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[Don Harlow 980226]
By "scandinavos ... educate" I presume that Kjell is
referring to Scandinavians who, at some point or another,
have studied one or more Romance languages in school. By
comparison with, for instance, English, the Scandinavian
languages (speaking only of the IE ones, not
Finnish or Sami,
    [Allan Kiviaho 980227]
    Well, we Finns must read in the school at least three languages,
    Finnish and Swedish (another official language in Finland) and
    one other language which is usually English today, it was German
    when I was young (I'm 62 years old now). Some pupils study also
    a fourth language, French or German. It is shame that, for
historical
    reasons (three wars against Russia during this century, 1918,
    1939--40 and 1941--44 and some distinct campaigns after the First
    World War, e.g. in the Russian Carelia and the Estonian Liberation
    War, where the regiments of the Finnish volunteers played a very
    important role), nobody studies Russian, although Russia,
    a becoming  economic and capitalist great power is a very important
    country for us. When our daughter was 16 years old she had good
    command over 4 languages, Swedish, Finnish, English and French,
    in that order (Swedish is her mother tongue). Our son was only 13
    years old when he could speak pretty well Swedish (his mother
    tongue), Finnish, English and German (rather than French). Our
    daughter can some German, too, and both can at least read a
    little Russian. Our children were privileged in having chance to go
    in a top-class American school in Switzerland for 1.5 years.
        I have studied in the school only Finnish, Swedish and German.
    I have never studied English but one cannot but learn more or less
    English since most TV films are American etc. I have never studied
    any Romance language but I can easily read Russian, at least
    texts on chess (one of my main hobbies) and military history
    although I have never studied that language, either.
        I have been interested in Esperanto during some 50 years but
    about two years ago I started to study auxiliary languages in
    earnest and became immediately disillusioned with Esperanto for
    its visual ugliness (it sounds better than what it looks) and
    "bastardism" - it has an odd collection of arbitrately chosen
    words from several language groups, mostly Romance, English,
    German and Russian/Slavic. I went the usual way. At first I tried
    to reform Esperanto by eliminating diacritic signs, aj(n), oj(n)
    etc., substituting all bastard words for Latin ones
    (or neo-Latin, if the corresponding Latin word
    sounded VERY archaic) etc. However, I did not feel
    satisfied with that. The next step was to develop a
    conlang based on Latin words and (reformed) grammar of
    Esperanto.
        This sounding very bastardic as well, I developed a system
    with Latin words (very archaic words I substituted mostly for
    Italian words) and LATIN GRAMMAR, but a radically simplified
    one. You remember the speech of Mirabeau that I sent a couple
    of months ago with a translation into my simplified Latin. Then I
    started to  to surf in Internet and found that there has been quite
    a few attempts of simplified Latin, the most famous of them being
    Peano's  Latin sine flexione (A very good name for this language -
    Europeano - was invented, I think, by Jay Bowks). Peano's
    language is very good but he had gone two flexiones too far
    to my taste.
        The impact of Latin is very strong in Finland. The Finnish
    Broadcasting Company "YLE" (Suomen Yleisradio) is sending
    regularly "Nuntii latini", news in Latin, receiving praises from his
    holiness the Pope himself, a Finnish university docent sings
    tangos and Elvis Presley's songs in Latin etc. For some peculiar
    reason the pronunciation of the Finnish language is perhaps the
    most (classical) Latin of all languages, although Finnish is not an
    Indo-European language. The favored entertainment of the
    professors of Latin in the Finnish universities is to parody
    American and French ways of pronunciation of Latin after some
    international conference of the Latinists.
        I had a stormy period when I thought that perhaps the European
    Union should take, after all, classical Latin as its common
language.
    I bought a mountain of Latin text- and grammar books, books of
    Gaius Iulius Caesar (I have crossed the Rubicon in 1985!) etc.
    But classical Latin is so difficult (a regular verb can have some
    150 forms) that after heroic struggle I had to give up. Although
    the Finnish language with its 16 cases is probably still more
    complicated and difficult than Latin ... But TWO monstrous
    languages is perhaps too much for one mortal being (Morituri vos
    salutat!).
        I liked Glosa very much. Perhaps a language with totally
    invented words, without any connections to natlangs,  with
    grammar of Glosa (i.e. very much like the  Chinese and Malayan
    grammar) would be the best choice for an exter-European IAL.
