fortis Fortuna adiuvat

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Alternative forms[edit]

  • fortēs Fortūna adiuvat (Pliny Epistles 6 16)
  • audentīs Fortūna iuvat (Virgil Aeneid 10 284)
  • audentēs deus epse iuvat (Ovid Metamorphoses 10 586)


Literally "(the) strong (ones), Fortune helps." From Terence's comedy play Phormio, line 203. Cited by Cicero in the 1st century BCE as a vetus prōverbium (old proverb).


  • (Classical) IPA(key): /ˈfor.tiːs forˈtuː.na ˈad.ju.wat/, [ˈfɔr.t̪iːs fɔrˈt̪uː.na ˈad̪.jʊ.wat̪]
  • (Ecclesiastical) IPA(key): /ˈfor.tis forˈ ˈad.ju.vat/, [ˈfɔr.t̪is fɔrˈt̪uː.na ˈad̪.ju.vat̪]


fortīs Fortūna adiuvat

  1. fortune favors the bold

Usage notes[edit]

Often misquoted in English texts as fortēs Fortūna adiuvat, which uses the accusative plural ending -ēs instead of the "Republican" accusative ending -īs. Although grammatically correct, the form ending in -ēs is not the one used in Terence's play.


  • English: fortune favors the bold (calque)