Everyone knows that Spanish, French, and Italian are descended from Latin, but few realize that all the oddball quirks of English have even much deeper roots.

English just passed by Old German on the way. Its real philological roots are in Old Neander. Unfortunately, there is no Middle or New Neander, just the Old. The poor Neanderthals all disappeared soon (in the geological sense) after meeting us.

But the language survived. We have Merlin to credit for this. He convinced all the fancy court at King Arthur's that "Rome was not built in a day" and their language was incomplete, too. "English is older than all of us," he continued, which we now know to be scientifically true.


Thx, Mario! The pure joy of how a language feels really is something that is insufficiently appreciated.



John Levin

Scientist. Writer. Meditator. Blue Tantrika. Mystical Rabbi. Climate & Human Rights Activist. I’m a man of few words, except when I open my mouth.