Hoyt & Roberts, comps. Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations. 1922.


Si fueris Romæ, Romano vivito more;
Si fueris alibi, vivito sicut ibi.
If you are at Rome live in the Roman style; if you are elsewhere live as they live elsewhere.
St. Ambrose to St. Augustine. Quoted by Jeremy Taylor. Ductor Dubitantium. I. 1. 5.

When I am at Rome I fast as the Romans do; when I am at Milan I do not fast. So likewise you, whatever church you come to, observe the custom of the place, if you would neither give offence to others, nor take offence from them.
Another version of St. Ambrose’s advice.

When I am at Rome, I fast on a Saturday: when I am at Milan I do not. Do the same. Follow the custom of the church where you are.
St. Augustine gives this as the advice of St. Ambrose to him. See Epistle to Januarius. II. 18. Also Epistle 36.

Now conquering Rome doth conquered Rome inter,
And she the vanquished is, and vanquisher.
To show us where she stood there rests alone
Tiber; and that too hastens to be gone.
Learn, hence what fortune can. Towns glide away;
And rivers, which are still in motion, stay.
Joachim du Bellay—Antiquitez de Rome. (Third stanza of this poem taken from Janus Vitalis.) Trans. by William Browne, from a Latin version of the same by Janus Vitalis—In Urbem Romam Qualis est hodie. See Gordon Goodwin’s ed. of Poems of William Browne. Trans. also by Spenser, in Complaints.

Every one soon or late comes round by Rome.
Robert Browning—Ring and the Book. V. 296.

When they are at Rome, they do there as they see done.
Burton—Anatomy of Melancholy. III. 4. 2.

O Rome! my country! city of the soul!
Byron—Childe Harold. Canto IV. St. 78.

When falls the Coliseum, Rome shall fall;
And when Rome falls—the World.
Byron—Childe Harold. Canto IV. St. 145.

You cheer my heart, who build as if Rome would be eternal.
Augustus Cæsar to Piso. See Plutarch—Apothegms. “Eternal Rome” said by Tibullus. II. 5. 23. Repeated by Ammianus Marcellinus—Rerum Gestarum. XVI. Ch. X. 14.

Cuando á Roma fueres, haz como vieres.
When you are at Rome, do as you see.
Cervantes—Don Quixote.

Y á Roma por todo.
To Rome for everything.
Cervantes—Don Quixote. 2. 13. 55.

Quod tantis Romana manus contexuit annis
Proditor unus iners angusto tempore vertit.
What Roman power slowly built, an unarmed traitor instantly overthrew.
Claudianus—In Rufinum. II. 52.

Veuve d’un peuple-roi, mais reine encore du monde.
[Rome] Widow of a King-people, but still queen of the world.
Gabriel Gilbert—Papal Rome.

Rome, Rome, thou art no more
As thou hast been!
On thy seven hills of yore
Thou sat’st a queen.
Mrs. Hemans—Roman Girl’s Song.

Omitte mirari beatæ
Fumum et opes strepitumque Romæ.
Cease to admire the smoke, wealth, and noise of prosperous Rome.
Horace—Carmina. III. 29. 11.

In tears I tossed my coin from Trevi’s edge.
A coin unsordid as a bond of love—
And, with the instinct of the homing dove,
I gave to Rome my rendezvous and pledge.
And when imperious Death
Has quenched my flame of breath,
Oh, let me join the faithful shades that throng that fount above.
Robert Underwood Johnson—Italian Rhapsody.

Tous chemins vont à Rome; ainsi nos concurrents
Crurent, pouvoir choisir des sentiers différents.
All road’s lead to Rome, but our antagonists think we should choose different paths.
La Fontaine—Le Juge Arbitre. Fable XII.

Rome was not built in a day.
Latin in Palingenius. (1537). Beaumont and Fletcher—Little French Lawyer. Act I. Sc. 3. Same idea “No se ganó Zamora en una hora.—Zamora was not conquered in an hour.” Cervantes—Don Quixote. II. 23.

See the wild Waste of all-devouring years!
How Rome her own sad Sepulchre appears,
With nodding arches, broken temples spread!
The very Tombs now vanish’d like their dead!
Pope—Moral Essays. Epistle to Addison.

I am in Rome! Oft as the morning ray
Visits these eyes, waking at once I cry,
Whence this excess of joy? What has befallen me?
And from within a thrilling voice replies,
Thou art in Rome! A thousand busy thoughts
Rush on my mind, a thousand images;
And I spring up as girt to run a race!
Sam’l Rogers—Rome.

I had rather be a dog, and bay the moon,
Than such a Roman.
Julius Cæsar. Act IV. Sc. 3. L. 27.

Utinam populus Romanus unam cervicem haberet!
Would that the Roman people had but one neck!
Suetonius. In Life of Caligula ascribes it to Caligula. Seneca and Dion Cassius credit it to the same. Ascribed to Nero by others.