Romanian and Latin
Is anyone else noticing the starking similarities between Classic Latin and Romanian. When I'm learning this it feels like half of the vocab is Latin and the other half is new to me
Whatever some linguists decide for us and in our name, we are proud that along the centuries, in a Slavic sea, we remained an Latin island.
”Eu nu ți-aș dori vreodată să ajungi să ne cunoști / Nici ca Dunărea să-înece spumegând a tale oști...”
”De-aşa vremi se-nvredniciră cronicarii şi rapsozii; / Veacul nostru ni-l umplură saltimbancii şi irozii...”
Yes, Romanian is a Latin language, a form of Vulgar Latin spoken by the Former Dacian inhabitants of Modern Day Romania. Romanian is part of the Romance branch (Eastern Romance speakers, also known as Vlahs/Valahs/Wallahs/Blahs), however because of it's isolation from the other Romance speakers, it managed to keep key grammatical features from Latin and some direct vocab. that others did not.
At one point, Romanian was influenced by modern French and a revamp on Latin words. That's the reasoning behind their similarities.
yes, Romanian is a Latin language, but unlike the other languages in the family it comes from a slang version of it which the Dacians spoke and then that got mixed with the Latin spoken by the Romans when they invaded at the beginning of the second century and a few new words from the Slavic tribes passing through.
In history class in school they describe it as 85% Latin 10% Dacian and 5% Slavic. To be fair there are a lot of gaps in the history like the connection between Thracians and predecessors of Romans when trying to trace back the language branch and there are way too many new hypothesis developing in the last few years which make things even more complicated. So what I just said to you is a summary off all those things put together. Hope this was helpful :)
Perhaps today that is a good breakdown, but it wasn't always so. In the mid 19th century literally thousands of words were borrowed from French or Italian, partly to fill in the gaps with technical or abstract words that didn't have equivalents before, but partly to "re-Latinize" the language, as it replaced many old Slavic words that are no longer used or are archaic today. There is certainly more than 5% Slavic, and it includes some pretty common words. In the past, it was more.
The western Romance languages also borrowed thousands of words from literary Latin in the Renaissance and late Middle Ages, and many of those are the ones that Romanian later borrowed. It is the core of the languages that make them classified as "Romance", and the same applies to Romanian. The "inherited" core of Latin words is relatively small compared to the total amount of vocabulary (in all these languages), but these words represent the most common and basic vocabulary that is used the most often in normal speech. These words also underwent more change over time, naturally, than the more recent loan words.
As for Dacian... I know it sounds crazy as a Romanian to say this, but if you really study the existing facts, we simply can't say for sure that there is a direct link between Dacian words and words in Romanian. We simply assume that some of the ones that are unexplained or have similarities with Albanian must come from there. Recently some linguists are taking the position that the words were actually borrowed from Albanian after a time of close cohabitation in the past. But we just don't know because there isn't enough evidence. The Dacian language was never recorded except for some (Latinized) personal names, like Decebalus and Burebista, etc., place names, like Buridava, and a list of plants. As far as we can tell, there isn't a direct link between these and many words in Romanian.