Dum spiro spero

From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core
Jump to: navigation, search
For the album by Dir en grey, see Dum Spiro Spero (album).

Dum spiro spero means "While I breathe, I hope"[1] in Latin and is a modern paraphrase of ideas that survive in two ancient writers, Theocritus[2] and Cicero.[3]

It is a motto of various places, families, and organizations.

States and towns

  • Dum Spiro Spero is inscribed above door of Nymans House, West Sussex, England, old home of the Messel family now a National Trust property and gardens.[citation needed]
  • Dum Spiro Spero is inscribed on medallions marking the Barbary Coast Trail in San Francisco, CA [4]


Dum spiro spero is the family motto of numerous families worldwide, including:

  • The Bekarovski (or Bekiaris) Family, Macedonia (Aegean Macedonia)
  • The Dearden Family
  • The Clan MacLennan
  • The Olphert family (Ballyconnell, Ireland) The motto and the family coat of arms is still visible above the door at Ballyconnell House, Donegal.[5]
  • The Dillon family (Ireland).
  • The Bransom family (England), Now USA
  • The Asscoti or Ascotti family[6]
  • The Baker family (Derbyshire, England)[6]
  • The Banantyne family (Derbyshire, England)[7]
  • The Bussell family (Cambridgeshire, England
  • The Chitty family (Sussex)
  • The Colquhoun family (Dunyelder, Scotland)[7]
  • The Corbet(t) family (Ireland)
  • The Coriton family (England)[7]
  • The Cotter family (Ireland), Now New Zealand
  • The Dewsbury family (England), Now USA
  • The Dillon family (England)[7]
  • The Elphdick family (Sussex, England) [7]
  • The Everitt family (Kent, England) [7]
  • The Floryanski family (Krawkow, Poland)
  • The Gahan family (Ireland)
  • The De Garis family (Guernsey). The family crest surmounts a window (with the motto in Latin) at St. Saviour's Church in Western Parishes, Guernsey.[8]
  • The Gaunt family (Kent, England)[6][7]
  • The Gaunt family (Staffordshire, England)[7]
  • The Glazebrook family (Lancashire, England)[6]
  • The Golledge Family (Ireland), Now USA
  • The Herring Family (England)
  • The Hoare Family (England)
  • The Hodgkinson Family (England)
  • The Hunter family (Perth, Scotland)[6]
  • The Ingram family (England)
  • The Mason family (Normandy)
  • The Morgan family (Wales)
  • The Nelson-Smith family (Surrey)
  • The Pearson family (Forfarshire, Scotland)[6]
  • The Pount family (Scotland)[7]
  • The Quenzer Family (Germany)
  • The Roberts family (Kent, England)[6]
  • The Rylands family (Cheshire, England)[6]
  • The Sharp family (Tyne and Wear, England)
  • The Snowden family (Yorkshire, England)
  • The Sparks family (Faraham Parish Hampshire, England) now USA
  • The Spearman family (Shropshire & Durham, England)[6]
  • The Staunton family (Gloucestershire, England)[6]
  • The Standard family (Bedfordshire, England)
  • The Symonds family (Bedfordshire, England)
  • The Walsh family (County Clare, Ireland)
  • The Whitworth family (Durham, England)
  • The Whitehead family
  • The Thompson Clan (Irish)
  • The Young family - displayed st Stanhiil Court, Surrey, in the stained glass window showing the Family Arms of William Young (Deputy Chairman and co-founder of Lloyd's of London)

Other noted individuals who used this motto:

  • Sir James Laurence Cotter, Baronet (Co. Cork, Ireland)[6]
  • Dr T.G. Dillon (Roscommon, Ireland)[6]
  • Vicount Dillon of Costello Gallen (Co. Sligo, Ireland)[6]
  • Charles Hunter, Esquire (Anglesey, Wales)[6]
  • Henry Thomas Partridge (Norfolk, England)[6]
  • Sir Owen Roberts (London, England)[6]
  • William James Sandford - Thompson, J.P (Montrose, Scotland)[6]
  • Captain Alfred Ernest Speer, Esquire (Surrey, England)[6]
  • General Sir Edward Stanton (Gloucestershire, England)[6]
  • John Walsh, Esquire (Kilkenny, Ireland)[6]
  • The Wenzel Family (Germany)


Czech Army's 601st Special Forces Group, based in Prostějov, adopted "Dum spiro spero" as its motto.[9]


  1. "dum spiro, spero". Merriam-Webster. Retrieved September 21, 2014.
  2. Idylls 4, Line 42: ἐλπίδες ἐν ζωοῖσιν, ἀνέλπιστοι δὲ θανόντες.
  3. Letters to Atticus Book 9, Letter 10, Section 3: dum anima est, spes esse dicitur
  4. http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Survival-tips-for-life-on-the-Barbary-Coast-6690198.php#photo-7381306
  5. "Stair an Fál Carrach". An Fál Carrach. Retrieved September 21, 2014.
  6. 6.00 6.01 6.02 6.03 6.04 6.05 6.06 6.07 6.08 6.09 6.10 6.11 6.12 6.13 6.14 6.15 6.16 6.17 6.18 6.19 Fairbairn, James (1905). Fairbairn's Book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland. London : T. C. & E. C. Jack. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 7.8 Deuchar, Alexander (1817). British crests : containing the crests and mottos of the families of Great Britain and Ireland; together with those of the principal cities; and a glossary of heraldic terms (volume 2). Edinburgh : Kirkwood & Son. 
  8. Craske, L.G.H. "The Stained Glass Windows of St Saviour’s Parish Church, Guernsey". St Saviour's Church. Retrieved September 21, 2014.
  9. 601skss

External links