Thursday, 11 September 2014

What really is the meaning of "Pergo et Perago"? I proceed I strive and I accomplish?






It is obviously in Latin and is a popular motto for quite a few educational institutions here in England. Latin can be regarded as one of the mother tongues of the western languages in common with Greek and
Sanskrit.
The English translation for "Pergo et Perago" is generally accepted as "I undertake and I achieve" but it is probably an over simplistic attempt. Each of these two words can have several slightly different meanings and the essence may get lost in translation. One educational institution has translated it as "Strive to Achieve".
For example, the different meanings for pergo include to continue, proceed, go on with, pursue, press on, make haste etc. Perago could mean accomplish, complete, carry through the end, finish, thrust through, pierce through and so on.
Initially, I prefer "I proceed and I accomplish" as the translation but somehow it does not in my mind convey the complete message. I think a better transcript would be "I proceed I strive and I accomplish".
This is a short bonus post for this week which will hopefully provoke some thought. And also I am off on my travels again to the land of my birth and probably would not submit another post for a number of weeks.
Update A cigarette card issued by Players  around 1912 interprets the motto as I advance and accomplish. You can see it here.

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