Latin Language a Dead Language

Would you agree if a priest said that Latin is now a dead language that is why it is much better to use our own language in the church.

it is precisely because Latin is a “dead” language, and its vocabulary and grammar are not undergoing constant change as are modern languages, that the Church retains it as the official language. A document written in Latin - and a Bible translation - will not change in meaning or interpretation over the centuries if the language is not evolving. A vernacular translation of the original Latin document will therefore always begin with the same words and meaning.

Latin is not a “dead” language. Far from it!

The ultra-modernists think that using Latin in the Liturgy is something that belongs in the past.

Well…

Medicine uses Latin. The names of muscles like pectorals, deltoids, gluteus, etc. are ALL Latin words. The term “cardiac” comes from the Latin root for “heart”. Medicine makes extensive use of Latin.

The Law uses Latin. Terms such as “stare decisis” are Latin.

Science uses Latin.

Yet, when some in the “Latin” Catholic Church want to use Latin, they catch BS from the uninformed.

For what it’s worth - Spanish, Portugese, French, Itlaian, Romanian, Catalan, Galician, and all the dialects of these languages are “modern” versions of Latin.

I know very little Latin. I wish I knew more. Understanding of Latin opens the doorway to comprehension of all Romance languages as well as greater understanding of English - which received a massive infusion of Latin due to the Norman invasion of England in the year 1066.

I happen to hope that we continue to use the vernacular in the Mass (with improved translations, God willing), but it would be inaccurate to say that Latin is dead. Archaic, but not dead. There’s a Vatican office that is in charge of blending new latin words/phrases to deal with new inventions and developments, like words for computer, movie, television, telephone, etc. They publish a list every year or so. And it is still the official language of the Holy See.

To say Latin is a “dead” language is not accurate. The Catholic High School my son attends makes it mandatory to take Latin for 2 years and for those kids that enjoy it they can take 4 years of it and even an A.P. class.
So “dead” far from it!!

My husband and I recently took our kids to a Novus Ordo Latin Mass at St. John Cantius Church in Chicago. My husband grew up in Italy, and I grew up on the Southside of Chicago, both during the pre-council era,but we were able to make the responses, chant the Credo and Pater Noster together in Latin (while our kids just looked bewildered) because we’d both learned the same language
at Mass. Say what you will about the benefits of the vernacular Mass, Latin was a unifying factor.

My :twocents: to add to the others:

Latin is not a dead language. It is an orthographic and chirographic language – ie* it is not spoken by anyone who does not also read and write it (and by extension: its continued development is controlled by those who read &** write – there is no Latin “baby-talk”).

Some of those who maintain the development of Latin can be found here: FoundationLatinitas (nb*** their Lexicon recentis Latinitatis)

(* ie = id est = that is)
(** & developed from a stylized “et” = and)
(*** nb = nota bene = note well)

tee

Latin’s a dead language,
as dead as it can be.
It killed the ancient Romans
and now it’s killing me!

:smiley: Sorry, I saw the title of your thread and just couldn’t resist!

But, seriously, tee_eff_emm is correct. Latin simply does not exist as a conversational language anymore. This hardly renders it “dead” or “useless”, as previous posters have said so well.

[quote=viktor aleksndr]Would you agree if a priest said that Latin is now a dead language that is why it is much better to use our own language in the church.
[/quote]

I tend to believe this is a very parochial ( :smiley: ) view.

It must be very time consuming and costly for the Vatican to generate, not only precise doctrinal and pastoral statements, but also the equivalent in many languages. Latin tends to serve as the master reference, both as the source of many languages, and also the primary document. What we read in English from the Vatican is usually a translation. Even with the use of a master reference document in Latin, we see wide variation and divergence in the various translations. Imagine the mess if there was no master document!

[quote=viktor aleksndr]Would you agree if a priest said that Latin is now a dead language that is why it is much better to use our own language in the church.
[/quote]


My Friend - you just do not understand…at all.

Eclesiastical language HAS to be a language that does not change it’s meaning as years go by. How would you ever know what the Early Fathers or the Original Bible said if they had written in an ever-changeing language?

The big problem with the U.S. Constitution is that the meaning of words change in English, so the Constitution can be interpreted to mean things the Founders didnt mean at all.

Yes Latin is a dead language. THANK GOD! Sanctus means today exactly what it mean 1500 years ago. THANK GOD! Do you want the meanings of Christ’s words to change?

[quote=peregrinator_it]But, seriously, tee_eff_emm is correct. Latin simply does not exist as a conversational language anymore. This hardly renders it “dead” or “useless”, as previous posters have said so well.
[/quote]

FTR: I did not say Latin is not conversational. (I know some who can converse, and wish I had more practice myself) Only that it is a language with no native speakers. (Apologies to any I may be unaware of)

tee

[quote=tee_eff_em]FTR: I did not say Latin is not conversational. (I know some who can converse, and wish I had more practice myself) Only that it is a language with no native speakers. (Apologies to any I may be unaware of)

tee
[/quote]

Oops. Sorry.

[quote=Exporter]***************************************************************************

My Friend - you just do not understand…at all.

Eclesiastical language HAS to be a language that does not change it’s meaning as years go by. How would you ever know what the Early Fathers or the Original Bible said if they had written in an ever-changeing language?

The big problem with the U.S. Constitution is that the meaning of words change in English, so the Constitution can be interpreted to mean things the Founders didnt mean at all.

Yes Latin is a dead language. THANK GOD! Sanctus means today exactly what it mean 1500 years ago. THANK GOD! Do you want the meanings of Christ’s words to change?
[/quote]

You had me until the end. Christ more than likely did not speak Latin. He more than likely spoke Aramaic, maybe Koine Greek. Fantasy to assert otherwise.

[quote=JKirkLVNV]There’s a Vatican office that is in charge of blending new latin words/phrases to deal with new inventions and developments, like words for computer, movie, television, telephone, etc.
[/quote]

Not only that, but it is even possible to write Perl programs in Latin!

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