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More Roman Soldier Whinging In Brittania


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#1 Ivanhoe

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 2330 PM

http://www.dailymail...overed-pit.html

 

A hoard of 25 personal letters and lists has been discovered near Hardian's Wall after they were discarded during the 1st Century AD.

The ink documents were found several metres down in damp earth at the Roman fort of Vindolanda in Northumberland.

One of the letters was written by a man called Masclus, who is best known for a previous letter to his Commanding Officers asking for more beer, this time asking for leave from work.

These incredibly rare and fragile wafer-thin pieces of wood are often less than 2mm in thickness and about the size of modern day postcards.

Experts believe the tablets, which have been preserved in anaerobic soils, were written between 85-92 AD. 

 

Had a sort of Hollywood alt-history thought, a mashup of reality and fiction. Lets say good ol' Masclus turned out to be an immortal. If he left the legion and settled in Britain, Gaul, or wherever, within a few centuries Latin would have died out as a living language. From a neuroscience standpoint, if Masclus had learned Saxon as it developed, then Old English, then  Middle English etc., after say 100 years of not having spoken or heard working Roman Latin, would Masclus still understand it? My extremely limited understanding of how the brain works is that all that brain circuitry tends to deteriorate unless refreshed, and learning a new language might "overwrite" some pathways that would erase part of past lingual abilities.



#2 Yama

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Posted 11 July 2017 - 0137 AM

Unless immortality also grants Masclus improved memory circuits, within 100 years he would forget most of the Latin save very basics. My grandparent, a native Saami speaker, forgot much of it after decades of living amongst Finnish speakers.

#3 DougRichards

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Posted 11 July 2017 - 0522 AM

http://www.dailymail...overed-pit.html

 

A hoard of 25 personal letters and lists has been discovered near Hardian's Wall after they were discarded during the 1st Century AD.

The ink documents were found several metres down in damp earth at the Roman fort of Vindolanda in Northumberland.

One of the letters was written by a man called Masclus, who is best known for a previous letter to his Commanding Officers asking for more beer, this time asking for leave from work.

These incredibly rare and fragile wafer-thin pieces of wood are often less than 2mm in thickness and about the size of modern day postcards.

Experts believe the tablets, which have been preserved in anaerobic soils, were written between 85-92 AD. 

 

Had a sort of Hollywood alt-history thought, a mashup of reality and fiction. Lets say good ol' Masclus turned out to be an immortal. If he left the legion and settled in Britain, Gaul, or wherever, within a few centuries Latin would have died out as a living language. From a neuroscience standpoint, if Masclus had learned Saxon as it developed, then Old English, then  Middle English etc., after say 100 years of not having spoken or heard working Roman Latin, would Masclus still understand it? My extremely limited understanding of how the brain works is that all that brain circuitry tends to deteriorate unless refreshed, and learning a new language might "overwrite" some pathways that would erase part of past lingual abilities.

 

Until of course Latin was re-introduced by those of the church of rome around 900 AD or so.  The latin words that still linger in English do not come from the Romans, but from the missionaries.  Some latin words commuted over from 'latin' languages, such as Spanish and Italian, and maybe from Norman French.



#4 Ivanhoe

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Posted 11 July 2017 - 0720 AM

Unless immortality also grants Masclus improved memory circuits, within 100 years he would forget most of the Latin save very basics. My grandparent, a native Saami speaker, forgot much of it after decades of living amongst Finnish speakers.

 

Perfect example. That's what I was thinking.



#5 Ivanhoe

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Posted 11 July 2017 - 0726 AM

 

http://www.dailymail...overed-pit.html

 

A hoard of 25 personal letters and lists has been discovered near Hardian's Wall after they were discarded during the 1st Century AD.

The ink documents were found several metres down in damp earth at the Roman fort of Vindolanda in Northumberland.

One of the letters was written by a man called Masclus, who is best known for a previous letter to his Commanding Officers asking for more beer, this time asking for leave from work.

These incredibly rare and fragile wafer-thin pieces of wood are often less than 2mm in thickness and about the size of modern day postcards.

Experts believe the tablets, which have been preserved in anaerobic soils, were written between 85-92 AD. 

 

Had a sort of Hollywood alt-history thought, a mashup of reality and fiction. Lets say good ol' Masclus turned out to be an immortal. If he left the legion and settled in Britain, Gaul, or wherever, within a few centuries Latin would have died out as a living language. From a neuroscience standpoint, if Masclus had learned Saxon as it developed, then Old English, then  Middle English etc., after say 100 years of not having spoken or heard working Roman Latin, would Masclus still understand it? My extremely limited understanding of how the brain works is that all that brain circuitry tends to deteriorate unless refreshed, and learning a new language might "overwrite" some pathways that would erase part of past lingual abilities.

