translation: "It is said to be a monopoly when one person alone buys up the whole of one kind of commodity, fixing a price at his own pleasure."
monopolium
The sole power, right, or privilege of sale; monopoly.

A legal term.

monopoly (s) (noun), monopolies (nouns)
1. A situation in which one company controls an industry or is the only provider of a product or service: "A monopoly is an extreme situation that is used in capitalism and by many governments because most people believe that, with few exceptions, the system just doesn't work when there is only one provider of a product or service because there is no incentive to improve it so it will meet the demands of consumers."

By definition, monopoly is characterized by an absence of competition; which sometimes results in high prices and inferior products."

2. A product or service whose supply is controlled by only one company and which has an exclusive control of a commodity or service in a particular market or a control that makes possible the manipulation of prices: "Several governments attempt to prevent commercial monopolies from existing through the use of antitrust laws.
3. In law, a legal right to the exclusive control of an industry or service, as granted by a government: "A situation in which a single company or group owns all or nearly all of the market for a given type of product or service."

"Public monopolies are set up by governments to provide essential services; such as, water, electricity, police services, garbage collecting, etc.; so, in such cases, a monopoly is probably more effcient than an oligopoly or multiopoly would be."

4. A law or a situation in which one supplier or producer controls over one third of a market: "Naturally, there are gray areas which take, for example, the granting of patents on new inventions. These provide a monopoly on a product for a set period of time."

"The reasoning behind patents is to give innovators some time to recoup what are often large research and development costs. In theory, they are a way of using monopolies to promote innovation."

monopsony (s), monopsonies (pl) (noun forms)
1. A situation in which a particular type of product or service is only being bought or used by one customer: "An example of pure monopsony is a firm that is the only buyer of workers in an isolated town where the company would be able to pay lower wages to its employees than it would if other firms were present."
2. A market situation in which the products or services of several sellers is sought by just one buyer.
3. A market in which goods or services are offered by several sellers but there is only one buyer.
4. A condition in which there is only one buyer for the product of a large number of sellers.
5. Etymology: from Ancient Greek ????? (monos), "single" + ?????? (opsonia), "purchase".
Montani semper liberi.
Mountaineers are always free.

Motto of the State of West Virginia, USA.

Morituri te salutamus.
We who are about to die salute you.

See Ave, Imperator (above) for additional information.

Mors ab alto.
Death from [a] height or from above.
Mors certa sed hora in certa.
Death is certain, only the hour is uncertain.

From a 16th century German sun dial.

Mors tua, vita mea.
Your death, my life.

It also means, "You must die so that I may live." A reference to someone who can preserve his own life only by taking the life of another. For instance, it could refer to a very ill patient who is waiting for an organ transplant from a dying donor or some other situation in which a person's life is dependent upon the death of another person.


Pointing to a page about a kleptomaniac Units of mottoes and proverbs listed by groups: A to X.