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Why it's important to keep the Welsh language alive?

Keeping the Welsh language alive and flourishing is important to Welsh people for a variety of reasons. The Welsh language is an integral part of Welsh culture and identity, and its preservation is seen as vital to maintaining Wales' distinct heritage.

One of the primary reasons why the Welsh language is important is because it helps to preserve Welsh history and culture. The Welsh language is closely tied to Wales' rich literary tradition, which includes the works of famous poets such as Dylan Thomas and R.S. Thomas. By preserving the Welsh language, Welsh people are able to connect with their past and continue to celebrate the unique heritage of their country.

Additionally, the Welsh language plays a key role in promoting social cohesion and community spirit within Wales. The Welsh language is spoken by people from all walks of life and is seen as a unifying force that brings people together. This is particularly important in a country like Wales, which has a diverse population made up of people from different cultural backgrounds.

Keeping the Welsh language alive is also important for practical reasons. Welsh is an official language of Wales, and many public services in the country are required to provide services in both Welsh and English. By ensuring that Welsh is preserved and continues to be spoken, Welsh people are able to fully participate in public life and access important services.

Finally, the Welsh language is important because it is a matter of linguistic and cultural diversity. The world is home to many different languages and cultures, and preserving these diverse traditions helps to enrich our collective human experience. By saving the Welsh language, Welsh people are able to contribute to this diversity and ensure that their unique heritage continues to be celebrated and valued for generations to come.

The History

The Welsh language, or Cymraeg, is a Celtic language spoken by approximately 870,000 people in Wales and other parts of the world. The history of the Welsh language is a rich and complex one that stretches back over 1,500 years.

The Welsh language has its roots in the Brythonic language spoken by the Celtic tribes that inhabited Britain before the Roman invasion. Over time, the Brythonic language evolved into several distinct languages, including Welsh, Cornish, and Breton.

The earliest known written examples of Welsh date back to the 6th century. These were inscriptions on stones and in manuscripts, which show that the language was already well established by this time. The oldest known Welsh poetry, the Y Gododdin, was also written in the 6th century.

During the Middle Ages, Welsh literature flourished, with many notable works being produced. The most famous of these is the Mabinogion, a collection of medieval Welsh tales that include the story of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

However, the Welsh language faced challenges in the centuries that followed. The English language became increasingly dominant, and the Welsh language was suppressed in many areas of Wales. This suppression was particularly severe during the 19th and early 20th centuries when the Welsh Not, a piece of wood or metal, was used to punish children who spoke Welsh in school.

Despite this suppression, the Welsh language persisted, and a revival began in the late 20th century. In 1967, the Welsh Language Society was established, which campaigned for the rights of Welsh speakers. This was followed by the creation of S4C, the Welsh-language television channel, in 1982.

Today, the Welsh language is experiencing a resurgence, with increasing numbers of people choosing to learn and speak the language. In 2011, the Welsh government passed the Welsh Language Measure, which aims to ensure that the Welsh language continues to thrive and be used in everyday life.

The Welsh language is an important part of Welsh identity and culture, and its history is a testament to the resilience and determination of the Welsh people. Its survival and revival are a cause for celebration and a reminder of the importance of language and culture in shaping our identities and communities.

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