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Note removed[edit]

languages suffered in that no other language uses some of the characters that they use everyday. e.g. The estset in German (usually replaced with the capital beta character), Polish, etc

I'm not entirely sure what to do with this note. It is strictly true, but I think the objection has at least as much to do with Zamenhof being gratuitously different (for example, he could easily have used hačeks on many of the letters, a diacritic he would certainly have had access to from eastern European printers) as it does to computer character sets. (Don't forget, printers had much the same problem; it's hardly a computer issue, and it's a great deal more expensive to reimplement a metal typeface than a computer font.) EVDebs 18:44, 23 May 2008 (EDT)

Vir- prefix[edit]

I briefly attempted to learn Esperanto many years ago, before growing bored with it. I recall that in addition to the feminine -ino suffix, there was a masculine vir- prefix. So for example, a female cat is katino and a male cat is virkato. Is this ever accounted for in the claims of sexism? Is the vir- prefix considered non-standard like the -icho suffix? 02:04, 1 October 2008 (EDT)

I dunno, but I could never figure out why various nouns in French were masc. or fem. They just "were". It always made me thing that maybe English was slightly less sexist than the other Eurotongues. Why the hell would Esperanto continue the m/f noun silliness? Perhaps because it is silly? ħumanUser talk:Human 02:12, 1 October 2008 (EDT)
I don't know if there's been much written for the popular audience on the origins of grammatical gender -- it does seem to date to very, very early times in human language. I would guess, though, that while it might once have had some semantic meaning, it had almost certainly lost it by the time the first written languages appeared, meaning that it looks almost entirely arbitrary in modern languages. (It's thought, actually, that English lost grammatical gender because the influx of Norse (and later French) speakers diluted the gender system in English enough to make it pointless to learn.) Gender in Esperanto actually has a more concrete meaning, and I would imagine that Zamenhof would have considered vir- to be redundant in most cases except where an ambiguity existed, since most Esperanto nouns referring to animate objects are assumed to be male except as the context states to the contrary. I don't know what, if anything, Zamenhof was trying to accomplish with this; more likely it was just 19th-century gender relations. (You'll note that despite developments to the contrary, many people still insist that the masculine incorporates both (all?) genders. You'll also notice that the word "guy" is assumed to be masculine in English, but "guys" is often gender-neutral and can seamlessly be used to address a group of women.) EVDebs 02:54, 3 October 2008 (EDT)
In Proto-Indo-European (the ancient language nearly all European/Some Indic languages, such as Greek, English, German, French, Hindi, Punjabi, Russian, etc...yes, English is related to Punjabi and Hindi), the original system was one of animacy and inanimacy (basically, things that were alive/moved versus things that didn't move/weren't alive. Since the original Proto-Indo-Europeans weren't scientists, some of the words were assigned...odd genders). Anyway, eventually the animate class split into masculine and feminine genders. The reason why gender exists? No one's quite sure, but it seems to allow for more logical and consistent grammar (which it does, it's just that it's hard to get used to unless you speak a language with gender natively).user:Astor

Line out[edit]

At the moment a number of words are lined out which isn't usual here. If they are wrong shouldn't they be removed, or am I missing something more subtle?--Bobbing up 05:14, 9 October 2008 (EDT)

I dunno - usually we do that for snark - haven't checked the article though... ħumanUser talk:Human 05:18, 9 October 2008 (EDT)
Oh, I see. yeah, our new friend was improving, I think, but instead of removing or rewording what they thought was wrong, they just struck the words out. Not sure why, yes, it needs to be fixed. ħumanUser talk:Human 15:40, 9 October 2008 (EDT)
Two years later, no sign of "our new friend", and the footnotes still stand. No experts here to verify the claims? --ZooGuard (talk) 08:11, 18 August 2010 (UTC)
Calling Eira! She's one of our language experts... ħumanUser talk:Human 08:17, 18 August 2010 (UTC)
Calling someone out, would be better done on their Talk page. ;) But I found this. The paragraph was generally just poorly written in the first place. Esperanto shares little in common with any other language tree other than the Indo-European tree. The prefix system is Classical (meaning Latin/Greek), the tense and verbal grammar is all heavily Romance (meaning the language derived from Latin), and the vocabulary is heavily English/Latin (which is to say, English). The preposition, and conjunction system is deeply Classical. The demonstrative pronoun system as well is deeply effected by Latin. There is none of the morphology of the Semitic systems (where related concepts share base consonants, with generative vowel placement), or isolating Sino-typical systems (where ideographs rule the day, because the language treats morphemes as immutable isolates), or the Fino-Ugric case system (which replaces most of the prepositions). Most of our "friend's" comments lacked credible backing. They were "true" criticism, in that we were off the mark, but were not true in the sense that they presented incorrect information. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 23:16, 19 August 2010 (UTC)

