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E pluribus unum

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56776.  Fri Mar 03, 2006 12:29 pm Reply with quote

Q: What is 'e pluribus unum'?

F: The national motto of the USA
A: A recipe for salad dressing

56777.  Fri Mar 03, 2006 12:39 pm Reply with quote

This was brought to our attention by posters in the outer forum.

The motto of the USA is "In God We Trust", which replaced "E pluribus unum" in 1956 (U.S. Code Title 36, Subtitle I, Part A, Chapter 3, Section 302). The old Latin tag had done service since 1776, when it was adopted by the Great Seal committee. It means "Out of the many, one" (literally, "One out of more"), and referred to the integration of 13 colonies into one country.

The phrase originally came from Moretum, a poem which used to be attributed to Virgil but is now regarded as anonymous, on the subject of a cheese, garlic and herb recipe. In the poem text, color est e pluribus unus describes the blending of colors into one.

It is also found in Saint Augustine's Confessions (397 to 398 AD) book IV, describing friendship.

E pluribus unum remains the motto of Portugese football club Sport Lisboa e Benfica, which suggests an alternative question (Whose motto is 'e pluribus unum'?). The motto of the EC expresses a similar sentiment: In varietate concordia (Unity in diversity).

56779.  Fri Mar 03, 2006 12:58 pm Reply with quote

"In God We Trust" is from the last verse of the national anthem, The Star-Spangled Banner (sort of - it's actually "in God is our trust") and is also the state motto of Florida.

A sign you see in American shops sometimes:
In God we trust. All others pay cash.

56786.  Fri Mar 03, 2006 1:51 pm Reply with quote

This came up on Celebrity Who Wants to be a Milliner:

Having breezed through a series of general knowledge questions to reach the 500,000 mark during the filming of the latest celebrity edition of Who Wants to be a Millionaire?, the flamboyant designer and his wife found themselves one answer away from the big one. All that stood between the couple and a 1m donation to the charity of their choice was the question: "Translated from the Latin, what is the motto of the United States?"

After glancing quickly through the options - In God We Trust; One Out Of Many; All As One; or Striving Together - Llewelyn-Bowen confidently gave the show's host, Chris Tarrant, his answer. Sadly, it was the wrong one. Or was it?
Llewelyn-Bowen opted for In God We Trust, only to be told that the correct answer was One Out Of Many - as the prize money shrank to 32,000.

But fortunately for the couple and their charity, the Shooting Star Children's Hospice, the production company behind the programme has since decided that the question was not as straightforward as it seemed. Yesterday, only hours after the show was recorded on Wednesday night, Celador announced it would give the Llewelyn-Bowens a second chance as the question did not meet its "usual high standards".

In God We Trust is the official motto of the United States, adopted on July 30, 1956. It appears on US currency. But it is not a translation from the Latin.

One Out Of Many is another US motto and is a direct translation of the Latin, E Pluribus Unum. It has appeared on the Great Seal since 1782.

A Celador spokeswoman said: "We are not satisfied that the question they went out of the game on meets our usual high standards of fair game play, so we have invited them back to resume the game with a new question at the same level. The question they answered was ambiguous."

This ruling was supported by the US embassy in London. "In God We Trust is the motto of the United States, so that part of the answer is right, but it wasn't translated from Latin. So he's right and he's wrong," said a spokeswoman.,3604,1685668,00.html


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