History of Latin
A number of historical phases of the language have been recognized, each distinguished by subtle differences in vocabulary, usage, spelling, morphology and syntax. There are no hard and fast rules of classification; different scholars emphasize different features. As a result, the list has variants, as well as alternative names. In addition to the historical phases, Ecclesiastical Latin refers to the styles used by the writers of the Roman Catholic Church, as well as by Protestant scholars, from Late Antiquity onward.
The generally recognized main phases under their most frequent names are introduced below.
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“... the history of the race, from infancy through its stages of barbarism, heathenism, civilization, and Christianity, is a process of suffering, as the lower principles of humanity are gradually subjected to the higher.”
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