 

Until of course Latin was re-introduced by those of the church of rome around 900 AD or so.  The latin words that still linger in English do not come from the Romans, but from the missionaries.  Some latin words commuted over from 'latin' languages, such as Spanish and Italian, and maybe from Norman French.

 

 

Was Latin of the early church consistent with the Latin as spoken/written by Romans? I am thinking of the example of ancient Greek vs modern Greek, likewise Old English vs modern, etc. Hmm, it occurs to me that Latin, more than any other language of the AD millennia, has been driven by written forms as much or more than spoken.

 

Getting back to Masclus, I wonder what the literacy rates were for the legions. With such a far-flung empire and Rome's enthusiasm for organization, it would have been to Rome's substantial advantage to have lots of soldiers in the org chart be able to read and write.



#6 toysoldier

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Posted 11 July 2017 - 0739 AM

The phenomenon even has its own wiki page

https://en.wikipedia...guage_attrition



#7 Ivanhoe

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Posted 11 July 2017 - 0821 AM

Kewl. The brain is an amazing thing, I assume some of those mental circuit components get re-purposed if unused, like an electrical engineer's breadboard.



#8 Adam_S

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 0239 AM



 



 



http://www.dailymail...overed-pit.html

 


A hoard of 25 personal letters and lists has been discovered near Hardian's Wall after they were discarded during the 1st Century AD.

The ink documents were found several metres down in damp earth at the Roman fort of Vindolanda in Northumberland.

One of the letters was written by a man called Masclus, who is best known for a previous letter to his Commanding Officers asking for more beer, this time asking for leave from work.

These incredibly rare and fragile wafer-thin pieces of wood are often less than 2mm in thickness and about the size of modern day postcards.

Experts believe the tablets, which have been preserved in anaerobic soils, were written between 85-92 AD. 

 

Had a sort of Hollywood alt-history thought, a mashup of reality and fiction. Lets say good ol' Masclus turned out to be an immortal. If he left the legion and settled in Britain, Gaul, or wherever, within a few centuries Latin would have died out as a living language. From a neuroscience standpoint, if Masclus had learned Saxon as it developed, then Old English, then  Middle English etc., after say 100 years of not having spoken or heard working Roman Latin, would Masclus still understand it? My extremely limited understanding of how the brain works is that all that brain circuitry tends to deteriorate unless refreshed, and learning a new language might "overwrite" some pathways that would erase part of past lingual abilities.

 

Until of course Latin was re-introduced by those of the church of rome around 900 AD or so.  The latin words that still linger in English do not come from the Romans, but from the missionaries.  Some latin words commuted over from 'latin' languages, such as Spanish and Italian, and maybe from Norman French.

 

 

Was Latin of the early church consistent with the Latin as spoken/written by Romans? I am thinking of the example of ancient Greek vs modern Greek, likewise Old English vs modern, etc. Hmm, it occurs to me that Latin, more than any other language of the AD millennia, has been driven by written forms as much or more than spoken.

 

 

https://en.wikipedia...siastical_Latin

 

There are some differences between the two, particularly in terms of pronunciation.

 

Another possible source of Latin words in English is that French is also influenced by Latin and there are many French derived words in English.



#9 Adam_S

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 0241 AM

Unless immortality also grants Masclus improved memory circuits, within 100 years he would forget most of the Latin save very basics. My grandparent, a native Saami speaker, forgot much of it after decades of living amongst Finnish speakers.

 

I was compelled to learn Latin at school and was fairly decent at it. I can't remember a bloody word of it now.



#10 RETAC21

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 0538 AM

Not even Alea Jacta est???



#11 Panzermann

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 1034 AM

 

Unless immortality also grants Masclus improved memory circuits, within 100 years he would forget most of the Latin save very basics. My grandparent, a native Saami speaker, forgot much of it after decades of living amongst Finnish speakers.

 

I was compelled to learn Latin at school and was fairly decent at it. I can't remember a bloody word of it now.

 

 

In my experience it comes back with a bit of practice. In my case I believe I cannot remember a word of spanish, because of a lack of speakiing. But when in spain it works. Somehow. Definitely not good, but enough to not talk by shouting loud at all those foreigners. ;)



#12 toysoldier

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Posted 15 July 2017 - 0837 AM

 

 

Unless immortality also grants Masclus improved memory circuits, within 100 years he would forget most of the Latin save very basics. My grandparent, a native Saami speaker, forgot much of it after decades of living amongst Finnish speakers.

