John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton


My friend Jay is a high school Spanish teacher, and as he was giving me a ride home tonight, he told me that all the language classes at his school were celebrating the last school day of 2013 with an international festival. Each class will prepare ethnic foods to share with the other classes. I said that I remembered the language classes at my high school doing something similar, but that since I took Latin, we never had a chance to take part; I guess Mr. Bachtold didn't think serving dormice would go over well.

But I do remember one year when he handed out Latin translations of Christmas songs and had us sing them in front of the other language classes. One of those songs was "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" ... and remarkably, I still remember the words! I think I do, anyway. To the best of my recollection, it went like this:

O, vigilate
Vagias ne
Semper ride
Admoneo te
Santa Claus venit ad oppidum

That last line doesn't scan very well. And the translation's a little wonky; the third line isn't "you'd better not pout," it's "always laugh." Still, not a bad effort, all things considered.
Tags: halcyon days of yore, music

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