On Fri, Jun 15, 2012 at 4:08 PM, Padraic Brown <[log in to unmask]> wrote: > > I think that most reasonably well educated English speakers would at least > be aware that certain words are in some way related to words from other > languages -- a lot of scientific terminology and the like. That doesn't > mean they would know what language it's from, or what the ancient roots > mean or what the words look like in their native element. > > In my experience, it's a really common assumption that English comes from Latin. In fact, I've met very well educated people who have assumed that all languages came from Latin. I think that's evidence that we don't spend much time talking about the history of the language in schools, and we could perhaps do more. And it would also be nice to get rid of some of the stupider popular concepts of language, such as change being the same as decay, when it's really a necessary feature of all living languages. Or the notion that language "purity" means anything other than preference at best and bigotry at the worst. Or the notion that language should be logical -- and that's an old one. --Patrick -- Second Person, a chapbook of poetry by Patrick Dunn, is now available for order from Finishing Line Press<http://www.finishinglinepress.com/NewReleasesandForthcomingTitles.htm> and Amazon<http://www.amazon.com/Second-Person-Patrick-Dunn/dp/1599249065/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1324342341&sr=8-2>.