 

I was compelled to learn Latin at school and was fairly decent at it. I can't remember a bloody word of it now.

 

 

In my experience it comes back with a bit of practice. In my case I believe I cannot remember a word of spanish, because of a lack of speakiing. But when in spain it works. Somehow. Definitely not good, but enough to not talk by shouting loud at all those foreigners. ;)

 

 

For some reason not yet discovered, many of the best hispanists ever were Germans :blink:  maybe there´s some hidden commonality that makes it easier for you guys to get the 100 verbal forms and all the affixes and the subordinates and the capricious grammatical gender...



#13 Brian Kennedy

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Posted 15 July 2017 - 0938 AM

Spanish is so much easier than English -- you have to deal with the male/female noun stuff, but all the words are spelled sensibly.



#14 mnm

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Posted 15 July 2017 - 1924 PM

Simple language for simple people.



Now run !!!

#15 toysoldier

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Posted 16 July 2017 - 0131 AM

Simple language for simple people.
Now run !!!

Meh. That's just the "ñ envy" speaking.

#16 Markus Becker

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 1023 AM

Not even Alea Jacta est???

 

Veni, vidi, victus sum.  

 

 

BTW: If he was immortal, we'd find him among the guys who started the trade union movement. ;)



#17 Adam_S

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 0052 AM

Romani ite domum!



#18 Richard Lindquist

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Posted 26 July 2017 - 0511 AM

Spanish is so much easier than English -- you have to deal with the male/female noun stuff, but all the words are spelled sensibly.

English is pronounced in accordance with the London dialect at the time and spelled in accordance with the Oxford dialect at the time.



#19 mnm

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Posted 05 August 2017 - 1826 PM

"As clerkes ben ful subtile and ful queynte,
And prively he caughte hire by the queynte,
And seyde, “Ywis, but if ich have my wille,
For deerne love of thee, lemman, I spille.”
 
People grabbing other people by the queynte in Chaucer's time, imagine that :D


#20 DougRichards

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Posted 07 August 2017 - 0528 AM

Meanwhile Mary Beard is having to dodge some unjustified pilum:

 

http://www.abc.net.a...ace-row/8780634

 

A debate about ethnic diversity in the Roman Empire boiled over into a bitter dispute that saw classical scholar, author and TV presenter Mary Beard subjected to days of "nasty" attacks on social media.

 

 

It all started with a seemingly harmless BBC cartoon intended to depict a family in Roman Britain.

DFk4UBtXUAAlyVD.jpg

 

 

 

Alt-right commentator Paul Joseph Watson posted the cartoon and questioned its historical accuracy.

 

 

"Thank God the BBC is portraying Roman Britain as ethnically diverse. I mean, who cares about historical accuracy, right?" Mr Watson wrote.

Professor Beard, an expert on Roman history, and others including historian Mike Stuchbery, piped up to say they believed the depiction to be relatively accurate.

Professor Beard cited the case of Quintus Lollius Urbicus, who was born in what is now Algeria and went on to become governor of Britain.

It was then that a barrage of abuse followed, Professor Beard said in a blog post titled Roman Britain in Black and White.

She said she had been the target of a "torrent of aggressive insults, on everything from my historical competence and elitist ivory tower viewpoint to my age, shape and gender (batty old broad, obese, etc etc)".

 

 

"The cumulative effect was just nasty."

 

 

Professor Beard said she had reported some tweets but would not block people on social media.

"It doesn't stop them tweeting, it only means that you don't see it, and it feels to me like leaving the bullies in charge of the playground."

"It's rather too much like what women have been advised to do for centuries. Don't answer back, and just turn away."

Some of the strongest criticisms aimed at Professor Beard came from essayist Nassim Nicholas Taleb who also went beyond Twitter and its 140 character restriction to unpack his perspective on the debate, in a post titled Something is Broken in the UK Intellectual Sphere.

Professor Beard said the insults were balanced out by support from others.

"It also feels very sad to me that we cannot have a reasonable discussion on such a topic as the cultural ethnic composition of Roman Britain without resorting to unnecessary insult, abuse, misogyny and language of war not debate (and that includes one senior academic)," she wrote.

"It's a bit of a bleak outlook for how we might talk about modern ethnic diversity."






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