We all know that learning a new language can be fun and exciting, but what if you could learn an extinct one? Would there be any benefits to doing so? Before we can answer this question, we need to first define what an extinct language is.
An extinct language is a language no longer spoken by the majority of the population. This means that there are very few people who know how to speak or understand it. Modern language extinction is typically due to population decline, word shift, or the death of the last native speaker.
Popular extinct languages that are still studied include Mayan, Sanskrit, Latin, and Ancient Greek. However, the total number is much greater than these five. There are currently around 573 known dead languages, and that number is growing every day.
What Are the Benefits of Learning An Extinct Language?
1. Improving Social Skills
All language types that we have today come from the ones that were once common, but most of them have been extinct.
For example, Latin has shaped many of the romantic languages that are spoken today, such as French, German, Spanish, Italian, and other romance languages.
By learning Latin, you are also learning how to form complex grammatical structures and vocabulary that are used in many other languages.
Moreover, knowing Latin will provide you with a solid basis for learning other foreign languages. If you want to travel throughout Europe, understanding Latin will help you to learn the foundations of several European languages much easier.
2. Strengthening Grammar Skills
Grammar is one of the most important aspects of language learning. It is the foundation on which all other language skills are built. By learning an extinct or endangered one, you will be able to improve your grammar skills in a variety of ways.
First, you will learn how to construct complex sentences and phrases. Second, you will learn how to use specific grammar rules in order to create accurate and effective communication. Finally, you will develop a better understanding of the grammar structure.
3. Increase in Academic Performance
If you are looking to improve your academic performance, learning an extinct language may be a good way to do so. By learning that, you will be able to increase your vocabulary and reading comprehension skills. You will also be able to improve your grammar and writing skills.
In addition, by studying extinct languages, you will learn how to think critically and analytically about complex topics. This will help you to better understand and retain information that you study in class.
4. Expand Your Knowledge of History
If you are interested in learning about history and cultural diversity, learning an extinct language can be a great way to do so. You will be able to learn about the history of the language itself. You will also be able to learn about the history of the people who spoke the language.
In addition, by studying an extinct language, you will be able to develop a better understanding of the roots and origins of many modern languages.
5. Boost Career Prospects
Knowing more than a single language can be a great asset when looking for a job. By studying an extinct language, you will be able to improve your fluency in a variety of languages. This will give you an advantage when applying for jobs or interviewing for positions.
Furthermore, by learning an extinct language, you will be able to develop a deeper understanding of the structure and grammar of the language. This will make it easier for you to communicate effectively in written and oral formats.
Some Types of Extinct Languages
There are a number of different types of extinct languages that are still studied today. These include:
1. Liturgical. These are languages that were used in religious ceremonies and rituals. They typically consist of complex grammatical structures and intricate vocabulary. For example, Latin was a liturgical language that was used in Roman Catholic and Protestant churches.
2. Semitic. These are descended from the ancient Canaanite and Phoenician languages. They include Hebrew, Arabic, Aramaic, and Syriac. Semitic languages are typically written in the Arabic alphabet.
3. Indic. These are the descendants of the ancient Indo-European language family. They include Hindi, Urdu, Bengali, Punjabi, and Nepali. Indic languages are written in the Sanskrit alphabet.
4. Australian Aboriginal. These are the indigenous languages of Australia, and they include Yolngu, Dhuwala, Gumbaynggirr, Gamilaraay, Gurindji, and Yuin. Australian Aboriginal languages are written using a variety of scripts, including abugidas (alphabet with additional symbols), syllabaries (alphabet with symbols representing syllables), and logographic (syllabaries with glyphs representing words).
5. Austronesian. These are the descendants of the ancient Austronesian language family. They include Malay, Tagalog, Chamorro, Hawaiian, and Samoan.
In our daily life, language is one of the most important tools that we use. By learning an extinct language, you will be able to enrich your own linguistic heritage and improve your language skills in a variety of ways.