Latin, and why no language can forever be number 1

Latin, and why no language can forever be number 1

The Latin language nowadays can be found in medicine, science, linguistics, mathematics, geography, pretty much any sphere of human knowledge. But a fact is a fact: Latin is dead.


When does a language die? When people stop speaking it. It does not matter what we try to preserve a language: if its speakers do not speak it anymore, it is doomed to disappear.

Related article: How Many Languages Are There In The World?

Dominant language

Latin was no exception, even though it was the dominant language in Europe during the times of the Roman Empire.

It kept a dominant position in Europe as late as the 17th century, when it was gradually replaced by French. Documents and books were written in Latin, members of the nobility and clergy were obligated to speak Latin. It influenced basically all European languages (such as French, Spanish, Italian) in terms of vocabulary and some were even influenced in their grammar (Polish, for example).

Dynamic place

The world of language is a dynamic place, and languages, just as people, sooner or later die. No language has immunity to that process.

World language

We currently see English as being the major world language, but how long will that last? There are a number of candidates for the throne, some of which include: Chinese (a major world power, economy and huge population), French (due to French-speaking Africa), Spanish (Spanish is, in fact, the second-most spoken language in the world) or perhaps Hindi and Arabic (due to their population boom)?

It is an interesting and open question, the answer to which we will see perhaps sooner than we think.


Where is Latin used?

Latin is used in medicine, science, linguistics, mathematics, geography.

Why is Latin called dead? 

Because people stopped speaking Latin.

What languages replaced Latin?

Latin was replaced by French in the 17th century.

What is the major language now?

English is a major language now.

Why do languages die?

The world is a dynamic place and that is why it requires changes.

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