        But as a European I want a language that is based on the
    heritage of the European culture. That language is Latin (also as
    a bridge from the Greek culture). Oh. how happy I became when
    I found in Internet Interlingua. It was exactly what I had been
    after. The famous words of Vladimir Ilyitch Lenin were ringing in my
    ears: "TAKAYA PARTIYA YEST!" (There IS such a party - meaning
    the Bolshevik Party), i.e. "TAKIY JAZYK YEST!" (There IS such a
    language - meaning Interlingua).
        Interlingua is natural enough, rhythmical, vocalistic,
    beautiful, an ideal language. More than a mere auxiliary
    language. It could easily become a MAIN LANGUAGE of
    the European Union, the real LINGUA FRANCA of all Europeans.
        I feel sorry that so many auxlanguagists languish in the
    darkness of ignorance and stick with religious phanaticism to
    their various unnatural and very peculiar lingos (Although of course
    inventing a new language all of ones own is an entertaining hobby).
    It would be desirable, however, that the auxlinguists would unite
    their efforts in order to bring Interlingua to victory in Europe
    now when Europe is taking decisive steps towards a
    mighty economic and cultural unit (EMU, common currency
    etc.). We are on the way to the Federation of Europe, a new but
    greater version of the old Holy Roman Empire. (In my Holy Roman
    Empire there is place also for Russia and other Slavic countries
    and the countries of the Turkic commonwealth and a perfect
    candidate for the Emperor were Otto von Habsburg, who is the
    official emperor of Austria-Hungary, albeit an emperor without
    an empire at the moment). I do not want to see Europe, where
    everybody speak English - it is not a European language at all - or
    German or French or whatsoever. I want to see a Europe where
    everybody speak Interlingua AND their own languages (Let the
    British speak English on their island). Actually the Europeans
    must be able to speak English, too, because it is hardly thinkable
    that the U.S.A. and other English speaking countries would ever
    give up their beloved albeit defect language. And the NATO will
    remain an English speaking organisation for a long time.
        To be realistic I hardly will see any auxlang being generally
    spoken in  Europe, old as I am,  but I really hope that I can see
    that at least from Paradise.
        A young average Finn indeed can read Interlingua at the first
    sight, because the English language contains so many Romance
    words and because there are so many so-called "civilisation
    words" - sivistyssana used in Finland, meaning borrowed
    scientific or cultural words, mainly from Latin, Greek and French.
        When our children were in the American school in Switzerland,
    they easily outperformed such pupils who had English as their
    mother tongue. Our daughter was swiftly promoted from the
    "EFLA" (English as Foreign Language) to the normal American
    high school curriculum. She achieved soon the "high honours" and
    became the best pupil in the whole school and was awarded
    with the "ECIS" (European Council of International Schools) medaille
    for "exemplatory merits of increasing the friendship and
    understanding between different nationalities". Our son was in
"EMMA"
    (English, Math, Music and Arts) class, he became quite soon a high
    honour pupil, too. Another pupil with highest scores was from
    Japan and one of the very good boys was a certain Ali Koluman, a
    Turk who had an Estonian mother.
        The problem with the pupils from English-speaking countries was
    that they had great difficulties with the spelling the words of
Latin
    origin, at least of the more rare "academic" words. A Finn, for
    instance, has a very good ear and eye for all kinds of words because
    they live from the early childhood in a multilingual environment.
    Another reason was, of course, that the most Anglo-Americans,
    South Africans etc. were in general quite lazy ... They could afford
    such luxury as being sons of rich businessmen. Our children who
    had hard-working proletariat as their parents who had been
    accidentally thrown to Switzerland to work there for a while had to
    work hard, too. Their English teacher, Mrs. Pelech (Pronounced as
    "peleek", her nickname was,  of course, Mrs. Spelling and she was
    of Czech origin, if I remember right) had no mercy for the lazy boys
    who mutilated the words of Latin origin.
    INTERLINGUA VINCERA!
    Allan Kiviaho
    Finlandia
    If my English falls short of perfect, you may forgive it,
    because I have never studied that lingo).
 
for which this is even more true) are sorely
lacking in Romance vocabulary. I'd also point out that
not all Spanish speakers understand Interlingua -- my
wife, whose native language is Spanish, has considerable
trouble with it.
    [Allan Kiviaho 980226]
    This sounds very odd because I, after reading Interlingua, can
    now quite easily understand written Spanish. (This I dare say
    in belief that you will never get an opportunity to put me upon
    a test ...). I suspect that your wife does not understand
Interlingua
    very well because you tell her not to do that ...