View Single Post
Old 2020-06-23, 15:09   #46
xilman's Avatar
May 2003
Down not across

3·3,529 Posts

Originally Posted by Nick View Post
Up until a few centuries ago, Latin was the international scholarly language.
But I doubt that the pronunciation used throughout the centuries was the same as in ancient Rome.
We have the Roman books and statues (which is how we know how to spell Caesar) but no recording of speech or music.
What we do have is the descendants of Latin words in many other languages, we have transliterations of Latin words into other languages and those of other languages into Latin.

For instance, the three-headed guardian of Hades, is called Cerberus in Latin. The original Greek began with a kappa, not a sigma. Another example is Caesar, which survives as Kaiser and Czar (or Tsar), again suggesting a hard consonantal c.

These are just two examples of many, chosen because they will be familiar to most modern readers.

You are quite right in that pronunciation changed. The c softened after e and I some centuries after the classical period.

Last fiddled with by xilman on 2020-06-23 at 15:10
xilman is offline   Reply With Quote