History of the Portuguese Language

Portuguese is the most widely spoken Romance language after Spanish. It is derived from Latin, thereby creating a linguistic deal with the Galician language. It ranks 8th in terms of the overall speakers in the world and 3rd among the Europeans.

Brazilian Portuguese is spoken by approximately 150 million. Indisputably, Portuguese is one of the most melodic and soft languages existent today. The beauty of the language reflects its enterprising and dynamic culture. Filled with sailors and explorers, Portuguese has become more than just an expression of samba and lambada.

The descend of the Roman Empire and the Barbarian incursion in the 5th century gave birth to a new language differentiating itself from other Romance languages. Though Latin manuscripts during the 9th to 11th century show some glimpse of Portuguese, the language failed to earn its official status until the 14th century. However, Galician-Portuguese became the language of the lyric poetry in the Iberian Peninsula, excluding Catalonia.

This was the time when the Portuguese language reached its zenith and separated itself from the Galician dialect, maturing as a standard language in the territory of Portuguese. It became recognized as an analytic language rich in literature in the 15th century and started being used in written documents.

Over a period of time, the use of Galician-Portuguese declined as a result of the Castilian-Spanish devastation and did not see recovery until the 19th century. In the recent times, it is considered as one of the official languages of the independent community of Galicia, including Portuguese.

Past evidences state that being a Romance language, the older vocabulary of Portuguese has a Latin origin. Also, there is a considerable Arabic influence reflecting six centuries of Arabic control. Moreover, the retention of the Latin grammar forms is what differentiates Portuguese from the other Romance languages. It has a multi-faceted phonetic system covering 11 different vocalic sounds with consonants owing corresponding values to other Romance languages, with a little difference in specific consonants.

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