Why is Latin Important?
為何拉丁文如此重要?

語音播放:

Latin is an extinct language. In other words, there are no native speakers of it. Latin was the language that the ancient Romans spoke, but over time it fell out of use. However, all of the Romance languages, a large group of related languages, were born from Latin. Romance languages include Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Italian.
拉丁文是一種絕跡的語言。換句話說,再也沒有以拉丁為母語的人。拉丁語是古羅馬人在使用的語言,但隨著時光流逝已不再使用。然而,所有的羅馬語系,及一系列相關語言,都源自於拉丁文。羅馬語系包含西班牙文、葡萄牙文、法文及義大利文。

語音播放:

Even though Latin is an extinct language, many people still study it in school and use it. Why is that?
儘管拉丁語是一種絕跡的語言,許多人在校時還是會學習並使用拉丁文。為什麼呢?

語音播放:

First of all, Latin has always been the preferred language of the Catholic religion. Priests often speak it in church and it is used in Vatican, where the Pope lives.
首先,拉丁文是天主教偏好使用的語言。神父常會在教堂拉丁文且在教皇居住的地方梵諦岡也還在使用。

語音播放:

But many students all over the world choose to study Latin for a variety of reasons. Since it is the mother of so many other languages, it can help you to understand where words in those languages came from. If you understand Latin grammar, it can also make grammar in those other languages seem easier. In addition, Latin is the source of many scientific, legal, and political words. Learning it can help one to understand many aspects of Western Civilization.
但世界上許多學生們研讀拉丁文的原因各有不同。因為它是許多其他語言的母語,它可以幫助你了解來自其他地方的語言。如果你了解拉丁語的語法,也可以讓其他語言的文法看起來更簡單。除此之外,拉丁文是許多科學用語、法律用語、及政治語言的源頭。學習拉丁文可以幫助一個人了解西方文明的許多面向。

Vocabulary 好字精選

1. preferred (adj) to describe something liked more than others 更好的;被喜好的;優先的
Photoshop is the preferred software of many photo editors. 
Photoshop是許多影像編輯者偏好使用的軟體。

2. priest (n) a teacher/leader in the Christian religion ﹝天主教的﹞神父
The priest talked to the church members about the importance of love.
神父和教堂成員們講述愛的重要性。

3. church (n) a building where Christians pray 教堂
Many Catholics only go to church on Sundays. 
許多天主教徒只在星期天上教堂。

4. aspect (n) part/feature 方面,觀點
There were many aspects of the theory that the students still didn’t understand.
這則理論有許多學生們還不太了解的觀點。

5. civilization (n) the society/culture of an area 文明;文明國家;文化
Ancient Egyptian civilization is a popular subject among young teens.
古埃及文明在年輕人中是一項非常受歡迎的研究主題。

Phrases and Sentence Patterns 句型解析

1. native speaker (expression) a person who learned a language from birth 母語人士
Sage’s dad is from Canada and mom is from Taiwan, so he is a native speaker of two languages.
Sage的爸爸來自於加拿大,而媽媽是台灣人,所以他是雙母語人士。

2. fall out of use (phr) to stop being used 不再使用
Many of the books in the library have fallen out of use because people nowadays prefer to read things in digital format.
圖書館中的許多書籍已不再被使用,因為現代人比較偏好閱讀電子資料。

3. in addition (phr) moreover, furthermore, also 此外
Jessica is going to travel to the South to see her grandparents this weekend. In addition, she wants to visit some hot springs there.
Jessica周末時要去南部拜訪她的祖父母。除此之外,她想要去泡那裡的溫泉。

Exercise 課後練習題

1. Taking the train is the _______________ method of transportation among my friends.
搭乘火車是我和朋友最常使用的大眾交通運輸方式。

2. Mrs. O’Connor asked the _______________ for advice about her moral problem.
O’Connor太太向神父請教關於一些道德問題的建議。

3. Going to _______________ can be a fun experience that may include singing, eating, and even dancing in some parts of the world.
上教堂可以是一種很有趣的體驗,可能包含唱歌、吃東西,甚是在世界的某些地方會跳舞

4. One ______________ of the book that Madeline liked was the way it was told like a person was dreaming the story.
Madeline喜歡這本書的另一方面是,它的述說方式就像是一個人正夢到這整個故事。

5. Chinese _______________ is among the oldest in the world.
中國文明是世界上最古老的文明。

6. The school only hires _______________ of English as teachers.
這間學校只雇用以英語為母語的老師。

7. Unfortunately, many of the world’s languages are _______________.
很不幸地,世上許多語言已經失傳了。

8. Jake’s family is moving into a new house because their old one was too small. _______________, they found that neighborhood too noisy.
Jake的家人正要搬到新家,因為他們的舊家太小間了。除此之外,他們覺得那個社區太吵雜了。

解答:
1. preferred
2. priest
3. church
4. aspect
5. civilization
6. native speakers
7. falling out of use
8. In addition

Comprehension Questions 閱讀理解

1. What is the relationship between Latin and the Romance languages? 
a. Latin is a Romance language. 
b. Latin gave birth to the Romance languages.
c. There is no relationship between them.
d. Latin is used in Western Europe while Romance languages are used in Eastern Europe.

2. Which reason is NOT mentioned that people might study Latin?
a. It is easy to learn and has simple grammar.  
b. It can help you learn other languages.
c. It is the language of the Catholic Church.
d. In can help you understand European culture.

解答:

1. 拉丁語和羅馬語系的關聯為以下何者?
a. 拉丁語是羅馬語系之一。  
b. 拉丁語是羅馬語系的起源。
c. 兩者之間無關連。
d. 當東歐在使用羅馬語系時,拉丁語是西歐所在使用的語言。

2. 下列哪一項不是文章提到人們研讀拉丁語的理由?
a. 拉丁語較容易學習且文法簡單。
b. 可以幫助你學習其他種語言。
c. 是天主教所使用的語言。
d. 可以幫助你了解歐洲文化。

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