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The Benefits of Studying Latin. Dead But Not Forgotten

Category : Blog

Latin is considered to be a dead language, meaning no one talks it anymore on everyday basis, the same as Sanskrit and Old Greek. It is considered to be one of the oldest languages on Earth that occurred in the middle of 2000 BC. An interesting fact is that it is the official language of the Holy See, Vatican City and Sovereign Military Order of Malta. Though Latin got out of use in everyday life, it has left great linguistic heritage for the modern world. Let’s take a closer look at the impact of Latin on our world and what are the advantages of studying it.

Progenitor of European Languages

It is proved that Indo-European languages, such as British English, German, Norwegian, Swedish, French, Italian, etc., are the derivatives of one common ancestor – Latin. Thus, they all have some common characteristics. A lot of European languages retained footprints of this old language and it is easy to identify them. Have a look at this:

Latin German English
Frater Bruder Brother
Mater Mutter Mother
Mors Mord Murd
Est Ist Is

Concluding all of the above, Latin is very helpful in studying European languages. Learning the basic language will ease understanding of other ones. Due to Latin they have a lot in common in syntax and vocabulary. Analyzing and comparing Latin for example to French or English will help in storing lexis and guessing the meaning of the words from a foreign language that came from Latin. It will increase learning abilities in school, hence, interest in the subject.

Latin for Professionals

This ancient language still plays a major part in many professions. A lot of terms and professional vocabulary are borrowed from Latin. For instance, knowledge of Latin is essential for a biologist or a physician. International zoological and botanical taxonomy is officially in Latin, which is very practical: a German biologist may not know what his British colleague calls a gray-bellied night monkey but he knows its Latin equivalent Aotus lemurinus. So the language barrier falls and they both know that they are talking about the same monkey due to using Latin. Medicine traditionally also uses Latin for the same purpose. Lawyers use Latin as a part of professional vocabulary as well. Collocations such as alter ego, de facto, de jure, persona non grata and many others are being used not only in writing collage essays, documents or in court but in our everyday language as well.

If you are a student dreaming of becoming a historian or archeologist you should seriously consider learning Latin because many ancient manuscripts, books and wall inscriptions are written in this old language. It is an absolute necessity for decoding archaic puzzles and ciphers. Latin enriches ordinary vocabulary and adds charm to the speech. Studying Latin is compulsory in many universities. Moreover, this special knowledge will make your resume stand out when applying for a job. Plus, using Latin words and phrases will definitely help in writing a good essay and making it memorable.

Summing up, modern world still uses Latin for running its business and for prestige. It is an easy, logical and helpful language to learn. It can be as an international language for terminology in different aspects of life. No matter a doctor, advanced writer, scientist, postman or economist – Latin is useful and entertaining for everyone. Just imagine how great it will be to walk around Rome, read the engravings on monuments, fountains and cathedrals and clearly understand the meaning; massages that old masters like Michelangelo, Santi, Bernini and Ligorio had left to us.