Latin graffiti has been daubed across several luxury houses in Cambridge amid suggestions locals are unhappy with the development.
The words "Loci Populum!" and "Locus in Domos" were painted in large letters across the front and sides of the houses in Water Street, in Chesterton, which cost more than £1.2million each.
The Latin phrases translate online as "local people" and "place of homes". Mary Beard, a Cambridge University professor of classics, told the BBC: "This is a bit hard to translate, but I think what they're trying to say is that a lovely place has been turned into houses."
Police said they were alerted to reports of criminal damage to four buildings on Tuesday morning and officers were investigating.
It comes after a self-styled ‘grammar vigilante’ revealed that he had spent years changing offending shop signs in the dead of night in Bristol.
Last night, residents in Cambridge said they believed the Latin graffiti "reflects the mood" of the area.
A 71-year-old retired biochemist, who lives in the city but asked not to be named, said: "The sentiment is perfectly correct but the act of execution is not what you want to see about.
The graffiti reflects a mood in the area about that particular development
Resident Paula Champion
"I would be very surprised if it wasn't done by a Cambridge-educated activist. I could think of a few people in Cambridge who would have both the knowledge of Latin and the sentiments and the will to do it."
Resident Paula Champion added: "Everyone passing thinks it's great... I think people think what's written is funny because it's on millionaires' houses - basically it's a comeuppance."
She added: "The graffiti reflects a mood in the area about that particular development. They are just massive houses and no one locally would be able to afford them."
Dr Charles Weiss, from Cambridge University's Faculty of Classics, translated the slogan as "a place for homes equals places for people". He believes it might be 'pidgin Latin', a modern take on the ancient language.
Other phrases daubed on to the buildings include "We [heart] our home" and the symbols for dollars, euros and Japanese yen, followed by the phrase "go away".
The six houses, which were built on the site of a pub, have gone on the market at a price of £1.25 million each.
"House prices are a massive problem in Cambridge," said Richard Taylor, a resident who has been "campaigning and commenting" on the development and related issues since it began.
The average house price in Cambridge is about £500,000 - at least 12 times the average salary for the area.
"We've got incredibly rich people living one street away from incredibly poor people," Mr Taylor said. "Clearly somebody is protesting against these houses."
A spokesman for the developer, HC Moss (Builders) Ltd, said: "We have been made aware of the incident of criminal damage at our Water Street development and are taking steps to remove the graffiti.
"This appears to be an isolated incident and it has been reported to the police who are investigating. We will be reviewing our current security measures at the location."