Just so you know where I'm coming from, my area of study is linguistics. One of my interests, more like a passion really, is in language endagerment.Scribo wrote:Well that's neither here nor there. If we were being so utilitarian why would bother with extraneous languages anyway?
Speaking a language with only a couple hundred fluent speakers who are found only in an isolated portion of the country probably won't get you a job or improve your position in life. Heck, you might get looked down for speaking it. But I'm not going to say that these languages should be abandoned just because they're 'useless' in the wider society. I'm opposed to utilitarian arguments like these.
When I say that I want to speak a language that has speakers, it's because I feel lonely learning a language that is primarily connected with the past. I like meeting people from different countries and different backgrounds. Travelling around has made me more aware of this.
It's ironic that I can read Homeric Greek but I don't appreciate it!Scribo wrote: I learnt AG and Latin due to my overwhelming interest in the ancient world and my chosen courses of study. I'm all about the context, it would be inconceivable for me to ever look at Homer in English and be satisfied, after all don't you know how weird his language actually is? When we're discussing whether or not such a particle is a Luwian loan word or whether such a phrase is a clumsy rendering of an Akkadian original or even reading a Hellenistic novel and laughing at the slight change of an old Homeric phrasing Greek is obviously important.
I'd be satisfied with reading Homer in translation in return for those years spent learning Greek, because Homer doesn't interest me to the extent that say, Sartre does. I'm one of those people who's more interested in existentialism than the debt that Greek owes to the Ancient Near East. That's not to say I'm not interested in Greek at all, but I've realised that I'm not as interested as I first thought. It's why I changed from Classics to linguistics.
Yes well, French is for next year in university.Scribo wrote: No learning is in vain. You want Italian or French? well go learn it in the safe knowledge that having learnt Latin your acquisition of them will be somewhat faster and perhaps even more pleasant.