As I recall...[edit]

Isn't Klingon more widely spoken than Esperanto? I'm sure I've heard that before. King Skeleton (talk) 14:36, 17 October 2014 (UTC)

I doubt it. Klingon is deliberately obtuse, while Esperanto (in theory) is supposed to be easy and pronounceable. I would also argue that Klingon speak has a much less international spread than Klingon.-Albannach (talk) 14:46, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
Such claims are probably intended to mock Esperantists. The best estimates are that fluent Klingon speakers number in the dozens, versus over a million for Esperanto. (talk) 23:21, 24 November 2014 (UTC)
It depends on how you rate fluency. If you count anyone who's ever bought an Esperanto textbook you would get tens of millions currently. But if you count those who stuck with it or those who took all three levels of standardized Internacia Esperanto Asocio examinations (the third one having to do with original literature in Esperanto) you would get far fewer. Dracopol (talk) 02:55, 27 April 2021 (UTC)

Pervasive sexism[edit]

The -in suffix (like all others in the language) was created to simplify the vocabulary, nothing else. If you know the word for 'king' you don't need to learn a new word for 'queen', for instance; likewise -id for offspring - if you know the word for 'cat', you don't need a new one for 'kitten', etc. The whole system of prefixes and suffixes is one of the aspects that makes the language much easier to learn and use. Retrospectively deciding that one particular suffix is "sexist" and creating new ones to help avoid offending people just undoes some of that good work and makes the language more difficult, unfortunately. A comment regarding "m/f nonsense" as found in natural languages such as French or German misses the point, as the "m/f nonsense" in most natural languages reflects grammatical gender, requiring additional learning of which articles to use, different forms of adjectives, case endings, etc., etc., none of which applies in Esperanto. — Unsigned, by: Translateltd / talk / contribs 19:08, 7 January 2015

You don't need a word for king and queen, you only need a word for a royal monarch. The problem is not that there is a system for assigning genders at all, but that every word is automatically assumed to be male, with female being just a variation, it goes so far that you get things like "patro" and "patrino". There are ways to do it easier, you could even use neutral words only, with only a word for "parent", "sibling" etc. - it works with cousin in modern english. If REALLY necessary you can just say "male parent" or "female parent", odd in english, but still better than unfortunate constructions like "unlarge" and "unwarm". Many problems with Esperanto would be easy to fix, but the community suffers from the delusion that their language is somehow perfect, to the point they even refused improvements by Zamenhof himself. An auxlang that refuses to correct anything and has become too conservative and solid is doomed to fail in the long run (the other, more important, reason is that they're useless to learn, if you could learn the natural lingua franca instead). The only reason Esperanto became successful is because it was one of the first and had a good momentum at the start, not because it's the best (hell, after Volapük it's pretty much the second worst auxlang out there). Catoblepas (talk) 11:35, 17 May 2015 (UTC)

My edits[edit]

I don't want to come off as an Esperanto fanboy here, I'm just trying to help you. You should probably know what you're talking about if you're going to do criticize something... it seems like a lot of past editors of this article not only don't understand the subject of criticism, but they also don't understand their reference points (Chinese, Arabic, French, English, etc.) Standard Arabic, for example, has an accusative case, although in dialects it often disappears. I eliminated that language from the part about direct objects, and then I thought about the other ones... I don't think most people who have previously edited this article have any idea what they're talking about, and not just with regard to Esperanto. Iconomaniac (talk) 12:36, 21 February 2016 (UTC)


... should be mentioned as a would be Esperanto state. (talk) 22:23, 7 January 2017 (UTC)

Gateway language?[edit]

It's well established how debatably easy Esperanto is to learn compared to other "living" languages, but I've seen claims that it can aid you in learning a third language, similar to how schools with Music class taught you the recorder to make it easier to play another, actually used instrument. I feel a section would be nice on that, due to many groups pushing that belief on skeptical would-be Esperantists.--Spoony (talk) 04:22, 12 July 2017 (UTC)

It is basically the same argument used to push Latin in schools (with the difference that Latin is the root language of many major European languages and the origin of a lot of English vocabulary... Along with the ability to read very old books.) Esperanto has the advantage over Latin here because its grammar is less fearsome than Latin but its choice of wordstock is odd to say the least
By the way, recorders are used in classical music. Maybe not as much as pianos or violins,but there are some pretty good pieces out there for serious recorder players to get their teeth into.-Albannach (talk) 11:02, 3 December 2020 (UTC)

will someone write this article in esperanto?[edit]

just for the lulz, obviosly.

nah, it's more of a passive aggressive stance, not of a rationalizing order. (talk) 09:37, 2 November 2019 (UTC)

{It's been translated into Esperanto already. Spud (talk) 09:43, 2 November 2019 (UTC)