Aquila Non Capit Muscas


A stained glass window in a mausoleum in the Lakewood Cemetery at Minneapolis, Minnesota, displays a yellow dragon with wings spread on a ruby red background, over the motto, AQUILA NON CAPIT MUSCAS.

The translation of the Latin motto to English is “The eagle does not catch flies” or “The eagle does not hunt flies“.  Most likely this is a family crest.  I am not quite sure, however, why an eagle is not depicted in the crest instead of a dragon.  Also, the meaning is open to interpretation.  Could it mean, “Don’t sweat the small stuff“?

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15 Responses to Aquila Non Capit Muscas

  1. Christopher Weston Mathews says:

    It is a family crest, that of the Weston family. One of the oldest surnames dating as far back as the 1200’s A.D. Variations of the name are common as per the amount of illiteracy at the time. If you were a Weston you were from one of the western parts of the country of Scotland; Easton from the east, Sutton from the south, or Norton from the north.

  2. Hunter Drake says:

    This is both the crest and motto of the Drake Family.

  3. Patricia Savanella says:

    I purchased a large silver urn at an estate sale, it has both the latin inscription, and the dragon. The urn is quite large, about 22 inches tall and about 9 inches wide

  4. Craig H says:

    I prefer this translation: A noble person does not give overmuch time to insignificant issues.

  5. Tara Drake says:

    I’m doing family research. This is the Drake family crest and motto. Sometimes it was shown with a hand and BattleAxe above it.

  6. lancef1966 says:

    I use it myself sometimes to decline eating food far beneath my station. As in Friend: “Hey Lance, wan’t a bite of deep-fried twinkie?” Me: “Aquila non capit moscas”

  7. Crystal Bielawski says:

    My maiden name is Drake and our family crest looks the same as this and has same phrase. The name Drake originally means Dragon. So maybe this was for thw last name Drake and why it has the dragon.

  8. Walt says:

    It is also the Motto of one of my family surnames the Wesson and on the family Crest.Used by many owned by none.

  9. Gretchen Maureen Metz says:

    My great grandmother was a Lambert and she had a carved crystal paperweight (?) that had this motto engraved in it. My research shows the Lamberts were in France and the British Isles.

  10. corrinstrong says:

    It also appears on what is claimed to be the Wadsworth Family crest. I suppose more than one family adopted it.

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