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Did the Protestants (try to) Kill Latin?

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posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:18 PM
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How many times have you heard it?

Latin is a dead language

Yes,,, of course, many never use the language today, unless it happens to be terms in legal documents or the ivied halls of higher learning. Which makes me think it really isn't so dead after all, just more hidden from most people, perhaps on purpose.

This got me wondering just how it all came to be so 'dead'.

It'd be silly to discount the fact that the Protestant churches translated the bible into English, German and what have you, so that they could bring the Word to the common folk like me, but why call Latin a dead language? Was it an attempt to wipe the Latin biblical text from the minds of their flocks and further distance themselves from the Roman Catholic bible?

Just what differences exist between the Protestant and Catholic texts?

As a side note, no-one's saying Greek is a dead language and they have their own Orthodox Christianity.

Over the millenia, is language being used to seperate the Christian faiths, particularly in the case of Latin texts?
edit on 12/5/12 by masqua because: added to title




posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:27 PM
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The term "dead language" really means that nobody speaks it as their native language, the one they learn from their parents.
This was true about Latin even in 1500.

Greek, on the other hand is still being spoken as a native tongue.

Although it could be argued that the Greek being spoken today is not the same as the New Testament version, but has evolved, taking the original name with it.
In the same way, the English language spoken by the author of Beowulf is dead, in a sense, because nobody speaks it in that form. But as it evolved, the language took the name "English" with it.
So part of the difference with Latin is that it evolved into a number of tongues- French, Italian, Spanish, Roumanian- and none of them kept the name "Latin". So "Latin" only means the original form, and the language in that form is no longer spoken, and is therefore "dead".


edit on 12-5-2012 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:30 PM
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reply to post by masqua
 


latin isnt dead most latin words are still used in English today. MANU as it means by hand manufactoring manuscript etc. bi is another bicycle bi means twice or two or both as in bi annual twice a year biconcave means both sides etc

The catholic church speaks latin as well come to think of it. The bible is written in latin and still spoken by the pope
edit on 12-5-2012 by minor007 because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:31 PM
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It certainly isn't dead in legalese either.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:33 PM
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Well the Holy See still publishes it's documents mostly in Latin, so it's not entirely dead.

Also nearly all Western government buildings or paraphernalia have Latin phrases upon them.
Plus many of our common phrases are either Latin or Latin-derived.

Oh and in some senses, our language we speak today is mostly evolved Latin roots with Germanic, Norse, etc included. Our prefixes and suffixes often times show clear links to Latin.

I say "Etc" a lot, and that is Latin technically, "et cetera" which means in English "and other things", or "and so forth".

For example did you check the "Obituary" today in the paper? "Obiit" is Latin for "one died", whereas the suffix "ary" means "a person who, a place where, a thing which, or pertaining to; connected with; having the character of".

We could go on all day long about how we actually still speak a lot of Latin without even knowing it.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:36 PM
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PS.
I learned Latin at school, to the level of "A-level G.C.E."
Until recently, Latin teaching used to be the norm in British schools.
So the language has certainly not been hidden, but today people may be less interested in learning it.



edit on 12-5-2012 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:39 PM
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Why is dropping the Latin text an issue within the Vatican itself?



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:42 PM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI
PS.
I learned Latin at school, to the level of "A-level G.C.E."
Until recently, Latin teaching used to be the norm in British schools.
So the language has certainly not been hidden, but today people may be less interested in learning it.



edit on 12-5-2012 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)


I went to school in Texas and took 2 years of Latin language studies.

I am fairly certain it is still a normal course throughout the nation, albeit it has much competition from a dozen other major languages that are becoming quite prevalent in recent times, such as Russian, Chinese, Japanese, etc.

In a way I think that we are misplacing "Latin" in our curriculum. Right now it is considered a "foreign language" however it should be considered similar to "English" which is a required course all students must take. My perception is that if Latin were treated as a base course, than it would improve the students command of English significantly.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:43 PM
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reply to post by masqua
 

I don't know, but perhaps the penny has dropped that even their own people might be more willing to listen if they hear things in their own language.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:44 PM
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An old example of what I'm getting at:


The three non-sentences in the preceding paragraph exemplify what Trautman, a former scripture professor, finds typical of one of the most disturbing issues in the new missal translation facing English-speaking Catholics around the world: a lack of plain, everyday English grammar in liturgical prayers with which Catholics are supposed to express their worship of God.

In many cases, he said, even when U.S. bishops introduced amendments to the proposed English texts to correct blatantly ungrammatical usages, Rome has turned around and reinstated the bad grammar in order to follow the Latin text more literally.

Trautman has been an outspoken opponent of the more literal translation of the Latin texts decreed by 2001 Vatican norms. At the bishops’ meeting last June, after he strongly criticized language problems in one segment -- containing the texts of Masses and prayers for various intentions -- it barely received the two-thirds vote needed for approval.

ncronline.org...


I'm sure there's many many more.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:45 PM
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Originally posted by masqua
Why is dropping the Latin text an issue within the Vatican itself?


