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On Tue, 3 Nov 1998, John Cowan wrote:

> Auxlangers as a rule want to make such changes in the world:
> specifically, they want an auxlang, either already existing or soon to
> be created, to become a widely spoken second language.
>
> Rightly or wrongly, the perception is that there is at most
> one slot for such a thing, so if "my" auxlang "succeeds", then
> by definition "your" auxlang "fails".  So far all have "failed".

Thank you John... I don't know why I didn't see this OBVIOUS point, and
Bryan has put it a little more beerishly, ;-) but it generates a new
question.  We've got Esperanto going along, and Occidental, and now Lojban
and NGL... say that NGL gets ironed out to perfection some day amongst its
members, and having visited its page I realize that it doesn't consider
itself as an auxiliary language but as a primary language for the modern
world:

        Will there then be a competition for that one slot among
        these improved languages?

        What if (science fiction) all of them catch on equally?
        Aren't we back where we started with multiple improved
        languages?
        ;-)

        The requirement that there has to be ONE lingua franca language
        for the world to speak seems a little severe, and one that
        would be hard to keep track of.

        Then what would happen if different branches develop as is
        inevitable in all developing languages?

        Latin really worked as a lingua franca way back when, but it
        was adopted because it was the language of a literature and
        a culture that was already in existence, and already had
        attached to it a certain prestige, and a body of classical
        and religious texts that made studying it worthwhile.
        Also, students were beaten if they didn't conform to the
        grammatical standards of the language.  We don't do that
        now.

        But if there were TEXTS out there that made it imperative that
        the nations of the world unite around them, I could see the
        creation of a new lingua franca.  But starting from the
        language end of it... it's just not going to work.  There
        has to be a more enticing incentive.  What is that going to
        be?

I am sure all of this is completely old hat to you auxlangers, and
that's why few of you are jumping to answer my queries.

Sally
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Sally Caves

Li fetil'aiba, dam hoja-le uen.
volwin ly, vul inua aiba bronib.

This leaf, the wind takes her.
She's old, and born this year.
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