posted on Mar, 24 2006 @ 10:05 AM
French was the international language for a long time because France was a powerful and influential country in international politics. The kings of
england spoke french because they were french and later were simply descended from the french and had lots of deals with them.
English has long been a language of trade. German has long been the langauge of engineering also. For a while Japanese was important for that.
Now, because of Britain, Canada, Australia, America, and perhaps even South Africa, English is simply, practically by default, the language of
international diplomacy, and of course trade.
France isn't in much of a position to do anything, its not as if someone decides these things. German was the language for engineering because there
was so much spectacular engineering work done by germans, and written about in german, such that an englischer wanting to learn about the science had
to learn german to read the papers. There's nothing like that going on with french now, in any sphere. Also, France is presenting itself as a
highly nationalist and anti-globalist nation, therefore, its not going to be the mover and shaker in global trade and global politics, so of course
its going to decline.