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The writers of wiki.answers have a number of explanations including the following:

  • The oldest surviving writings on medicine are in the ancient Latin and Greek languages. Any writings in other languages either haven't been found or haven't survived. Modern medicine therefore respects those ancient Greek and Latin writings that have stood the test of time.
  • In the ancient time the contribution of Greeks and Latin language speakers (old Italy) is so vast, so influence came from there. We all remember contributio of Hypocrates, Aesculap, Gallen, Vinci.
  • NB! There are Gods in Greek Mythology who was taking care of Health Related matters (eg. Hygia)
  • Schools were based on Latin and Greek up through the 1800s into the early 1900s. Students spoke those languages throughout history. But, Latin is a difficult subject for many to learn. As school students moved away from having to study and use Latin, then Latin became almost exclusively used by Lawyers and Physicians.
  • In medicine, most of the technical terms are in Greek, because the Greeks were the first to practice it (in the western way of practicing medicine at least). Same thing for Latin for law.
  • because greek and latin were the langage that many people used for years
  • The use of Latin and Greek allows scientific terms to be the same (or nearly the same) in any language.
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Q: Why are Greek and Latin the dominant medical languages?
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What languages form the basis for medical terminology?

Greek and Latin are the primary source languages for medical terminology.


Why do you think many of the terms we use in medicine were derived from the greek and latin languages?

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