https://www.duolingo.com/theodetweiler

Why not Latin?

Does anyone know why Duolingo does not offer Latin, nor is it in incubation, yet Klingon and Esperanto are/will be offered???

I really want to learn Latin.

2 years ago

18 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/HowieJosh8

I cannot say, but people post over and over asking for Latin.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mereade
Mereade
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It's not there because only a limited number of courses can be in the incubator at the same time. Everytime there is a new free spot, the duolingo staff chooses from the languages people have signed up for teaching.

Right now, these languages are being developed for the English speakers: Greek, Klingon, Romanian, Hungarian, Indonesian, Welsh, Czech, Hindi, Vietnamese, Swahili, Hebrew, Yiddish. And others are being developed with the other base languages. Once there is a free spot, there are many languages the community has been asking for. I guess Latin won't be started before Finnish, Croatian and perhaps a couple more languages, but that is just my guess.

But I would love to see a Latin Duolingo course as well :-)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KierenMcCormack
KierenMcCormack
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it's not that there isn't a free spot, it's just Duolingo needs to start a course. There is no limit to the amount of languages possible in the incubator. I'm pretty sure that it will add a Latin course along with others like Finnish and Icelandic soon because of its high demand.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mereade
Mereade
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from what I read, there was a limit as the courses in the incubator need attention from the staff as well, who have limited amounts of free time. I may have relied on the wrong sources, true. thanks

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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There isn't a (fixed) number of courses in Incubator's Phase 1 but there is a limit of the number of new teams (of contributors) Duo staff can handle at the same time:

  • they need to explain to them how it works (and there are a lot of things),
  • they need to setup the incub. for the new course the team will create (which can be especially a lot of work when it's either both of "the first course teaching a given language" and "the first course teaching from a given language"),
  • they need to keep an eye on the new teams for some times
  • they need to have special care of their needs since a new language may implying new features needed that weren't for other languages,
  • and so on...

That's why the incubator see arriving a new course in Phase 1 "only" every 11 days on average since Incubator's launching.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/theodetweiler

Oh, thank you!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nimg.italy

You are not the only one who is desiring for a Latin course added to Duo. In fact some of our fellow Duolinguists have been posting discussion forums teaching us the basics of Latin: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/8053459 Hopefully that will help you out!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/theodetweiler

THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nimg.italy

No problem :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hannahxf

yeah

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PJMCD
PJMCD
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If you would like to learn Latin, might I suggest learning the Cambridge Latin course? It isn't free, but it is very good!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/finndj
finndj
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Because Latin is a historical language, you would be hard pressed to find someone who speaks Latin fluently, and is also aware of the existence of Duolingo. It is mainly only professors of Latin who speak Latin, and many of them are probably completely unaware of Duolingo. However, Latin is the official language of Vatican City, so, I suppose, in theory, they could help out in having Latin spoken in a more mainstream fashion. Like how the Welsh government helped out with the Welsh court, why doesn't the Vatican?

Also, it has been leaked that next year Duolingo will be incubating five courses for endangered languages. So, I think it is safe to say that Latin is fairly endangered, as it is practically extinct, and we may see it as a course in the next few months. What I am wondering though- what flag will it use? I am thinking either the flag of Vatican City, the flag of the Roman Empire. As for the monument, this is a little tricky, as most of these fall more into Italian culture than in Roman.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/HowieJosh8

Latin is obviously not dead in the way that lost languages are dead.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/finndj
finndj
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I agree with you. I suppose you could think of Duolingo as a sort resuscitator for a dead or dying language. As Irish was beginning to "die," Duolingo decided to put it on "life support," and now it has over a million more people that can speak it to an A2-B1 proficiency, thanks to Duolingo. Esperanto was in its coffin, ready to be lowered, when Dr.Duo came an resuscitated him. Now, there are over 200k people who can speak it to an A2-B1 proficiency. Esperanto is still on life support.

Hopefully, Dr. Duo will bring Latin back to life, even though it has been dead for a fairly long time.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer
scarcerer
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I more or less agree with you, though the numbers are for people who have started the course, not finished it. But yes, Duo is certainly helping to keep these languages alive.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/kevinmclarke
kevinmclarke
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(in response to scarcerer)

Tota erras via.

Granted that it is not used in the same way as other languages, it is not at all dead, being still relevant to varying degrees to more than a billion people. That would be easy to scoff at, until one stumbles upon a group praying in Latin in a foreign land. It is still the primary language of Catholic life. Not only are liturgies still celebrated in Latin in an increasing number of places, but every time the Church has published something over the last century, the most fundamental source language is Latin. In other words, documents are still being written in Latin. There is a body responsible for bringing new words and idioms into Latin. Further, there are summer institutes where only Latin is spoken.

One could argue just from bare utility though. Latin is still part of curricular offerings (for good reason) in many a high school and is necessary for classics majors, students of theology, seminarians, and profoundly useful for those in the medical profession, biologists, botanists, etc. If it were to be offered, it would provide a much valuable resource to at least several million Duolingo users (and future users who will flock hither when their teachers send them). After it exits the beta phase, there are a great many Latin texts online that would make for very exciting immersion opportunities.

By all appearances, it seems that Duolingo is sitting on its hands on this one. Too bad. Dicendo dicere discunt.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/theodetweiler

I would guess they would use the flag of the Vatican. The flag of the Roman Empire looks a lot like the Reichsadler used by Nazi Germany. They could also use the current flag of the city of Rome.

2 years ago
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