Language and Culture
Modern linguists divide Celtic languages into two major groups, the P-Celtic, from which the Brythonic languages: Welsh, Breton, Cornish and Cumbric derive, and the Q-Celtic, from which come the Goidelic languages: Irish, Manx and Gaelic. The Pictish language remains enigmatic, since the Picts had no written script of their own and all that survives are place names and some isolated inscriptions in Irish ogham script. Most modern linguists accept that, although the nature and unity of Pictish language is unclear, it belonged to the former group. Historical sources, as well as place name evidence, indicate the ways in which the Pictish language in the north and Cumbric languages in the south were overlaid and replaced by Gaelic, Old English and later Norse in this period. By the High Middle Ages the majority of people within Scotland spoke the Gaelic language, then simply called Scottish, or in Latin, lingua Scotica. The Kingdom of Alba was overwhelmingly an oral society dominated by Gaelic culture. Our fuller sources for Ireland of the same period suggest that there would have been filidh, who acted as poets, musicians and historians, often attached to the court of a lord or king, and passed on their knowledge and culture in Gaelic to the next generation.
In the Northern Isles the Norse language brought by Scandinavian occupiers and settlers evolved into the local Norn, which lingered until the end of the eighteenth century and Norse may also have survived as a spoken language until the sixteenth century in the Outer Hebrides. French, Flemish and particularly English became the main language of Scottish burghs, most of which were located in the south and east, an area to which Anglian settlers had already brought a form of Old English. In the later part of the twelfth century, the writer Adam of Dryburgh described lowland Lothian as "the Land of the English in the Kingdom of the Scots". At least from the accession of David I, Gaelic ceased to be the main language of the royal court and was probably replaced by French, as evidenced by reports from contemporary chronicles, literature and translations of administrative documents into the French language. After this "de-gallicisation" of the Scottish court, a less highly regarded order of bards took over the functions of the filidh and they would continue to act in a similar role in the Highlands and Islands into the eighteenth century. They often trained in bardic schools, of which a few, like the one run by the MacMhuirich dynasty, who were bards to the Lord of the Isles, existed in Scotland and a larger number in Ireland, until they were suppressed from the seventeenth century. Members of bardic schools were trained in the complex rules and forms of Gaelic poetry. Much of their work was never written down and what survives was only recorded from the sixteenth century.
In the late Middle Ages, Middle Scots, often simply called English, became the dominant language of the country. It was derived largely from Old English, with the addition of elements from Gaelic and French. Although resembling the language spoken in northern England, it became a distinct dialect from the late fourteenth century onwards. It began to be adopted by the ruling elite as they gradually abandoned French. By the fifteenth century it was the language of government, with acts of parliament, council records and treasurer's accounts almost all using it from the reign of James I onwards. As a result, Gaelic, once dominant north of the Tay, began a steady decline. Lowland writers began to treat Gaelic as a second class, rustic and even amusing language, helping to frame attitudes towards the highlands and to create a cultural gulf with the lowlands.
Other articles related to "language and culture, language, languages, culture":
... The dominant language of the West was Latin, whilst that of the East was Greek ... When the Latins had to sign something, it was in a language they didn't understand and had to take someone's word for it ...
... makedonski jazik, ) is a South Slavic language, spoken as a first language by approximately 2–3 million people principally in the region of Macedonia and the ... It is the official language of the Republic of Macedonia and an official minority language in parts of Albania, Romania and Serbia ... Standard Macedonian was implemented as the official language of the Socialist Republic of Macedonia in 1945 and has since developed a thriving literary tradition ...
... Language endangerment occurs when a language is at risk of falling out of use as its speakers die out or shift to speaking another language ... Language loss occurs when the language has no more native speakers, and becomes a dead language ... If eventually no one speaks the language at all, it becomes an extinct language ...
... That Despite the variety of languages of Liberia (where English, official language of the country, is spoken by the 20% of the population), the majority of Liberians in the United ... kru is the most native widely spoken Liberian language in the United States ... Another language spoken by some Liberian Americans is Gullah, a Creole language, influenced by from the Gola ethnic group of Liberia ...
... The connection between culture and language has been noted as far back as the classical period and probably long before ... those who speak unintelligible languages ... The fact that different groups speak different, unintelligible languages is often considered more tangible evidence for cultural differences than other less obvious cultural traits ...
Famous quotes containing the words language and, culture and/or language:
“These are our grievances which we have thus laid before his majesty with that freedom of language and sentiment which becomes a free people, claiming their rights as derived from the laws of nature, and not as the gift of their chief magistrate.”
—Thomas Jefferson (17431826)
“The second fundamental feature of culture is that all culture has an element of striving.”
—Johan Huizinga (18721945)
“Language is a skin: I rub my language against the other. It is as if I had words instead of fingers, or fingers at the tip of my words. My language trembles with desire.”
—Roland Barthes (19151980)