Historical Foundations

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Abstract

Language has been a way for all to interact with everyone. It has been used to keep ideas, emotions, laws and social correctness intact for all cultures. Latin was the original language that was used to communicate amongst all cultures. Now societies today used a variety of vernacular languages such as, Spanish, Italian and English. In many cultures knowing more than one language is considered a high value.

All aspects of culture, society and education were impacted during the Medieval times by the use of Latin. Until the 12th century the Roman Empire used Latin strictly as its language of choice until the Empire began to fall. The Roman Empire rule was very prominent in the Western World. When the Empire began to fall around 1200 A.D. the use of Latin went away with the end of the Roman rule. The beginning of vernacular languages started in the areas farthest away from the control of Roman rule. Slowly the use of Latin became obsolete and vernacular language was developing rapidly. Before the end of the Latin language, it was used mostly by writers and scholars. The development of Latin was influenced by other native languages which included Celtic languages, Greek, and Etruscan (University of Calgary, 1996). The Latin language continued to change and modified itself due to significant changes during each period. These changes affected the written language and the way it was spoken in both high society and the lower end that included the less educated. Alfred the Great was a powerful influence on vernacular language. He wrote many books in English while in control. Some of the books that he wrote in English yet had Latin roots were Beowulf and Angelo Saxton Chronicles. This benefited both the upper and lower classes of society since your status determined what language you spoke. Higher society spoke Latin but also read English and lower society spoke and read strictly English. The leaders of the spread of vernacular language were...
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