French Language – Evolution and Protection of the Language From France

French is an old language which has seen a great deal of evolution through the centuries much like the English language. Today, there are actually two main classifications of the French language which is old French (ancien français) and modern French (français modern). One of the oldest official documents in the French language goes back to 842.

Modern French can be trace back to the 17th century, but this is not to say that people in France speak French the same way it was spoken some 400 years ago. Languages change over time.

The famous Académie Française which was created by Richelieu for the main purpose of protecting the French language against foreign influences and degradation of the language itself, is working hard to preserve a good spoken French. The official body of 40 members was and still is in control of the evolution of French language, especially today, protecting against English terms which have been trying to invade the language in the past fifty years. For example, an expression such as “week end” has become the everyday expression used when referring to Saturday and Sunday.

New words such as email and software have their equivalent in the French language and people are encouraged to use them rather than their English counterparts.

The Académie Française is also protecting the language against argot words or common street word trying to become official words that will show up in dictionaries. However, this has been the case in the past where words that would have been considered incorrect or not proper are now not only acceptable now, but found in French dictionaries.

Languages are alive and changing just like people speaking them. However, it is the duty of institutions such as the Académie Française to make sure the language is protected against an evolution that would be harmful for the preservation of it.

Source by Sylviane N.

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