I wish i could help you out, because i really like James Dean. But i dont know the answer, latins such a beautiful language, my old man, my daddy, studied latin and ancient greek at A level, i bet he was fun at parties.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:47 PM
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Originally posted by masqua
Why is dropping the Latin text an issue within the Vatican itself?


Forgive the slight off topic bias of the article, but this section should aid in answering your question.


Latin was the exclusive language of the Catholic Church until the early 1960s, when the Second Vatican Council gave priests the option of conducting Mass in the vernacular. Since then, fewer and fewer members of the church hierarchy have mastered Latin. The Code of Canon Law technically says that priests must "understand Latin well," and most seminaries teach future priests at least basic reading chops. But in practice it's not a requirement for ordination. (It is required, however, if you want a degree in Canon Law, since official church documents have been written in Latin dating back centuries.)



The official versions of church documents like papal encyclicals are also written in Latin and then translated into other languages. Latin is used often enough that the Vatican has an entire office dedicated to preparing church documents in Latin, known as the Latin Language Department of the First Section of the Secretariat of State.


slate.com source



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:48 PM
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And do Americans know the schoolboy rhyme;
"Latin is a language, as dead as dead can be.
It killed the ancient Romans, and now it's killing me" ?



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 05:57 PM
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reply to post by muzzleflash
 


Ok, but:

How about another much older example:


The first hand-written English language Bible manuscripts were produced in the 1380's AD by John Wycliffe, an Oxford professor, scholar, and theologian. Wycliffe, (also spelled “Wycliff” & “Wyclif”), was well-known throughout Europe for his opposition to the teaching of the organized Church, which he believed to be contrary to the Bible. With the help of his followers, called the Lollards, and his assistant Purvey, and many other faithful scribes, Wycliffe produced dozens of English language manuscript copies of the scriptures. They were translated out of the Latin Vulgate, which was the only source text available to Wycliffe. The Pope was so infuriated by his teachings and his translation of the Bible into English, that 44 years after Wycliffe had died, he ordered the bones to be dug-up, crushed, and scattered in the river!

www.greatsite.com...


The battle between different translations of the Latin texts is old, old news.

So... is the expression 'Latin is a dead language' merely wishful thinking on the part of Protestants and, as you say, left to the 'more learned' members of our societies?

I can't help but get this notion that Latin, the undead language, is living on with the fringe highbrows, like some secret knowledge and is part and parcel of an intentional eradication everywhere but.
edit on 12/5/12 by masqua because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 06:02 PM
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It is interesting to me that Benedict if bringing back the Latin mass bit by bit. The center of worship is the cruse fix in the center. The rites and prayers and starting to be restored.

The guy is opening the vaults and even dressing like a Latin pope. He has restored excommunicated orders declared heretics for preserving the true catholic tradition.

This to me is a close issue since I am someone who values a Latin mass. There is no comparison with a Novus Ordos. The Novus Ordos mass is basically a protestant mass. If they did anything it was to make the catholic church celebrate a protestant mass.

The catholic and protestant churches have had LONG and harsh wars. Outright warfare. I imagine that as power shifted to trade and then to international commerce the war shifted. The battlefield became oddly enough more about the "spirituality" or validity of either system, whereas before it was a more politically oriented fight.

It would make sense then to try and destroy the very identity of your opponent. You would need to guilt him into shedding all his sacred traditions and become something as transient as what is popular at the moment.

Eventually the institution that best adapts to the change, but RETAINS its identity will win the "spiritual" battle.

Liturgical détente


Liturgical détente has led to the loss of the sense of the sacred. To realize this tragic event we must reflect on what the sense of the sacred really comprises. The sacred is a mystery. It heralds the presence here and now of the world above, the world of the divine, and it fills man with incomparable reverence.

The sacred reveals that the religious sphere is set apart, wonderfully superior and distinct from the rest of man's existence. But this apartness, far from precluding contact between the religious and natural spheres of man's existence, is actually a precondition for their fruitful intercommunion.

Sacredness is one of those ultimate data perceived in and by itself, unexplainable, indivisible, mysterious. Sacredness is a reality which does not exist solely outside man as a knower, but it invades and involves the whole man as a free person. The sacred seizes each man in his ontological, intellectual, psychological and historical developments. [Alice von Hildebrand, Introduction to a Philosophy of Religion, Chicago, Franciscan Herald Press, 1970, Chap. IV, pp. 32-39]




Hence these shrewd masters of sedition know that when her sacred forms go, religion will go also. Violate the lex orandi and you must inevitably destroy the lex credendi. That is why they rail against so many devotions as superstitions; [color=yelloe]why they propose so many alterations and changes, a tactic cleverly calculated to shake the foundations of the faith. We must never forget, then, that forms apparently indifferent in themselves become most important to us when we are used to using them to nurture our lives in holiness.

in the words of Newman, "Liturgical reformists must ever be aware of the following truth; Even in the least binding of sacred forms, it continually happens that a speculative improvement becomes a practical folly, and the wise are tripped up by their own illusions." [Newman, op. cit. pp. 78] Bishops would be wise to follow Newman's conclusions in this war on the sacred liturgy:

