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Old 12-23-2007, 02:06 PM
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What's Latin For "Onward And Upward"?

We're scattering my father's ashes in a few days. He always said farewell with "Onward and upward" then repeat it in Latin. I know it was something like 'Exus oquiamus'. What is the proper phrase? It seems appropriate to say it when we scatter the ashes, but I can't remember the words.

Thanks in advance. Please forgive me if I don't respond to this thread right away, but I do not have regular internet access at the moment.
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Old 12-23-2007, 02:31 PM
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"Ever Upward" is the translation given by the NY state motto people, but I have also seen it translated as "onward and upward."
Old 12-23-2007, 02:56 PM
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It might have been excelsior, which literally means "higher," but often gets translated as "onward and upward."

Porro et sursum literally means "Onward and upward."

Neither of those sound phonetically like what you remember, though.
Old 12-23-2007, 02:57 PM
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Unfortunately, "Excelsior" as a motto sounds like you are extolling the virtues of packing materials.
Old 12-23-2007, 02:58 PM
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Ad astra, means "To the stars"
Old 12-23-2007, 03:01 PM
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Exi seque occulemus. ("You go away and we'll hide).

Okay, seriously, the phrase doesn't seem familiar to me. I agree that the first element might be some form of excelsus such as excelse ("upward") or excelsior ("very much upward") or the whole thing might possibly be excelsissime ("upward to the highest degree"). The -mus ending makes me think it could be a related verb form like excellamus ("may we excel"), even though that doesn't sound much like what you remember.

"Forward" would normally be porro or something similar, which doesn't agree with your transcription.
Old 12-23-2007, 04:37 PM
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sic itur ad astra: Thus do we reach the stars.
Old 12-23-2007, 04:56 PM
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Originally Posted by DocCathode
'Exus oquiamus'
My Latin is almost non-existent, but could the second word be the first person plural of some verb? Maybe someone who actually knows Latin can take a guess...?
Old 12-23-2007, 05:40 PM
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: St. Paul, MN
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Originally Posted by John Mace
My Latin is almost non-existent, but could the second word be the first person plural of some verb? Maybe someone who actually knows Latin can take a guess...?
-amus is indeed a first person plural ending but the "oqui" part doesn't mean anything to me, nor can I find anything similar in my dictionaries. Perhaps the word was agiamus ("let us go") or exeamus ("let us go out")?

Last edited by Diogenes the Cynic; 12-23-2007 at 05:41 PM.
Old 12-23-2007, 06:09 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 5,601
Prorsus et sursum means "Forward and upward". My source gives no direct translation for "onward".

We had both of our parents cremated and interred in the family plot on the highest point in town, overlooking the harbor.

May your dad Requiescat in pace! (Rest in peace.)

I couldn't find my Latin textbooks. My source :

Last edited by Ignatz; 12-23-2007 at 06:10 PM.
Old 12-23-2007, 06:15 PM
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"Exus" means "burn down" and my above source gave no translation for "oquiamus",
Old 12-24-2013, 09:03 AM
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Et deinceps sursum

means "onward and upward."
Old 12-24-2013, 02:39 PM
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: London
Posts: 330
The RAF, Royal Air Force motto is : "Per Ardua ad Astra" see here:

Although strictly speaking it's not exactly what you may be looking for, it has the advantage of not having a direct English translation.

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