15 January 2014

[en] Today we celebrate Interlingua Day

de Ferdinand Cesarano

On this day, we appreciate Interlingua, which is the standardised version of the Romance languages.

Interlingua is understood immediately by all speakers of Romance languages, and by everyone who has studied a Romance language. In it are prototypes of words from the major Romance languages (Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, French) which have been found by the application of a rigourously scientific methodology.

And the language has Latin particles which are known to every person who went to school in a Western country. So Interlingua has the full music of a Romance language; and the Latin particles remind us that it is the current-day version of Latin.

Really, Interlingua was not so much constructed as extracted; in a sense it has always existed within the Romance languages, and was found by the organisation IALA (Internation Auxiliary Language Association) in the late 1940s. The grammar was published in 1951.

Interlingua is easy to learn because its creators wisely got rid of everything that makes learning difficult, retaining only the essential characteristics. For example, the plural ending is applied only to the noun, not to the modifying adjectives. And there is no gender to the noun in Interlingua, neither does there exist the multple verb flexions - there is only one ending in each tense.

However, there does exist one important naturalistic characteristic: some verbs have a second stem. This second stem appears in the past participle; and from this second stem are formed the derived nouns and adjectives.

There is a striking analogy to a Romance-language country in which there are many local variants: in such a country, everyone speaks his/her local dialect, and also the national standard. By analogy, Interlingua is the global standard; it is the language of that which Interlinguans call 'Romania'. (This refers not to the eastern European country, but to the Romance-speaking world.) And the other Romance languages are local dialects of Interlingua.

So I recommend that everyone who speaks a Romance language to any degree learn Interlingua.

Happy Interlingua Day!