About LLS:

Throughout my career, I have received thousands of questions regarding languages and I have finally decided to answer them objectively with no strings attached. If you have any questions or feedback, please leave your comments below.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Latin, Germanic and Ancient Greek! What for? I am not a priest!

Learning Latin and Ancient Greek are perhaps one of those things you believe belong in realm of religion, law and medicine, but it couldn't be further from the truth. The reason I recommend learning a solid foundation of Latin and Ancient Greek is that it will help you learn other languages and especially improve your academic grades in whatever field of study you decide to pursue.

In the end, if we break down what going to school means, it would all amass to learning words of a certain field. When you study economics, you literally go to school to learn new words and their definitions. The summation of all those words compiles into what we could term "knowledge in economics". Wouldn't it be easier to learn all those fancy words and definitions if you could guess their meaning without actually having to read about them?

You probably recognize many words above.

You are no doctor, but could you guess what "Hypothermia" or perhaps "Eosinophilia Esophagitis" means?

Let's break it down:

Hypo means under
Thermia means temperature

Eosinophilic Esophagitis:

Eosin - A known chemical
Philic - love, like
Eosinophil (White blood cells)
Esophagus - stomach
itis - inflammation of (redness, pain, and swelling)

Let’s try in the world of Law:

Ad hoc - for this
Per annum - yearly

Maybe in the world of history:

A.D Anno Dominium - The year of the lord
AM Ante Meridiem - Before the meridiem (half of the day)
PM Post Meridiem - After............

In the world of finance:

Inflation - Towards blowing
Depression - Pushing down

In the English language:

Hard (In Swedish, Norwegian, German; very similar hård)
Demi (Half) God (In Swedish, Norwegian, German: Halv Gott & so on...)
Hippopotamus meaning Under(Hypo) the River(Potamus)

Latin is the basis of most European languages; mainly French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Greek and it serves as the backbone for most Nordic and Slavic Languages. Any person who wishes to gain knowledge throughout his life should know the basic Latin, Germanic, and Greek:


now you ask, where am I supposed to learn all this? Well it’s quite simple; whenever you learn a word, try to break it down into pieces. Consider having a short course of Latin or Greek in order to grasp the main essence and about 200 words. Attempt to learn languages of the same family as yours or perhaps venture into the unknown.

Here is a very interesting list. Take your time, because it’s worth reading:




A final word. If you are able to master all those basics, you can expect your future academic studies to improve in whichever field you wish to pursue. Knowledge is made of words, let’s not memorize everything, logic and roots will make it easier for us in the end.

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LanguageLearningShortcuts! by Peter Masalski is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at http://languagelearningshortcuts.blogspot.com/.
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