Hi! Welcome to “Dusty Phrases.” You will find below an ancient phrase in one language or another, along with its English translation. You may also find the power to inspire your friends or provoke dread among your enemies.
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Semper fidelis, shortened often to “Semper Fi” is the motto of the United States Marine Corps. From Wiki:
Semper fidelis (Latin pronunciation: [ˈsɛmpɛr fɪˈdeːlɪs]) is a Latin phrase that means “always faithful” or “always loyal” (Fidelis or Fidelity). It is the motto of the United States Marine Corps, usually shortened to Semper Fi. It is also in use as a motto for towns, families, schools, and other military units.
It is thought that it originated from the phrase that the senators of ancient Rome declaimed at the end of their intervention.
The earliest definitively recorded use of semper fidelis is as the motto of the French town of Abbeville since 1369. It has also been used by other towns, and is recorded as the motto of various European families since the 16th century, and possibly since the 13th century or earlier. Records show many families in England, France and Ireland using this motto.
The earliest recorded use of semper fidelis by a military unit is by the Duke of Beaufort’s Regiment of Foot, raised in south-western England in 1685. This is apparently linked to its use as a motto by the city of Exeter no later than 1660. Subsequently, a variety of military organizations adopted the motto.
The US Marines logo incorporates the phrase.