Chess Terms
Gens Una Sumus

Gens Una Sumus

"Gens una sumus" may sound like a spell to increase your rating, but (unfortunately) it is not. However, it does have a cool meaning!

Here's what you need to know about "gens una sumus:"


What Is "Gens Una Sumus"

"Gens una sumus" is a Latin expression that serves as FIDE's motto. According to FIDE, the phrase translates to "we are one family." FIDE first used the motto in print in 1952. However, evidence indicates that the international federation had a similar vision about chess as early as 1945. In that year, an invitation to the first FIDE Congress of the post-war period stated:

"However the future development of FIDE may be: no Chessfriend should forget, that we are One Nation, that the silent language of Chess is the only one, understood by the Adepts of the Art all over the world, and that Chess ought to become a powerful instrument towards the International Understanding and Peace."
- Alexander Rueb, 1945 FIDE Congress invitation.

Below, a 1972 official FIDE certificate features the "gens una sumus" motto.

gens una sumus fide motto meaning
An official FIDE certificate containing the "gens una sumus" motto. Photo: Peter Wagner, CC.

Conclusion

You now know what "gens una sumus" means and why FIDE adopted it as their motto. Go to our Play page and practice the universal language of chess with people from all over the world!