European Languages

Many languages trace their routes to Europe, and the European Mediterranean. Even while there are vast differences between Latin, or English, or the Slavic languages, they all in some way trace their routes to a family of languages called the Indo-European languages. Many also share common words due to more recent history like the Latin influence on western Europe during the Roman Empire, or the Greek influence on Eastern Europe during the Byzantine Empire. Religion and culture have also deeply affected the changing of Indo-European into the languages we know today.

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Indo-European Language

Indo European derives from an extinct language that never had any written script called Proto-Indo-European. Its impact can be seen both in European as well as Asian and Middle Eastern Languages. Recent genetic and anthropology studies have changed the traditional learning of Indo-European, which included previously extensive study of Greek. Today it is known that several language families, such as Celtic, Germanic, Slavic, Celtic, as well as even Iranic derive from Prot-Indo-European influence.

The following are resources regarding the languages in the Indo European family.

Latin

Latin has been in use since around 500BC. Because of the influence of Latin on English it’s among the easiest classic languages to learn. Also the Latin alphabet is very close to the English alphabet. Latin is important not simply historically but also due to its impact on the sciences where several terms especially in West European languages are derived from Latin.

Greek

While Greek language may be less familiar to the western European language speak the alphabet is more well known as the basis for fraternity and sorority names as well as a huge influence on mathematical symbols. For instance Pi derives from the Greek letter for ‘P’. Greek, specifically Koine Greek, is as critical for the study of the New Testament as Latin is for the sciences.

Germanic Languages

Derivatives of the Germanic Languages are in wide use in Europe today. Much of northern Europe both Western & Eastern were influenced by the Germanic Languages.

The Slavic Languages

The Slavic languages all derive from what is a now extinct proto-Slavic language that began as a dialect of indo-European. The closest language still spoken would be Old Slavonic that is a southern-Slavic dialect. Bulgarian, being a southern Slavic language, is also close to Slavonic. Slavic is important historically as the ‘Primary Chronicle’ of the Rus is written in Proto-Slavic and contains valuable information about Pre-Christian Europe. Modern Slavic languages include Czech, Russian, Polish, Serbian, and more. Many Slavic languages use the Cryillic alphabet invented by monks St Kyrill/Cyrill & Methodius who used the language to translate Greek Christian writings for Slavic language speakers. Russian uses a condensed version of this alphabet, as does Ukrainian, and Belarussian. Some Slavic languages however use the Latin alphabet, for instance Polish, and Czech.

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