A MARI USQUE AD MARE (English: From Sea to Sea; French : D'un océan
à l'autre ; Latin : A Marī Ūsque Ad Mare ) is the Canadian national
motto . The phrase comes from the
Latin Vulgate translation of Psalm
72 :8 in the
"Et dominabitur a mari usque ad mare, et a flumine usque ad terminos
Bible : "He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and
from the river unto the ends of the earth").
* 1 History
* 2 Use
* 3 Proposed amendment
* 4 References
The first recorded use of the phrase to represent
Canada was by
George Monro Grant , who was
Sandford Fleming 's secretary and a
Presbyterian minister who used the phrase in his sermons. His
Michael Ignatieff suggests that Grant used the phrase
in a nation-building effort during the construction of the Canadian
Pacific Railway . The use of the word "dominion" in the verse
reflected the adoption of the name "Dominion of
Canada " for the new
The motto was first officially used in 1906 on the head of the mace
of the new
Legislative Assembly of Saskatchewan
Legislative Assembly of Saskatchewan . This phrase was
suggested for a national motto by
Joseph Pope , then-Under Secretary
of State, when the Canadian coat of arms was redesigned in 1921. Pope
was a member of the four-person committee appointed by the federal
government to redesign the coat of arms (the other members were Thomas
Mulvey, A.G. Doughty and Major-General W.G. Gwatkin). No motto had
been included in the original design. Major-General W.G. Gwatkin
proposed "In memoriam in spem" ("In memory, in hope") as a motto, but
Pope's proposal garnered more support. The draft design was approved
by Order in Council on April 21, 1921, and by the Royal Proclamation
of King George V on November 21, 1921.
As part of the Canadian coat of arms, the motto is used as a mark of
authority by various government agencies and representatives. It is
also present on all denominations of Canadian paper currency , and on
the cover of Canadian passports . On its own, it appears on all
federal government proclamations.
See also: Arctic policy of
In March 2007, the premiers of Canada's three territories called for
the amendment of the motto to reflect the vast geographic nature of
Canada's territory, as
Canada has coastlines on the Arctic , Atlantic
, and Pacific Oceans . Two suggestions for a new motto are A mari ad
mare ad mare (from sea to sea to sea) and A mari usque ad maria (from
the sea to the other seas). The expanded informal version of the
motto ("From Sea to Sea to Sea") is used in speeches and writings
about Canada, representing inclusiveness toward northern residents and
the growing significance of the Arctic in Canada's political and
economic future. A
Canwest Global -commissioned poll showed
proponents of amending the motto outnumbering opponents in the ratio
of three to one, with one-third of those polled neutral.
* ^ A B C Lamb, W. Kaye. "A Mari usque ad Mare". The Canadian
Encyclopedia. Historica Foundation of Canada. Retrieved 2008-11-21.
* ^ Ignatieff, Michael (2009). True Patriot Love. Toronto: Penguin
Canada . ISBN 0-670-06972-8 .
* ^ "Ceremonial and Canadian Symbols Promotion - The arms of Canada
Canadian Heritage . 2008-06-23. Retrieved 2008-11-21.
* ^ "Canadian Heritage: The arms of Canada". Canadian Heritage.
* ^ "Canadian Heritage: First "Canadian flags"". Canadian Heritage.
* ^ "Library of Parliament - Canadian Symbols at Parliament".
Parliament of Canada. Archived from the original on 2007-11-05.
* ^ "Check to Protect" (PDF). Bank of
Canada / Banque du
* ^ "Passport Canada: Features of the Passport". Passport Canada.
* ^ A B C Boswell, Randy (2009-05-10). "Ignatieff supports changing
Canada\'s two-ocean motto". National Post. Archived from the original
on 2009-05-12. Retrieved 2009-06-27.
* ^ Andrew Chung (2007-10-28). "TheStar.com Ideas Time to
herald our northern coast?". Thestar.com. Archived from the original
on 13 October 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-21.
* ^ Deveau, Scott (2006-09-03). "From sea to sea to sea".
Theglobeandmail.com. Retrieved 2008-11-21.
CBC News (2006-03-10). "\'To sea\' or not \'to sea\': that is
the question". Cbc.ca. Retrieved 200