Who Is Jerome? Translations and Quotes

In this article, we will explore information regarding the translations, historical writings, and quotes of Saint Jerome , a man who gained acclaim from the Roman Catholic Church for translating the Bible into a Latin version.


Knowing only some Hebrew was not enough for Saint Jerome when he began his translation project, so he decided to relocate to Jerusalem to gain a better understanding of the language. He stayed in a monastery in Bethlehem, which was funded by a well-off Roman aristocrat named Paula. This is where he completed his translation.

Jerome started in 382 by making correction on the Latin language version of the New Testament that already existed. By 390, he used the Hebrew Bible and its previously translated portions from a Septuagint Greek version. All of this was completed by 405. The next 15 yeas of his life until his death , Jerome would create a handful of commentaries on Scripture (including the Old and New Testament) , giving explanations for some of the choices within his translation.

Historical Writings

Jerome also tended to historical writing with one of his earliest attempts being “Chronicle” , also known as “Chronicon” or “Temporum liber.” Other works in this kind of writing include the Vita Pauli monachi (the stuff of legends linked to Egyptian monastic tradition) and the Vita Hilarionis (biography of Epiphanius).

To get a better picture of Jerome, why not explore some of his quotes and phrases:

Quotes of Saint Jerome

“Act as if the maxim of your action were to become through your will a be general natural law”
“Being over seventy is like being engaged in a war. All our friends are going or gone and we survive amongst the dead and the dying as on a battlefield”
“Catch, then, O catch the transient hour; Improve each moment as it flies! “

 “A fat stomach never breeds fine thoughts”
“A friend is long sought, hardly found, and with difficulty kept”

“The scars of others should teach us caution”
“They talk like angels but they live like men”

“Beauty when unadorned is adorned the most”

“Keep doing some kind of work, that the devil may always find you employed”
“Let your daughter have first of all the book of Psalms for holiness of heart, and be instructed in the Proverbs of Solomon for her godly life”

 “What good is speed if the brain has oozed out on the way”
“Why do you not practice what you preach”

“Be at peace with your own soul, then heaven and earth will be at peace with you”
“Be ever engaged, so that whenever the devil calls he may find you occupied”

“Marriage is good for those who are afraid to sleep alone at night”
“Slow rises worth by poverty depressed”

“Good, better, best. Never let it rest. ‘Til your good is better and your better is best”
“Haste is of the Devil”

“Action without a name, a “who” attached to it, is meaningless”
“The face is the mirror of the mind, and eyes without speaking confess the secrets of the heart”
“The friendship that can cease has never been real”

“True friendship ought never to conceal what it thinks”
“Virginity can be lost by a thought”