Fr.: langue analytique
A language that is characterized largely by the fact that it depends on word order, rather than on inflections (grammatical endings), to convey sentence meanings. In an analytic language relations between nouns and adjectives are expressed using prepositions. English and (to a lesser extent) French, and Persian are considered analytic languages, while German and Russian are → synthetic languages.
Fr.: langue artificielle
An artificially created language system for international communication or for a specific intellectual or scientific purpose. Examples include Esperanto, computer programing languages, → symbolic logic, and → tensor analysis.
Fr.: langage formel
A language designed for use in situations in which natural language is unsuitable, as for example in → mathematics, → logic, or → computer → programming. The symbols and formulas of such languages stand in precisely specified syntactic and semantic relations to one another (Dictionary.com).
Any means of conveying or communicating ideas; specifically, human speech.
M.E., from O.Fr. langage, from L. lingua "tongue; speech, language."
Zabân "tongue; language," from Mid.Pers. uzwân "tongue; language;" O.Pers. hzanm, hizânam "tongue," Av. hizuua-, hizū- "tongue;" cf. Skt. jivhā- "tongue;" L. lingua "tongue, speech, language;" O.Ir. tenge; Welsh tafod; Lith. liezuvis; O.C.S. jezyku; M.Du. tonghe; Du. tong; O.H.G. zunga; Ger. Zunge; Goth. tuggo; PIE base *dnghwa-.
Fr.: paléontologie linguistique
An approach in which terms reconstructed in the → proto-language are used to make inferences about its speakers' culture and environment.
Any language that is used to describe a language. See also → object language.
Fr.: langage naturel
Fr.: langue objet
Any language described by a → metalanguage. For example, the sentence "In Persian, the word setâré means "star" " is part of a metalanguage (here, English), and the language described (namely Persian) is an object language. Metalanguage and object language may be identical.
The hypothetical and typically extinct language which is believed to be the ancestor of a group of languages of the same family. Historical linguistics uses comparative study of the languages of a family to reconstruct the ancestral language even though in most cases it was never recorded. Some examples are → Proto-Indo-European, Proto-Germanic, Proto-Romance, Proto-Sino-Tibetan, etc.
Fr.: langue synthétique
A language in which the phrase meaning is determined by case endings of individual words and not by the relation between the words. Old English was a highly synthetic language. Compare with → analytic language.