Nobody loves pain

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoreet dolore magna aliquam erat volutpat. Have you ever wondered where this lorem ipsum nonsense came from? Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerci tation ullamcorper suscipit lobortis nisl ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. It looks like Latin, but not quite. For instance, where does the word adipiscing come from? Adipiscing isn’t even good pig Latin. Google quickly points you to two good Lorem Ipsum sites: and (both of which sport automatic text-spewing ipsumators). Supposedly “Lorem ipsum” has been used as dummy text since the 1500s, but I have my doubts. The reason for its modern success is undeniable: PageMaker included ipsum as its automatic fill text. But I won’t be happy until I hear the story about how the original Latin (shown below) was corrupted into something weird resembling Latin. I bet the final story has a lot more to do with a software engineer in the 1980s than a typesetter in the 1500s. Do you know the real story? Let me know.

For the record, as seen at the site, we have the Latin original from Cicero‘s De Finibus:

Neque porro quisquam est, qui dolorem ipsum quia dolor sit amet, consectetur, adipisci velit, sed quia non numquam eius modi tempora incidunt ut labore et dolore magnam aliquam quaerat voluptatem.

which gives the English

Nor again is there anyone who loves or pursues or desires to obtain pain of itself, because it is pain, but because occasionally circumstances occur in which toil and pain can procure him some great pleasure.

The English is courtesy of Rackham’s 1914 translation of Cicero’s De Finibus Bonorum Et Malorum (translated as On Ends). Follow the link and spot the Y2K bug. According to Amazon, Harvard University published this book in 2014. I think Marcus Tullius Cicero would be delighted to know so many people are being exposed to his work, even into the future of the future.

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