Here are 50 common Latin expressions used in every day English:
1. ad infinitum
2. ad nauseum
Repetition that has become annoying or tiresome
He has sworn. Sworn statement
4. alma mater
Nourishing, kind, bounteous mother. School from which one graduated.
Also known as. Otherwise known as. Less commonly as the proper meaning of at another time, otherwise.
In another place. Elsewhere. Reason one couldn’t have been in a location where an act was committed.
7. alter ego
Other self. Another side of oneself.
short for anno Domini. In the year of our Lord. Number of years since the birth of Jesus Christ.
Short for ante meridiem. Before midday (noon.) Morning.
Before. Earlier. In a Supreme Court opinion, ante refers to an earlier page of the same opinion.
11. ante mortem
12. bona fide
Genuine. Real. With no intention to deceive.
13. c. / ca. / or cca.
Short for circa. Around. About. Approximately. Relative to a certain year.
14. carpe diem
Seize the day or moment. Make the best of the present r ather than delay or focus on the future.
15. cogito ergo sum
I think, therefore I am — Descartes
Agreement. General or widespread agreement
Race. Course of a race. Path of a race. Subjects comprising a course of academic study.
Short for curriculum vitae. The course of one’s life. Resume. List of significant academic and professional accomplishments, achievements, awards, education, and training.
19. de facto
True or matter of fact as it is, regardless of intent, good reason, authority, or official reason for being such.
Short for et cetera.
22. et al.
Short for et alia (neuter plural) or et alii (masculine plural) or et aliae (feminine plural). And others. And all of the others.
23. ex post
Short for exempli gratia. For the sake of example. For example.
Short for id est. That is. In other words.
26. in absentia
Conducted in the absence of.
27. in camera
In chambers. In private, commonly for legal proceedings, in the judge’s office (chambers.) before digital photography cameras were little “chambers.”
Unknown. With one’s identity concealed. This is actually an Italian word, derived from the Latin word incognitus.
By nodding. Implied. Indirectly implied. Suggested. Oblique allusion.
30. ipso facto
By that very fact or act. Therefore.
31. magnum opus
Great work. Greatest work. Masterpiece.
short for modus operandi. Mode or method of operation. How you do things.
33. n.b. or N.B.
short for nota bene. Note well. It is worth noting that.
34. per capita
Per person, for each person, of a population. Individually, but not for any particular person.
35. per se.
By itself. Intrinsically. Specifically.
36. p.m. / PM
short for post meridiem. After midday (noon.) Afternoon.
37. post mortem
short for post scriptum. Written after. After what has been written. In addition to what has been written. In addition.
As if. As though. Resembling. Similar but not quite exactly the same. Having many but not all the features of.
40. quid pro quo
This for that. An exchange of goods or services. A barter transaction. Any contractual transaction.
41. status quo
The existing state of affairs. As it is. As things are.
42. stricto sensu
or sensu stricto. In a narrow, tight, or strict sense. Strictly speaking.
Above. From the previous cited source.
44. tabula rasa
Clean slate. Blank slate. Absence of any preconceived notions, ideas, goals, or purpose.
45. veni, vidi, vici.
I came, I saw, I conquered.
The same exact words. Literally.
short for versus. Against. In opposition to. As opposed to. In contrast to.
I forbid. Reject.
49. vice versa
As well as the two immediately preceding subjects of a statement reversed. The same either way. The other way around.
short for videre licet or videlicet. Namely. That is.