AD 3000

Nov. 6th, 2010 01:17 am
ajva: (Default)
[personal profile] ajva
In the year 3000, will the British-island language be more similar to that of 2000 than that of 2000 was to that of 1000? I rather think so. There will be plenty of neologisms over the next millennium, but unlike the 2000/1000 split, there will be primary sources that you can look at then from AD 2000 that speak aloud. I think this will make it seem more immediate and identifiable, and the language more memorable and therefore ongoingly understandable.

What do you think?

Date: 2010-11-06 02:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm going to equivocate a bit and say, it depends what you're meaning when you say 'language'.

Certainly the vocabulary is going to change dramtically - there are new words entering into the English language all the time, perhaps more than at any time in the last thousand years - both neologisms and loan words from other languages.

But because we now have a literate populace, and a fixed orthography, I don't think we will see dramatic grammatical or phonic changes, as written language does not adapt itself so quickly to 'common usage'.

Plus, to get a linguistic shift like that of the 1100s, we'd need to be conquered by a non-English speaking nation again.

Date: 2010-11-06 04:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
If there are still lots of ordinary bags-of-mostly-water style human beings on this island in the year 3000, I think you're right that their language will more closely resemble our language than ours does that of 1000. However, the scenarios where they still exist that I find most plausible are those where they are either wards of the intelligences that really run the show, or survivors of some great cataclysm.

Date: 2010-11-06 10:30 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Just because the primary sources from this historic period will contain audio does not guarantee that they will be widely used or even intelligible by the vast majority of the population. I also find it hard to extrapolate any trends out by 1000 years. About the only one I'd be prepared to put serious money on is a serious drug-resistant disease outbreak. This could, of course, have a major impact on the population of the British Isles and end up being a major factor in linguistic drift.

Date: 2010-11-06 11:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I think it's impossible to be sure. Predicting lingustic drift is like predicting the weather; short-range guessing is quite accurate, but as you reach further ahead, the accuracy diminishes sharply.

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