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why do we use the french language in our mottos?

As a remnant of the Roman occupation, Latin was the language through the Dark Ages - for the Clergy, Royalty, the Courts (such as they were) etc. If you were educated, you spoke and wrote Latin. The Vikings made some impression on the NE and Scotland and many place names up north are corruptions of the old Norse. William the Conqueror invaded in 1066 and brought a French-speaking court with him.

The result of that invasion was that you didn't get anywhere unless you spoke French. However, Latin remained a major force until the Middle Ages when Henry VIII got a major sad-on with Rome and dismantled the monasteries. With their power removed, the use of Latin started to dwindle. The use of the French language was also dwindling as it became obvious that they were our greatest enemy, along with Spain.

The English language as we know it was developing alongside, and absorbing all those cultural influences. But education was really restricted to the wealthy or religious until the early 18th century, so French and Latin were the languages that were taught, as they were the languages spoken at Court.

IIRC, it was Samuel Pepys who, in the 17th century, had the bright idea of compiling an English dictionary.

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Wench3000

War Hero
Bat_Crab said:
Wench3000 said:
The army still uses alot of French-isms.

For example, "biscuits brown" and "biscuits fruit" are direct translations of how the French would describe the above objects.
You wouldn't walk into a British shop and ask for a packet of biscuits digestive.

Theres plenty more phrases used in the army where the adjective comes second.

Wah?

This is due to stores nomenclature surely, where you break down the name to aid logical storage. If the service nomenclature was "brown biscuits" you'd end up with an area of stores filled entirely by brown items in no particular order, within which would be your biscuits.

This way if you don't know where a technical item is stored, you at least stand half a chance of finding it. If it is labelled "large silver spanner" rather than "spanner, large, silver" you would be hunting through all the large items, then the silver large items before finding said spanner, rather than going straight to the subsection devoted to spanners straight away (a bone example, I know, it works better with more obscurely titled items).

No wah and you've just explained why it makes sense to put the adjective 2cnd!

Merci!
 
Yellow_Devil said:
Does this mean that furriners use English mottos for their regiments too?

French army seems to use just French and Latin.



:rofl:
 
Yellow_Devil said:
Does this mean that furriners use English mottos for their regiments too?

French army seems to use just French and Latin.

I cannot see the French Court using an English word or phrase in any official capacity - regimental mottos especially. Agincourt and Waterloo still hurt the Gallic pride!

Motto. Noun. (pl. -oes or -os). A short sentence or phrase encapsulating a belief or ideal. Origin: 16th century Italian for "word".

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Bagster

Old-Salt
Court-Martial being another example. One question I've always wanted answered though, why do the RGJ spell Sgt with a J (Sjt) ??
 

booboo

Old-Salt
Rheinstorff said:
Check this motto out:



10 smart-arrse points to the arrser who can name the text, language and what it translates into.

There is no God but Allah and Mahomet is his messenger?? From Muhammad's Triumph at Mecca. I reckon it's in Arabic.
 
Yellow_Devil said:
Does this mean that furriners use English mottos for their regiments too?

French army seems to use just French and Latin.

The Belgian 2nd Commando Bn still I think has the the motto "United We Conquer" after WW2's 10 (Inter-Allied ) Commando from which it is descended. (The Belgians formed a troop in that Commando)
 

booboo

Old-Salt
Bagster said:
It's most definitely not Arabic mate, it looks like Cuniform writing, but fcuked if I know what it means.


It means what i said it means, it could be Nastaliq which is a form of Arabic. C'mon Rheinstorff, am I right??
 

Yellow_Devil

War Hero
Definitely cuneiform and with an Assyrian chariot - must relate to when 1 Sqn was formed in Iraq (first time round - in 1920s)

no idea what it says though
 
booboo said:
Rheinstorff said:
Check this motto out:



10 smart-arrse points to the arrser who can name the text, language and what it translates into.

There is no God but Allah and Mahomet is his messenger?? From Muhammad's Triumph at Mecca. I reckon it's in Arabic.

Unlikely, 1 Sqn RAF Regiment started life in Egypt as 1 Armoured Car Sqn hence the chariot on the badge. The language is probably mesopotamian although I first thought it might have been Sanskrit. It is highly improbable that it declares a religious message of any kind. Unfortunately no amount of web trawling has revealed an answer to the motto, any Rock Apes lurking that could tell us?
 

Wench3000

War Hero
Yellow_Devil said:
Definitely cuneiform and with an Assyrian chariot - must relate to when 1 Sqn was formed in Iraq (first time round - in 1920s)

no idea what it says though

This place is sht?
 

Mangonel

Old-Salt
Rheinstorff said:
Check this motto out:



10 smart-arrse points to the arrser who can name the text, language and what it translates into.

"Swift and Sudden"; not unlike a bad dose of the runs.
 
booboo said:
Hello!!! It says There is no God but Allah and Mahomet is his messenger. Can you hear me??

Prove it. Why would an Islamic message be a motto for a British unit and why would it be written in cuneiform rather than arabic?
 

Yellow_Devil

War Hero
booboo said:
Hello!!! It says There is no God but Allah and Mahomet is his messenger. Can you hear me??

But not in Arabic. That would be (roughly) "La ilaha ila Allah wa Muhammad ar-rasul Allah" in Arabic script - which this isn't.
 

Rheinstorff

Old-Salt
The text is cuniform, the language is ancient Assyrian (Akkadian), and the free translation is Swift Sudden. Well done the cuniform spotters!
 
Bagster said:
Court-Martial being another example. One question I've always wanted answered though, why do the RGJ spell Sgt with a J (Sjt) ??

Oxford Concise:

Serjeant. Noun. (in official lists) a sergeant in the Foot Guards. Origin; ME (Middle English).

I suspect because it has always been spelled that way!

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