Carpe Diem and Home Improvement

Ancient Roman phrases have a lot to do with home improvement

“Carpe Diem”

The popular translation of carpe diem is “seize the day,” what does this have to do with home improvements? Well the answer is that the popular translation is wrong. The full phrase, as used by Horace, has everything to do with home improvement and home maintenance.

The full quote by Horace is “carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero.” The Grammarist translates this as “pluck the day, trusting as little as possible in the future.” A note on the word carpe, most scholars would translate is as “pluck” like to pluck a fruit from a tree or a flower from the ground. I prefer a looser translation which I think resonates better with a modern audience, “harvest.” The rest of the phrase works translated literally, so that would be the only part of the Grammarist’s translation I would change.

You could consider the English equivalent to be “Make hay while the sunshines.” In that case, you don’t just make hay because it may rain tomorrow; but also because the hay will be beneficial in the future. So too will home improvements made today benefit you later. Are you thinking about resurfacing your deck? Doing that today could add value to your property tomorrow.

The most important take away points, from Horace’s full phrase, is to do things as soon as the time is right; not to assume that you’ll be able to in the future. Home improvements and maintenance should be made as soon as you can.  So if your gutters need cleaning, or you’d like to install gutter guards, don’t trust in some unspecified future, call Chevy Chase Exteriors today.



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