South Carolina flag

South Carolina State Motto

"Dum Spiro Spero" and "Animis Opibusque Parati"

These are two versions of the South Carolina state motto which both appear on the state seal and was adopted in 1776 when South Carolina declared their Independence.

Both South Carolina state mottos are Latin mottos and "Dum Spiro Spero" means in English "While I breathe, I hope" and "Animis Opibusque Parati" means " Prepared in Mind and Resources".

The South Carolina motto "Dum Spiro Spero" is thought to have been written by Marcus Tullius Cicero, one of the great Roman statesmen and philosophers.

North and South Carolina must be great Cicero fans as the North Carolina state motto "Esse Quam Videri" (To be rather than to seem) also originates from Cicero.

South Carolina State Nicknames

Whereas there is only one South Carolina motto, there exist a number of state nicknames for South Carolina:

"The Palmetto State"
This is the official South Carolina nickname. "The Palmetto State" refers to a tree, the sabal palmetto, which also happen to be the state tree, which again appears on the state flag.

The historical significance of Palmetto goes back to the Palmetto log fort (built of palmetto logs), which under the leadership of Colonel William Moultrie, defended the Sullivan's Island against the British Fleet's firing canons.

South Carolina nickname: The Palmetto State - picture of palmetto tree

"Keystone of the South Atlantic Seaboard"
The shape of the state of South Carolina is the background for this South Carolina nickname.

"The Rice State"
The focus on rice production has earned South Carolina the nickname "The Rice State".

South Carolina nickname: The Rice State - picture of rice

"The Swamp State"
Like many of the other southern U.S. states, South Carolina has a big part of its landmass covered by swamps.

"The Sandlapper State"
This nickname is a reference to the poor people who lived on sand ridges around pine forests. It was said that these Sandlappers "lapped up sand to stay alive."

"The Iodine State"
In South Carolina a high amount of iodine is present in the vegetation.

South Carolina State Slogans

Whereas the two versions of the South Carolina motto intend to describe the national 'soul' of South Carolina, South Carolina state slogans focus especially on attracting tourists, and some are more traditional in nature than others:

"Smiling Faces. Beautiful Places"
This is the South Carolina state slogan used by the Official Tourism site of South Carolina:

"South Carolina: Remember the Civil War? We Didn't Actually Surrender"

"Palmetto Pride"

"Hey Y'all ... Watch This!"

"South Carolina, Hook up for Free at One of Our Lovely Trailer Parks"

"I'm from South Carolina and I Own a Shirt"

Some of these South Carolina funny state slogans can be bought on various souvenir t-shirts.

USA map with South Carolina highlighted