Talk:Italic languages

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Italic peoples[edit]

I've seen the peoples speaking Italic languages being referred to as Italic peoples. I still don't know much about these peoples besides the Romans, though. Gringo300 11:00, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)


I've been studying Latin for several years now.

Has anyone on here studied the other Italic languages?

They're rather scarcely attested afaik. There just isn't enough corpus left for a thorough understanding of these languages. 惑乱 Wakuran (talk) 13:17, 21 February 2009 (UTC)

Relation between [Romance_languages] and [Italic_languages]?

Acconding to the entry on romance languages, it's a subfamily of italic language, but the italic language page thosen't mention them. Which one is right?

Yes, they are mentioned:
As Rome extended its political dominion over the whole of the Italian peninsula, so too did Latin become dominant over the other Italic languages, which ceased to be spoken perhaps sometime in the 1st century AD. From so-called Vulgar Latin the Romance languages emerged. bogdan ʤjuʃkə | Talk 16:12, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The page presents Italo-Celtic as a fact when actually it's more of a hypothesis (and though I'm no expert, I don't think it's a particularly popular hypothesis any more.) Seems like it should hedge that a bit or something.Excalibre 06:53, 7 March 2006 (UTC)

The hierarchy[edit]

Why, in the infobox, is Romance shown as a sibling of Latino-Faliscan when the Romance languages are descendants of Latin, itself a descendant of Latino-Faliscan? —Largo Plazo (talk) 14:03, 30 August 2008 (UTC)

Extinct? really?[edit]

I'm tired of everyone saying latin is a dead language. It is the language of science, medicine and law. A pre-cursor to so many languages, an understanding of latin will give ANYONE an advantage ANYWHERE language skills are needed. I submit that we use a better word than extinct. Just because a language is not spoken now-adays does not mean it is dead. (talk) 01:31, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

That is the definition of the expression "dead language" so, yes, it does mean that, despite your perfectly true observations. —Largo Plazo (talk) 18:58, 1 June 2009 (UTC)
I would like to see a person speaking Latin with correct pronunciation. Dude, Latin is dead! Language of science? Replaceable. Languages are living and developing over time. This is fairly natural. Why do you learn a dead root language to understand other languages better? Latin does not help you as much as you think. In my country, we have to choose between learning French or Latin at school and the tendency for Latin is declining. Later you can also take Italian. Now guess what! The students having taken Latin have more problems with learning Italian despite of the similar vocabulary. There are too many false friends because Latin is dead and hasn't changed much. However, French and Italian share more true friends and grammar because they have developed together and dropped declination. Besides, French is more useful nowadays.-- (talk) 21:22, 4 April 2013 (UTC)
With all due respect, Latin is for all intents and purposes a dead language. Even the Pope's 'Latinist', who translates official documents for the Vatican (the only state where it is still officially used, though Italian is far more common even there), said back in 2007 that its use within the Catholic church has effectively passed the point of no return: young priests are no longer learning it, and even cardinals now often request translations into something they can understand. There are certainly people who can still speak it (so in that sense it isn't completely dead), but it must be hard for them to find anyone else to converse with. As for the statement that Latin is 'the language of science, medicine and law', I'm afraid it's a century or two out of date. Of course, set Latin phrases are used in all three disciplines, but the vast majority of scientists, physicians and lawyers use them merely by rote - they don't know the underlying grammar, and couldn't produce a new Latin phrase on the basis of an existing one (as most of their 17th-century predecessors still could). An English-speaking lawyer who says 'in camera' knows it means 'behind closed doors', but probably couldn't translate it literally ('in a chamber') - and a French-speaking lawyer would simply say 'à huis clos', using a now obsolete French word for 'doors'. In short, Latin is not 'the language of law'. As for medicine, my mother was a nurse and remembered that 'nil per os' meant 'nothing by mouth' when patients were not allowed to eat or drink anything before surgery or a blood test - but the American Medical Association has now decreed that this phrase or its abbreviation 'NPO' must not be used, and that 'nothing by mouth' should be used instead. In other words, Latin is not 'the language of medicine' either - if anything, Greek is used more often ('arthritis', 'cardiology', 'diarrhoea'). For that matter, my mother grew up as an Irish Catholic and still knew all her prayers in Latin, as well as what they meant - not because she understood Latin, but simply because she'd had it all drummed into her as a child. She certainly couldn't help me with my Latin lessons at school. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:39, 10 July 2017 (UTC)
By the way, I've never bought the argument that Latin gives English-speakers a unique insight into other languages. I'm an English-speaking hyperpolyglot, and I did have Latin lessons at school; but I could just as easily have learned the Latin-based vocabulary and system of verb endings by studying Spanish, Portuguese, Italian or French, and the principle of noun and adjective declension ('case endings') by studying German, Russian or Modern Greek - languages that are still actively spoken by many millions of people. Latin has no other unique advantages for English-speakers, if only because most Latin literature worth reading has already been competently translated into English. Irish people already have the advantage of compulsory Irish lessons at school, which introduce them to the idea of noun and adjective cases. As far as I'm concerned Latin only survived in our schools from force of habit, and a sense that it was good for school discipline to make children learn something difficult and, in today's world, largely useless!
Quod erat demonstrandum? (talk) 17:01, 10 July 2017 (UTC)

Dead or Alive - the case of Friulian[edit]

The article on Friulian says it is an Italic language. However, the article on Itlaic languages lists the romance languages and "extinct languages". Friulian is not a Romance language, so logic would make one reason that it must be included under the reference to extinct languages. However, Friulian is alive and kicking and has a thriving community on the Wikipedia! --Rui ''Gabriel'' Correia (talk) 18:35, 13 April 2010 (UTC)

FYI general: someone changed the Friulian article to make it a Romance language. Nice catch Correia, you ought to do more on WP.Dave (talk) 02:10, 28 July 2010 (UTC)


Is there any non-Romance Italic language still alive? Kanzler31 (talk) 06:18, 5 December 2010 (UTC)

No. --Taivo (talk) 06:32, 5 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes. See Griko language (talk) 00:55, 26 August 2012 (UTC)
The anonymous IP obviously doesn't have a clue about what he is saying since "Griko" is a dialect of Greek and not an Italic language at all. --Taivo (talk) 06:23, 26 August 2012 (UTC)

Sicel and Oenotrian[edit]

The list is incomplete: Sicel is attested in inscripitions and mentioned even by Varro in his De Lingua Latina: it belonged in the Latino-Faliscan group. Oenotrians too were possibly a Latino-Falsican speaking people.Aldrasto11 (talk) 12:45, 4 February 2012 (UTC)

IIRC, Rix also mentions that a Latino-Faliscan dialect was originally spoken in the town of Caere, besides Etruscan, and I seem to recall that Auruncan, the dialect of the Latin tribe of the Aurunci, attested in the Garigliano Bowl, is sometimes considered a separate language or variety. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 13:36, 10 August 2016 (UTC)

It seems there is not enough changes from PIE, because applying those rules one can't convert PIE *h₂ŕ̥ḱtos to latin ursus. Only arktos has appeared: #HRC → #aRC91.76.135.242 (talk) 16:42, 20 March 2013 (UTC)

Latin ursus is an unsolved problem. Rix's law predicts **ar-, that's true. The s is probably regular, see Thorn cluster. --Florian Blaschke (talk) 13:36, 10 August 2016 (UTC)

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The caption for the coloured diagram of languages in Italy refers to 'Raetian', but the diagram itself refers to 'Raetic'. I don't know which is correct, but the same term should surely be used in both cases. (talk) 15:21, 10 July 2017 (UTC)