Being able to speak more than one language is a skill that not many can acquire. Although more than half of the world’s population can speak at least two languages, there are still a significant amount of people who choose to only speak one language, thinking that it is enough. However, learning a new language is like learning a new culture. Studying how they pronounce words, how they use specific terms for certain ideas, how they adapt to a situation depending on the language that they use, these are prime examples of how language learners immerse themselves into the culture of another.
But if there are people who do not learn a specific language, it dies out especially if no one uses them anymore. Isn’t it kind of interesting to know that there are actual languages that used to be spoken and written in the past, but are non-existent today. Little is known as to why some of these languages disappeared. However, it does pique one’s curiosity. Here are 10 languages that are now extinct.
10. Middle English
Although there are loads of theatrical performances that try to imitate the magnificence and elegance of the Middle English language, nobody actually speaks it anymore. Of course, modern English came from it. But just because it’s not used anymore does not mean it’s not worth studying. Imagine studying the language spoken in the time of the popular Robin Hood.
Who would have thought that the romantic countries of Spain and Portugal have something in common, they used to be the place where the Iberian language thrived. This ancient European language is a series of symbols that could be gibberish to the ignorant eye. However, this particular language is so complex that it was even mentioned in particular myths and culture legends.
Probably one of the most intricate and time consuming languages of the past, Dacian is a language that was spoken and written in the land of Dacia, now known as Romania. This European language has been gone for a long time that experts have difficulty in pin-pointing what ancient language it branched out from or what modern languages branched out from it.
Sudan is a country in Africa that is relatively near Egypt. Because of the close proximity, the culture and the language have some similarities. However, the ancient people from Sudan wanted to be different from the powerful Egyptians and therefore had their own way of using symbols and ‘hieroglyphs’ and has come to be known now as the Meroitic language.
One of the most interesting languages to study, the Harrapan language is a series of symbols combined with animal carvings. It was spoken in the Indus Valley thousands of years ago and is now located in the Middle East. What is surprising about this language is that it was actually spoken by over five million people. Who would have thought that something so popular would become extinct.
A language that does not even have a verified name, Hattic is an extinct language that was spoken by people who lived in ancient Turkey. It’s symbols are highly recognizable because of the repetitive downwards brush strokes and sharp edges. Some of the languages that branched out from this ancient language are Caucasian languages such as Georgian.
4. Old Norse
Just like the next few languages on this list, the Old Norse is a language made up of symbols that most people would never understand. From the popular Norse gods to the Vikings, Old Norse is a language that was spoken many ages ago and can barely be understood. It was spoken in the regions where countries such as Iceland, Greenland, parts of Russia and France are now situated.
3. Ancient Greek
From the might heroes and the gods and goddesses of Ancient Greece, Ancient Greek is just as old and dated as the myths of the supreme beings. The first of the two languages in this list that has survived many drastic changes, Ancient Greek scriptures and writings can now be translated and understood with the assistance of the rosetta stone. Indeed, an extinct language that is long gone, it is still a language that makes one curious know more about it.
2. Ancient Egyptian
Imagine a world where hieroglyphs are still a thing and kids would learn how to write in stone tablets with symbols instead of letters. Ancient Egyptian is by far one of the most interesting languages that has ever been recorded. Although many African languages have branched out from this ancient tongue, nobody speaks Ancient Egyptian anymore. With the help of the Rosetta Stone, linguists and historians are now able to understand this highly complex language.
One of the most popular languages in the world, Latin is actually on the brink of extinction. Only a select few are able to speak the language, and most of them reside in the Vatican. The language used by great emperors of the Roman Empire, Latin is definitely one of the most iconic languages that have ever been spoken in our history. But because nobody speaks it anymore, it has now become a ‘dead’ language.