Therefore, when profane persons scoff at our forms, let us argue with ourselves thus - and it is an argument which all men, learned and unlearned, can enter into: "These forms, even were they of mere human origin (which learned men say is not the case, but even if they were), are at least of a spiritual and edifying character as the rites of Judaism. And yet Christ and his Apostles did not even suffer these latter to be irreverently treated or suddenly discarded. Much less may we suffer it in the case of our own; lest stripping off from us the badges of our profession, we forget that there is a faith to maintain and a world of sinners to be eschewed." [Newman, op. ct. pp. 78,79]



Fr. Vincent P. Miceli (1915-1992)
When he began to write, Vatican II had not yet taken place. Seminaries were still teeming, though soon they would be reduced to vacant buildings. Parochial Catholic schools were still full not aware of the drastic changes ahead that would plummet ecclesiastical discipline into a tailspin from which the Church has yet to recover.

Fr. Miceli cautiously watched the progression of Vatican II while teaching at various Jesuit institutions. He did not share the same enthusiasm for change that many of his brother Jesuits did and that skepticism would serve him well when so many others were abandoning the ship or selling out to the progressivism and liberal theology that so permeated not only his beloved Order, but every parish as well.



www.marys-touch.com...


edit on 12-5-2012 by BIHOTZ because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 06:24 PM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI
PS.
I learned Latin at school, to the level of "A-level G.C.E."
Until recently, Latin teaching used to be the norm in British schools.
So the language has certainly not been hidden, but today people may be less interested in learning it.



edit on 12-5-2012 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)


Yep, it was pretty much phased out by the time I started school in the late 70s, but certainly my parents generation were taught Latin at school as part of the curriculum. It was optional when I started High School and the only people that chose to do it were ones who had plans to study clerical or medicine. I'm not so sure it was part of the English or Welsh curriculum but it was here for sure up until the late 60s.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 06:25 PM
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reply to post by masqua
 


Yes in many ways the Vatican has treated Latin as if it were a "secret code" or something similar.

Many have stated over the years vocally and in writing that they believe that the reason the Vatican was upset about the Bible being translated into a common language is because it stripped them of power and gave the people the chance to actually start reading it themselves. The people began to find sections of the text that were often ignored or glossed over, and parts of the text which apparently condemned the Church itself as apostasy. In their view, the act of translating and copying the Bible was liberating them from the powerful clutches of the Church, which at that time era was totally intertwined with the State.

Remember that prior to this well over 90% of the population was illiterate, and it wasn't really until much later on when the printing press was developed and perfected that literature became widespread enough to really get into the hands of the people and bring the literacy rates up.

Also consider that learning to read a book in your own language can be difficult for an illiterate adult, much less trying to learn Latin which wasn't commonplace during that time era for the average population.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 06:28 PM
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reply to post by masqua
 


Can't kill what was dead before the Protestant Reformation began. Latin was on it's way out the door when the Holy Roman Empire was spit in 2 between Rome and Constantinople.

Sorry this isn't something you can hang on us. If anything killed that language it was the Church of Rome in it's desire to keep christianity only in the hands of the elite clergy and nobility, in the Dark Ages and Medievel period peasants were forbidden to learn to read and write for fear they would learn the truth and cause rebellion and revolution, so the "Sacred Mysteries" were only spoken in Latin. Unfortunately the word of God didn't do those poor souls anygood who couldn't speak latin or read the book in their own language because it was only written in Latin and ancient Koine Greek.

Makes you wonder how many souls were damned by the Roman Catholic Church for that stunt huh?



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 06:29 PM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI
And do Americans know the schoolboy rhyme;
"Latin is a language, as dead as dead can be.
It killed the ancient Romans, and now it's killing me" ?


I remember hearing something like that a looong time ago.



posted on May, 12 2012 @ 06:38 PM
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Originally posted by lonewolf19792000
reply to post by masqua
 


Can't kill what was dead before the Protestant Reformation began. Latin was on it's way out the door when the Holy Roman Empire was spit in 2 between Rome and Constantinople.


Technically speaking, you are referring to the split of the Roman Empire (IMPERIVM ROMANVM).

The "Holy Roman Empire" was actually :

a German empire that existed from 962 to 1806 in Central Europe. It was ruled by the Holy Roman Emperor.


Now it could be easy to confuse the two because technically the HRE was following the direct imperial tradition of Rome and they considered the Emperor as from the direct lineage of Caesars (and indeed their genealogy records seem to agree with this matter). In this Thread I traced Queen Liz II through the HRE to the Caesars of Rome


In 962 Otto I was crowned Holy Roman Emperor (German: Römisch-Deutscher Kaiser), although the Roman imperial title was first restored to Charlemagne in 800. Otto was the first emperor of the realm who was not a member of the earlier Carolingian dynasty.[2] The last Holy Roman Emperor was Francis II, who abdicated and dissolved the Empire in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars


HRE Wiki
edit on 12-5-2012 by muzzleflash because: (no reason given)



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