Which of the five romance languages here...
Which of the five romance languages here most closely resembles that of Latin? I've heard it's Romanian because of the cases but my gut tells me Italian. Does anyone know?
Like the article says, when asking a question like this you should be aware that the Romance languages developed from Vulgar Latin, not the Classical Latin which people tend to learn today.
Vulgar Latin was the language of the 'common man'- this includes the Latin spoken by Roman subjects in territories outside of Italy, and its many varieties. There were large differences in vocabulary compared to Classical Latin, marked changes in pronunciation, no neuter gender, a few less cases, different prepositions and different verb conjugations.
Late period Vulgar Latin is closer to Italian than Classical Latin is- in fact, all of the Romance Languages are more closely related to each other than they are to Classical Latin.
I'd say Italian too. Romanian has certainly preserved more grammatical features from Latin, but it sounds completely different, is spelt very differently and has an abundance of Slavic and Turkic loanwords. In Italian, on the other hand, plenty of Latin words have passed down practically unchanged. It really depends what your criteria of resemblance are: I should guess if you were to go back in time and give a Roman a modern Italian text and a Romanian text, he'd be able to glean a lot more meaning from the Italian one.
According to various studies, Italian most closely resembles Latin. Of course it also makes sense since Latin originated in what is now Italy. People say it's good to learn Latin to understand the roots of many English words. I say it's better to learn it's closest living form. Which is, of course, one of several reasons why I'm learning Italian. The biggest reason for learning it is that I fell in love with the language and continue doing so the more I learn. I highly recommend Italian!