What does "Alea jacta est" mean


We all know that Latin is a dead language, which has become the starting point for the whole group of languages ​​used to this day. Of course, it certainly cannot be about his living use of speech, unlike in certain environments.

How Latin is a dead language

Medicine can be called the present modern abode of Latin, for it was she who was used to create the whole conceptual apparatus of this science. Pharmacy is not far behind in this respect.


The basic principles of this language, as already mentioned, served as the basis for modern Italian, Spanish and even to some extent German, no matter how difficult it may be to believe.

Resurgence of popularity

As they say, everything new is well-forgotten old, and the Latin language, or rather its phraseology, is one of the best evidence of this. Expressions characteristic of the vocabulary of the ancient Romans are now becoming increasingly popular in the medium of literature, cinema and, oddly enough, the tattoo culture.

Perhaps it is the Latin lines that are currently the most common version of body decoration, which is understandable, given their melodiousness and in most cases a deep meaning.


Expressions like “Alea jacta est” are especially in demand among young people who have decided to make a tattoo that has real meaning and expresses the worldview in the best possible way. The only problem is that sometimes people take such actions, having no idea what exactly they have to deal with.

On the meaning of a popular expression

It is about the phrase "Alea jacta est", as one of the most popular options for a tattoo, and will be discussed in this article. If you translate the expression literally, in the Russian version the tinge of fatalism inherent in the phrase as a whole will be especially obvious. “The die is cast” - this is how one can translate such a common expression today, which is not so rare to be found on someone's wrist or, for example, neck.

Such attention to the aphorism is completely unsurprising, because, in addition to the deep meaning as such, it also has a very distinct tint of history, because its origin is connected with the legend of one of the most legendary rulers in history.

Who cast lots

The roots of the expression “Alea jacta est” go back to the times of ancient Rome, when Guy Julius Caesar made his most phenomenal conquests. According to the legend, this ruler is the author of the phrase, which has received such an active use in modern times.


According to surviving testimony, the great Roman said exactly that, crossing the Rubicon River on the Apennine Peninsula. He did it for a reason - because at that moment the fate of many thousands of people and vast territories depended on his decision. The sacramental “Alea jacta est” was at that moment a kind of signal to the beginning of one of the greatest civil wars in history.

These words had even greater meaning due to the monstrously unequal forces that existed at that time. Crossing the Rubicon, Caesar did not have a strong enough army to easily conquer the necessary territories. Nevertheless, the lot was cast, the war began, and the strategic thinking of the great commander bore fruit.

Modern shade of fatalism

Now that we have learned how to translate “Alea jacta est”, let's look at the modern understanding of this expression. If initially it mattered more likely post-factum, which determines the further development of events, then in the representation of the modern person it is more a stimulus to action.


“Alea jacta est” - a tattoo, as a rule, designed to make it easier for people to make a choice. It should lead to this or that development of events, removing from the person a part of his responsibility.

Perhaps this was the main reason why the expression “Alea jacta est”, whose pronunciation is also quite melodious, has become so popular in modern times.

Reflection in the gaming industry

It is quite natural that an expression with such a rich history could not have been taken away by the gaming industry. Today, the strategy “Alea jacta est” is a rather popular game, the essence of which is the correct alignment of forces for conquering the maximum territory.

The strategy is step-by-step, which means that opponents take actions in turn, and after the completion of the course it is impossible to take any measures. In this case, the basic principle is borrowed precisely from the historical situation described earlier in this article and which caused the appearance of the expression in question.

Another characteristic feature of this game is the need to calculate moves a few steps forward, as it would have been in actual combat. Perhaps it is this realism and features of the card, some nuances of action and caused the increased popularity of this game among modern youth.


But one thing is certain: major events, significant milestones of history never become forgotten. They necessarily find the subsequent reflection, sometimes in the most unpredictable variants. Films are filmed about famous battles and games are written, ancient plots form the basis of modern literature, and the catch phrases sometimes become not only the slogans of major world brands, but also the credo of thousands of people interested in the cultural and historical development of humanity. The main thing is that such values ​​are not forgotten and do not lose their value.

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