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Author Topic: Learning Latin is like learning Klingon  (Read 1591 times)
Old Guard
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qaStaH nuq? toqDuj vImojchoH?

« on: 02 25, 2015, 09:34: PM »

Not that Latin and Klingon are very much alike, but if you want to learn either one of these languages it is hard to find anyone to speak to, to have a two way conversation. Because my son is going to secondary education I gather information about Latin, why it is still taught and how it is taught. To my surprise it turns out that most teachers of the classical languages Latin and classical Greek do not actually speak the language, although there must be thousands of these teachers (at least in the western world).

The reason is of course that despite their numbers in countries where these two languages are still part of the curriculum there are not enough of these teachers around to practice speaking it. It is so much easier for them to speak English, Dutch, Swedish, Spanish or whatever their native tongue is. 

I know, you can find spoken Latin on youtube, but most if not all of those are monologues, perhaps read from a paper or some device for actors and presenters. Even in the Vatican the current pope decided to use Italian instead of Latin as the official language.

What high school students learn is all the conjugations and declensions and use these as Lego bricks to translate texts. That is pretty much the way I first decrypted teres' story tlhoraQ puqloDpu' lut and subsequently wrote my own little story quv 'Iwchab je but with suffixes and prefixes, the Klingon way, a bit easier than conjugating and declensing (?).

To keep children interested in choosing classical languages it seems that the teachers can now join there own version of qepHom to bring their `dead` language to life.
Warrior Bard of the Ontological
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« Reply #1 on: 02 28, 2015, 09:48: PM »

My older brother was part of the last class to be able to take 4 years of Latin in High School in our town. When he went to college he was able to find Latin speakers among some of the older Priests at the cathedral, and even found that they got together for conversational Latin over tea. That however was many years ago, and few if any priests speak Latin like that.

I think somewhere in a box of records that I cleaned out of my mother's house was an old copy of Winnie Il Pooh, that had been my Brother's, that is a recording of A.A. Milne's Winnie the Pooh in Latin.

qoSagh qlIStIy
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