Thursday, 13 December 2012

Pipians

The Holy Father using Twitter has brought a number of responses from the Blogosphere, not least Mulier Fortis' Habemus Tweet.

I'm sure we can do better in Latin than 'tweet', though.  My mind goes cranking back thirty years to reading Catullus about Lesbia's wretched dead sparrow*. There we find in Lugete, o Veneres Cupidinesque (poem 3)
…circumsiliens modo huc modo illuc
ad solam dominam usque pipiabat.
So, pipiare is 'to tweet'.

Now someone who's Latin is better than mine ought to make a noun out of it. Pipia? So Habemus pipiam?


* and yes, I know it might mean something else, so don't bother posting rude comments.

11 comments:

Antonia said...

...Pipiatum? (lit. a thing having been tweeted)?

Eccles said...

On my own blog I used the form pipio-pipire-pipivi-pipitum, which I found at
http://www.verbix.com/webverbix/go.php?D1=9&H1=109&T1=pipio

Mac McLernon said...

My knowledge of Latin is so dire that for many years the only response in the Mass that I knew was "Kyrie eleison"...

...the rest was all Greek to me!

Thanks for the plug, Father!

Fr William said...

I was going to point out Eccles' usage, but I see the magister himself has dropped by to speak in propria persona.

Oxford Latin Dictionary gives pipulus (m.) or pipulum (n.), "a shrill or piping sound". (Either form would of course appear the same in the accusative, i.e. "Habemus pipulum".) The authors cited are Plautus and the 2nd-c. AD rhetorician M. Cornelius Fronto.

Fr William said...

"… someone who's Latin is better than mine …"

Never mind the Latin, Father …

(And in case you're wondering: yes, that middle "P" in my initials does stand for "Pedant"!)

Fr William R. Young said...

By analogy with "multa mentiri" - literally: "to lie many things" meaning "to tell a lot of lies", I would suggest that tweet is deponent in Latin, pipiari, and that people tweet many things, as it were: :Nudiustertius Papa BXVI pipiatus est aliquid". On the other hand, perhaps not.

RC said...

IIRC, Fr. Zed has proposed pipitus, so the first papal tweet would be the "pipitus primus pontificalis".

Pastor in Valle said...

How about pípulum, -i, for "tweet" as a noun? It sounds about right to me.

Entered by Anonymous

bedwere said...

Ave, pater! Pipulum neutrum vel pipulus masculinus, sicut ostenditur in dictionario:

http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0059%3Aentry%3Dpipulum

IanW said...

Love the new header-photo', Fr.

IanW said...

Oh for a judgement from Fr. Reg.