Latin is among the family of Indo-European languages that casts a large shadow of influence over our native tongue and the Romance languages. It is the preferred vernacular of law and medicine. It owes it’s popularity to the success of both the Roman Empire before Christianity and the Holy Roman Empire after the fall of Rome. Latin was the English of it’s day: in order to do commerce with Rome effectively, knowledge of Latin was essential. During the early part of the millenium and into the middle ages Latin was the only common mode of expression for Western Europe with it’s plethora of alphabets and languages. While the use of Latin has faded, it is still an important part of learning to make sense of the hodge podge of vocabulary that makes up modern English. It is also a great basis for the Romance languages and hosts a wide catalog of learned and scholarly works, poetry, literature, myth and history. Latina est gaudium et utilis.
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Hi Payton, I am taking Latin right now in school. So far I learned that 50% of the English language came from Latin. Vale, which is goodbye in Latin. -Shea