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Old 2020-02-27, 13:59   #12
Dr Sardonicus
 
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Originally Posted by xilman View Post
The clue is in the name, if you know your Latin or can recognize words derived from it.
<snip>
And when Jerome did the translation around the Year 400, the appellation was pertinent.

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I have already pointed you to the Latin Wikipedia site. There are numerous other spoken Latin resources on the net, which is why the Finnish radio station ceased its brodcasts. Typing "spoken latin resources" into a search engine will find them for you.
And I should want to do this because...?
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Old 2020-02-27, 15:03   #13
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And when Jerome did the translation around the Year 400, the appellation was pertinent.


And I should want to do this because...?
You appear to doubt the claim that Latin is stillin common use.
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Old 2020-02-27, 16:30   #14
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You appear to doubt the claim that Latin is stillin [sic] common use.
I'll believe it is "in common use" in the sense it was in the time of Saint Jerome if you can show me a community of native speakers. Until then, hopes for a Latin revival fall under the heading

Et expecto resurrectionem mortuorum, et vitam venturi saeculi.
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Old 2020-02-27, 17:24   #15
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You appear to doubt the claim that Latin is stillin common use.
So is Klingon, for the same reasons.
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Old 2020-02-28, 02:35   #16
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The clue is in the name, if you know your Latin or can recognize words derived from it.
Indeed, I considered writing "diverged further and further from vulgar Latin" but decided it would add more confusion (for most) than the small added clarity for those who would already understand.
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Old 2020-02-28, 02:47   #17
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Latin, complete with neologisms, is still in daily use in the upper heirarchies of the Roman Catholic church, especially in the Vatican.
I read an interesting undergraduate thesis some years ago that did stratified sampling in Vatican City to address precisely that. You might be interested; I was able to find it online:
Latin Allocution and the Applications and Usage of Latin as a Modern Language by the Vatican City State, Michael Connaughton, 2003.
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Old 2020-02-28, 10:40   #18
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I read an interesting undergraduate thesis some years ago that did stratified sampling in Vatican City to address precisely that. You might be interested; I was able to find it online:
Latin Allocution and the Applications and Usage of Latin as a Modern Language by the Vatican City State, Michael Connaughton, 2003.
What a wonderful find! Thank you for pointing me to it.

I love a response in one interview:

I mean degrees in Harvard and Oxford and Cambridge andβ€”that used to be all Latin. You used to have Latin Composition, Greek Composition to get into Oxford, Cambridge.

As noted above, I escaped that requirement by only a few years.
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Old 2020-02-28, 15:34   #19
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Old 2020-02-28, 17:12   #20
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One reason often given for the prospects of a Latin revival being dim is, Latin grammar is complicated. And so it seems. I have heard people complain about grammar being difficult, and they were complaining about English grammar. As my education progressed, I developed the attitude that, if someone thought English grammar was complicated, I knew a sure cure: German grammar!

German is an "inflected" language, with declensions for four grammatical cases, three grammatical genders, singular and plural. And of course, tenses. Mark Twain, in The Awful German Language, complained that "It is as bad as Latin." But Latin has more grammatical cases than German. Never mind number and the tenses...

This got me to thinking: Why is it that older languages seem to have more complicated grammar than newer ones? A bit of searching on line turned up discussions on this topic.

One thing I failed to find was any mention of the fact that a lot of older languages arose in pre-literate ages. Before written language was invented, people were, as one of my uncles liked to say, "just as smart and just as capable as we are today." But their living circumstances, and the fact the language was not written, in my opinion, caused them to think differently than we do today. Perhaps the kind of distinctions they needed to make were different than the kinds that are most useful to us today. And whether a language is written down surely influences its structure.

I recall one of James Burke's PBS series (The Day the Universe Changed, "A Matter of Fact"). He described one of the consequences of the printing press by saying it "took away our memories." Before things were written down, he said, people remembered things by making series of unlikely associations. It is perhaps possible that languages which arose before writing contained features which reflected this way of remembering.
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Old 2020-02-28, 17:41   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
One reason often given for the prospects of a Latin revival being dim is, Latin grammar is complicated. And so it seems. I have heard people complain about grammar being difficult, and they were complaining about English grammar. As my education progressed, I developed the attitude that, if someone thought English grammar was complicated, I knew a sure cure: German grammar!

German is an "inflected" language, with declensions for four grammatical cases, three grammatical genders, singular and plural. And of course, tenses. Mark Twain, in The Awful German Language, complained that "It is as bad as Latin." But Latin has more grammatical cases than German. Never mind number and the tenses...

This got me to thinking: Why is it that older languages seem to have more complicated grammar than newer ones? A bit of searching on line turned up discussions on this topic.
Colonization, whether military or cultural, is an important influence. Pidgins and creoles are invariably simpler than their parent languages. Afrikaans is essentially Dutch with a greatly simplified grammar and augmented vocabulary. Middle English is simplified Old English with a very extensive admixture of Norman French. We see the same thing happening today where English is a second language to people who need to communicate with English speakers who can't speak Hindi, or Spanish, or whatever.

The evolutionary trend is clear: relatively isolated languages tend to die out because no-one wants to learn them. Ubiquitous languages thrive (for a millennium or two) because everyone wants to use them to speak to others. Grammatical simplification makes the learning process, well, simpler.
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Old 2020-02-28, 17:47   #22
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Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
German is an "inflected" language, with declensions for four grammatical cases, three grammatical genders, singular and plural. And of course, tenses. Mark Twain, in The Awful German Language, complained that "It is as bad as Latin." But Latin has more grammatical cases than German. Never mind number and the tenses...
Be thankful that there are only singular and plural. A good many languages also have the dual, as in Classical Greek and Middle Egyptian.

A few fossilised remnants still exist in English, an appendix to our grammar if you will. Consider the words both/either/neither and the distinction between comparative and superlative as in better/best.

Last fiddled with by ewmayer on 2020-02-28 at 19:28 Reason: Fixed mangled close-quote
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