Re:Creators Episode 21

Episode 21 of Re:Creators ends with a rather nicely typeset message to the viwer, in Japanese and Latin:

Re:Creators episode 21, at 21m 23s

Mundum divit factum, atque pulchre.

That’s some unusual Latin. I wonder how they translated it? Can I do better?

Google Translate1 and Yandex Translate both support Latin output, but their results don’t match the screencap. Bing doesn’t support Latin at the time of writing2.

Google Translate: Dives est mundus et pulchra

Yandex Translate: Mundus est dives, et pulchra

Note that Google and Yandex have nearly identical outputs after accounting for Latin’s order-independent grammar, and it’s a reasonable-looking solution.

Lets look more directly at the vocabulary being used:

We now have enough to attempt a literal translation:

Mundus est copiosum ac pulchrum.
The world is bountiful and beautiful.

But we can do better! The original text appears to be using grammatical forms from Classical Japanese. To a native reader it would seem slightly poetic or literary, the feeling of which we can reproduce in Latin and English by adjusting the vocabulary and word order. Amazon’s English subtitles translated this as “The world is full of abundance and beauty”. As a native speaker I don’t know how to name the “X is Y” -> “X is full of Y” pattern, but it does seem to add a certain poetic feeling.

First, lets review the use of atque / ac. To me, those words seem more suited for “I went to the store to buy eggs ac milk”. Latin has a ‑que suffix, which is a conjunctive that appended to words to imply they go together and are somehow related. The world’s beauty is beacause it is abundant, so ‑que may be a good fit here.

To convert the adjective pulcher into a noun, we need to add the ‑tudo suffix – more specifically, the accusative case ‑tudinem. While we’re at it, lets use abundantia (accusative: abundantiam) instead of copia to match Amazon.

Putting these adjustments together, we arrive at this translation:

Mundus abundantiam plenus est pulchritudinemque.
The world is full of abundance and beauty.

I don’t like how long this Latin is. Romans valued brevity, so lets step back a bit toward our first translation. By using the verb abundat and our adjective pulchrum we can trim out almost half of it. I’m using et for this one instead of ‑que to resemble Horace’s dulce et decorum est …”5, and moving mudus est to the end:

Abundat et pulchrum mundus est.
The world is abundant and beautiful.

This looks reasonable. I’m content with it.

If you’ve somehow made it to the end of this page and thought “I want to read another eight hundred pages of this”, find a copy of Le Ton beau de Marot by Hofstadter.

  1. Google Translate does struggle with Latin, but can usually get the gist across.
  2. Bing does support Klingon! Any trekkies around who can check their work? Bing Translate: Japanese to Klingon
  3. The word dives is familiar to many English speakers via The Parable of Dives and Lazarus.
  5. This may seem strange given what I said about ac earlier. A native Roman speaker of Latin would probably have considered them equivalent, but in modern times the fame of Horace makes et seem a bit fancier.