Opinions on Italic languages

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The Italic languages are a subfamily of the Indo-European language family originally spoken by Italic peoples. They include the Romance languages derived from Latin (Italian, Spanish, Catalan, Portuguese, Galician, French, Romanian, Occitan, etc.), a number of extinct languages of the Italian Peninsula, including Umbrian, Oscan, Faliscan, South Picene, and Latin itself. At present, Latin and its daughter Romance languages are the only surviving languages of the Italic language family.

In the past various definitions of "Italic" have prevailed. This article uses the classification presented by the Linguist List: Italic includes the Latin subgroup (Latin and the Romance languages) as well as the ancient Italic languages (Faliscan, Osco-Umbrian and two unclassified Italic languages, Aequian and Vestinian). Venetic (the language of the ancient Veneti), as revealed by its inscriptions, shared some similarities with the Italic languages and is sometimes classified as Italic. However, since it also shares similarities with other Western Indo-European branches (particularly Celtic languages and Germanic languages), some linguists prefer to consider it an independent Indo-European language.

In the extreme view, Italic did not exist, but the different groups descended directly from Indo-European and converged because of geographic contiguity. This view stems in part from the difficulty in identifying a common Italic homeland in prehistory.

In the intermediate view, the Italic languages are one of the ten or eleven major subgroups of the Indo-European language family and might therefore have had an ancestor, Common Italic or Proto-Italic, from which its daughter languages descend. Moreover, there are similarities between major groups, although how these similarities are to be interpreted is one of the major debatable issues in the historical linguistics of Indo-European. The linguist Calvert Watkins went so far as to suggest, among ten major groups, a four-way division of East, West, North and South Indo-European. These he considered "dialectical divisions within Proto-Indo-European which go back to a period long before the speakers arrived in their historical areas of attestation." This is not to be considered a nodular grouping; in other words, there was not necessarily any common west Indo-European serving as a node from which the subgroups branched, but rather a hypothesized similarity between the dialects of Proto-Indo-European which developed into the recognized families.


In the image below, you can see a graph with the evolution of the times that people look for Italic languages. And below it, you can see how many pieces of news have been created about Italic languages in the last years.
Thanks to this graph, we can see the interest Italic languages has and the evolution of its popularity.

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