A stake in the ground

Michael Everson everson at evertype.com
Sun Dec 6 23:28:29 CET 2009

On 6 Dec 2009, at 22:21, Doug Ewell wrote:

> I would agree that it doesn't bind us, but I suggest that it should
> guide us.  Alternatively, we need to be able to explain why "the
> overwhelming majority of 'zh' is Mandarin" justifies extlangs while  
> "the
> overwhelming majority of 'lv' is Standard Latvian" doesn't.

EVERYONE knows that written Chinese covers a variety of languages, as  
different as some of the Romance languages in some cases.

Latgalian appears to be a language somewhere intermediate between  
Latvian and Lithuanian. Whether this is a language intermediate  
between them, or a dialect of Latvian with a lot of Lithuanian  
influence, or a dialect of Lithuanian with a huge amount of Latvian  
superstrate, is not (in any of these discussions) clear.

It is not clear to me that there is a "macrolanguage" that encompasses  
Latvian and anything else.

This should be decided by LINGUISTICS -- not by possibly erroneous  
taggings by the LoC or anyone else.

Michael Everson * http://www.evertype.com/

More information about the Ietf-languages mailing list