Can you help? If so email us at [email protected] or leave your answer in the comment box below.
Emma Gillon replies: Nisi means "unless, if not or without", Dominus means "lord" or "master" and frustra means "in vain" or "useless."
It can be variuosly translated as:
Without the Lord, everything is in vain
Except the Lord in Vain
He that acts without the Lord Acts in vain
if not the master, in vain
Without God, we labor in vain
Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it
It is a heraldic contraction of a verse from the 127th Psalm:-
'Except the Lord build the house
They labour in vain that build it:
Except the Lord keep the city
The watchman waketh but in vain.'
It has been the motto of Edinburgh since 1647. It is also one of the mottoes of the King's Own scottish Borderers regiment.
Is there a burning question about Edinburgh or life in the Capital which you want answered?
Maybe you have been searching endlessly for the right place to buy a special present or an unusual cookery ingredient. Perhaps you would love to trace an old school friend you lost touch with years ago, or maybe you have always been intrigued to know the history behind a local landmark.
If you would like to take part simply click here to email us at [email protected] or leave a comment below.