You may have heard of Spanish referred to as a Romance language, but what does that actually mean? It’s nothing to do with romance with a small r in the sense of being romantic (though the word has the same root, and many do think that Spanish does sound very romantic!), but rather it derives from Roman – the Romance languages are those that have their origins in the spoken Latin of Roman times.
The Romance languages evolved between the 6th and 9th centuries after the fall of the Roman Empire. They include French, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian and Romansch (spoken in parts of Switzerland), but by far the most widely-spoken of the Romance languages is Spanish, with an estimated 410 million native speakers worldwide. English is not a Romance language because, while it does have many words derived from Latin, it is more heavily influenced by Northern European languages, and as such is classed as Germanic. That doesn’t mean, however, that you won’t recognise a single word as a beginner in Spanish. They may belong to different families but our two languages share as many as 40% of words from the same root and with similar meanings – called cognates – which makes learning Spanish much easier than tackling a completely unrelated language. They also form sentences in much the same way.
Here at Lingua Clinic, a private tutor will guide you every step of the way through your Spanish journey. We offer Spanish tuition in London in several different formats. You can choose private, group or intensive lessons, depending on your personal preferences and learning objectives. We cater for all levels of learners and can fit around your busy schedule. So say ¡Feliz año nuevo! and make Spanish your resolution for 2015.