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What’s the German equivalent of the following Latin phrase:

Non ducor, duco. – I am not led; I lead.

Conditions:

  1. It does not have to carry the same literal meaning.

  2. It should carry the same badass vibe associated with the original Latin saying.

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    I did not know that Latin phrases could carry a 'badass vibe'. Somehow, my Latin teachers hid this from me over nine years of Latin at school. So, thank you for enlightening me now! Better late than never. – Christian Geiselmann May 20 '17 at 15:55
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    After 10 minutes of trying to find good German phrases... hm... could you add some context, e.g. a typical situation where you would use this? – Christian Geiselmann May 20 '17 at 16:05
  • I'm not sure, whether there is a common agreement of the conotation and even the pure meaning leaves room for interpretation. The most general counterpiece in my opinion is __Ich_ bin hier der Chef/bestimme, wo es lang geht – guidot Jul 25 '17 at 13:44
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You want a snappy phrase. The latin "ducor/duco" leads you to the impression you had to use first person, passive voice and indicative which is all super-lame in German.

For those reasons German mottos are given in impersonal imperative usually.

Nicht führen lassen, führen!

That's a snappy phrase a soccer trainer or other motivational coach would use.

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German expression has it the other way round:

Ich mache nicht, ich lasse machen

This might at first look a bit different from the original Latin, but means the same in today's working society.

  • Thank you very much! Yeah, it is pretty different from the original Latin, but this works anyway. I've accepted @Janka's answer because, well, it kinda sounds more "badass" (a crudely defined term, I agree). Once again, I really appreciate this answer (I upvoted ^_^) and I hope to bump into more of your answers in the future. Cheers! – paracetamol May 21 '17 at 8:17
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It is a motto of São Paulo (Brazil), in Wikipedia article it has translation "Ich werde nicht geführt, ich führe"

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    To account for the "badass vibe", it should read Man führt mich nicht, ich führe! That's a real badass babe we have then. – Janka May 20 '17 at 17:18
  • @Janka yes it sounds better – schmidt9 May 20 '17 at 17:33

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