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Survival of minority languages (was Re: World English (was: ...))

From:Jörg Rhiemeier <joerg_rhiemeier@...>
Date:Sunday, December 28, 2008, 18:25

On Fri, 26 Dec 2008 09:01:23 +0000, R A Brown wrote:

> Welsh has survived because, as Jörg, observed: > "When it comes to chances of survival of minor languages, > a key issue is how much the language is considered worth > preserving by its own speakers, and AFAIK in Wales there > indeed is a strong awareness that the Welsh language is > worth preserving." > > An even better example, of course, is Basque which, against all odds, > has survived the encroachment of Romance for an even longer time that > Welsh has survived the encroachment of English (and Basque on the French > side of the Pyrenees does not have the political support that is > currently enjoyed by Welsh).
As for my conlangs: I make a similar assumption for the modern Albic languages. These languages are spoken by small groups in the UK and Ireland, also in Iceland and on the Azores, Madeira and Canary Islands. They survived where other, larger languages died out: there is one Albic language in Somerset and another in Yorkshire where Celtic has disappeared long ago, also at least one on the Canaries where Guanche is as dead as a dodo. How did the Albic languages survive pressure from English and Spanish which was too much for more widely spoken languages (Celtic, Berber) which moved in after the Commonwealth of the Elves fell? The reason is that at all times, the surviving Elvish communities never considered their own languages outdated rustic patois, but an asset to carry forth into the future. They have always been aware of their value. After the fall of the Commonwealth, the Elves became something like an ethnic minority cum secret society. (Some people here perhaps remember John Fisher's Anta, to mention a similar concept.) They always remembered that they were the offspring of a once great civilization and the heirs of a rich cultural heritage to be handed down from generation to generation. ... brought to you by the Weeping Elf


Erbrice <erbrice@...>