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Who created the Latin language?


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January 10, 2010 5:30PM


Latin was the language spoken by the Romans in Italy, the people who created the Roman Empire. The Latin language was not deliberately created. It was the language spoken on the streets of Rome, a lot more like Italian or Spanish than the Latin that we read in books today. Street Latin was a kind of slang, just as we have slang speech in modern languages, in modern times, different from the written language.

However, Roman citizens, authors, writers, playwrights, and poets, like Cicero and Vergil, did create the more complicated forms that we see in written Latin: they added constructions, conjugations, and declensions to deal with more complicated ways of dealing with information in time and space. The authors needed to add all those strange tenses with the strange-sounding names, to convey ideas more complicated than the street lingo could handle.


Agree with part of the above. Writers described, categorized, and gave names to things like cases of nouns, and moods and tenses and moods of verbs. Unwritten languages can be quite complicated, and in some cases certain aspects of language get simpler as time goes on. It is believed that Indo-European had eight cases for nouns; Latin has five, German four. In English we have lost cases of nouns completely and rely more on word order and prepositions. Subject, object, and possessive could be thought of as three cases of pronouns.