Hello world!

Since my childhood I was fascinated by the fact that some people can speak several languages. The idea of expressing thoughts in different language in words that do not exist in my native Russian language was so great, that it predetestined my future as linguist. I wanted to see colors, that have no names in my language and taste flavours that do not exist in my language. I come from Ukraine, a country where to be bilingual (Ukrainian and Russian) is not a matter of desire, it is necessity. The region where I spent 24 years of my life, Crimea, has always been on the crossroad of civilizations. Peaceful co-existance of many people speaking different languages determined the integrity of the Crimean culture.  Islamic and Christian cultures in Crimea intertwined so much, that they became truly inseparable. I will never forget my Crimean Tatar scientific advisor’s words, who truly believed that ruins of the ancient Greek theatre built in whereabouts of  Sevastopol over 2,000 years ago is a part of the cultural heritage of Crimean Tatars, the indigenious people of Turkic origin. Language is a mirror that projects the experience of our ancestors. In Crimea we have people, who call themsleves “Krymchaks”. These are people of Turkic origin profesing some form of Judaism. Unfortunately, Nazis have exterminated the majority of Krymchaks, whom they believed to be Jews. Krymchaks speak a beautiful Turkic language. Do you know how “pregnant” is translated into Krymchak? “Eki janli”. It means “with two souls”! Russians use the word “беременная”, which is a derivative from the word “бремя” (burden). Once I have learned the Krymchak translation I would never view “pregnant” woman as the one with burden. No, no way! For me, pregnant woman is the one with two souls.  Such a small word has such a deep concept. This is a true cultural heritage, a wisdom that will vanish once the last Krymchak speaker dies. I was sad to learn that the number of Krymchak speakers amounts to,maybe, a couple of dozens. This language is doomed to die, I thought. Is there anything we can do about preserving dying languages? It is very easy, after all. We should speak them. Any language is alive if it is spoken. My blog is dedicated to the endangered languages and here we talk about what we can do about preserving and maintaing them.  If you want to share your knowledge and impressions, do not hesitate to contact me.


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