Disputatio:Linguarum officialium catalogus

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Lingua sollemnisRecensere

[Transferred from Disputatio:Finnia, where the discussion of "caput" remains. Andrew Dalby (disputatio) 13:31, 8 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC) ]

Caput & Lingua sollemnis: I have doubts about both these expressions which are found in almost all country articles. Could anyone provide evidence for 'caput' (without any further explanation) meaning 'capital'? I think urbs princeps would be better. Same goes for lingua sollemnis. Maybe just lingua (qua publicis in rebus utuntur)? I don't doubt that Finnish is extremely sollemn, but maybe this isn't true for all official languages.--Ceylon 14:46, 7 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)

Lingua Sollemnis: I think the meaning of sollemnis here was 'in customary use'. Naturally, that means that the context is wrong for such an infobox; some languages are official but not in customary use. But it is easy to change {{Data nationis}} to a better term - whichever one we choose. Which latin term would choose to put in the box for 'official language'? (I consider Lingua qua publicis in rebus utuntur quite cumbersome...) We are using three terms at vicipaedia at the moment. Lingua sollemnis (≈bad), publica (a kind of shorter version of yours) and officialis (which I tend to use). Harrissimo 15:34, 7 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC).
Just 'lingua' would be fine I think. Mr Morgan's Lexicon, alas, is 'non iam editum' according to the link. And has he really got the power to make 'caput' mean something that it doesn't and that can't be easily guessed either (the 'head of France' - could be the president, couldn't it)? --Ceylon 15:47, 7 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)
I never knew where "lingua sollemnis" came from. But lingua alone will not do, because we certainly need to distinguish official/national languages from others (even in Finland!) In other contexts I have used lingua publica. Andrew Dalby (disputatio) 15:51, 7 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)
For 'official' (referring to the state), I've been using publicus, -a, -um. For 'in customary use', we have an array of possible terms (each with particular nuances): quotidianus, popularis, solitus, translaticius, tritus, usitatus, vulgaris; vulgō. I don't know which you'd prefer there. Sollemnis doesn't usually look apt in this sense, but maybe that's just me. As a rule, try to avoid prepositional phrases like 'in customary use' when a succinct adjective will do. IacobusAmor 16:05, 7 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)
... "Sollemnis" was the result of a long debate (which may or may not have been on-wiki; I forget, now) about how to say "official" in the modern sense meant here, as opposed to the literal sense that classical officialis would have, of qui ad officia attinent—which is not exactly the same thing. One of the other outcomes of that discussion, I know, was to use constituta in Index universitatum nominibus Latinis constitutis, which semantic choice I'm not sure applies here. —Mucius Tever 02:55, 8 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)
Re "the literal sense that classical officialis would have"—one wonders what the rationale was: Cassell's dictionary (which restricts itself to terms in general use from about 200 a.C.n. to about 100 p.C.n.) doesn't have the word, and L&S says specifically that it's postclassical. IacobusAmor 03:51, 8 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)
The rationale being the usual sense of the suffix -alis, which generally forms an adjective whose literal meaning is semantically related to the base noun. Of course the word as a whole is not classical in itself, though its elements are. —Mucius Tever 11:17, 8 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)
I must admit I usually, cravenly, avoid discussion on the choice of term for abstract concepts which the Romans did not formulate. I just wait for it to go quiet and then make use of the end result!
Here, however, since it's [one of] my professional specialities, I have a little something to add. The Romans did distinguish between languages that could be used in all official/legal contexts and those that had more limited acceptability; unfortunately, so far as I know, they did not adopt distinctive terms for the two categories. Discussion can be found, attributed to Ulpianus, quoted at Iustinianus, Digest and (I cited these passages in Language in Danger and now copy them in).
Fideicommissa quocumque sermone relinqui possunt, non solum latina vel graeca, sed etiam punica vel gallicana vel alterius cuiuscumque gentis.
Ulpianus apud Iustinianus, Digestae
Eadem an alia lingua respondeatur, nihil interest. proinde si quis latine interrogaverit, respondeatur ei graece, dummodo congruenter respondeatur, obligatio constituta est: idem per contrarium. sed utrum hoc usque ad graecum sermonem tantum protrahimus an vero et ad alium, poenum forte vel assyrium vel cuius alterius linguae, dubitari potest. et scriptura Sabini, sed et verum patitur, ut omnis sermo contineat verborum obligationem, ita tamen, ut uterque alterius linguam intellegat sive per se sive per verum interpretem.
I hoped at first that there might be justification here for Ceylon's proposal ("just lingua" for official language: in this case, the two fully official languages of the Roman Empire). Ulpian does indeed use the two terms lingua and sermo; but, infuriatingly, he seems to use them interchangeably. That's my view on re-reading these texts, anyway.
The concept of official language became more significant in late medieval/Renaissance times, but I don't know of Latin texts from that period in which it is discussed.
If we can find precedents, good. If we can't, we still need to express the concept somehow. I think, having read the discussion above, that officialis may be best: we have no rule against post-classical vocabulary, and if we use this word in this context its meaning can scarcely be mistaken. Andrew Dalby (disputatio) 13:56, 8 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)
Since "official languages" are made official by law, legitimus may be relevant. IacobusAmor 14:07, 8 Ianuarii 2008 (UTC)

Lingua Pastunica: Credo hanc esse officialem in Afghania et una Provincia Pakistaniae. 13:40, 10 Maii 2009 (UTC)

Revertere ad "Linguarum officialium catalogus".