Wednesday, December 14, 2011


Here is today's distich by John Owen, with an English translation by Thomas Harvey, 2.213. Of course, the sentiment expressed here - that sound cannot be reproduced, except in the form of an echo - has been superseded by the technology of audio recording. You can read about the history of sound recording here in this Wikipedia article; the first audio recordings date back to the primitive "phonautograms" back in the 1850s!

Vocem nulla potest ars sculpere, pingere nulla.
Sola repercussos exprimit echo sonos.

No skill nor Art a voice can form, or sound:
Sole Echo doth reiterate the sound.


echo - echo
vox - voice, sound
nullus - not any, none
possum - can, be able
ars - art, technique, skill
sculpo - carve, engrave, sculpt
pingo - paint
solus - only, alone, sole
repercussus - reflected, rebounded
exprimo - squeeze out, express, portray
sonus - sound

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