Since Spanish, Italian and French languages are all Romance Languages, which one of them is the most similar one to Classical Latin?

I found this Diagram of the Romance Languages on Wikipedia.

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2 Answers 2


Answer to my question:

Here it is answered on this article:

The final result turned from points into percentages of change, permits us to state that on the basis of our tentative point-system the percentage of stressedvowel change from the original Latin for each of the seven languages is as follows: French, 44%; Portuguese, 31%; Proven~al, 25%; Rumanian, 23!%; Spanish, 20%; Italian, 12%; Sardinian, 8%.

So as a result we can say Italian is the most similar one and then Spanish.

  • 3
    What happened to Sardinian?
    – b a
    Jul 3, 2020 at 9:41
  • 1
    You're right, I didn't read the question closely enough
    – b a
    Jul 3, 2020 at 11:08
  • 9
    Phonetically similar. This does not mean that they are in the same order of similarity in terms of grammar and vocabulary.
    – Roger V.
    Mar 9, 2023 at 13:47
  • 3
    Did you want to edit your question or answer? You've ticked yourself but they don't actually match. Vowel stress is among the least important possible considerations for which one is 'most like' Classical Latin in any meaningful sense, even if it's fairly easy to quantify.
    – lly
    Jun 15, 2023 at 20:41
  • 1
    @Nabla You could also change the question to match the answer.
    – cmw
    Jun 29, 2023 at 14:53

Which languages are closer HOW…by what metric?? Etymologically? Grammatically? Phonetically (in terms of pronunciation)? I would guess that etymologically, and perhaps phonetically, some variety of Italian (perhaps Sardinian), of which there are many, would be the answer. In an overarching grammatical sense, however, one might say that Greek or German is closer to Latin than is Spanish or Italian. This is because German and Greek, as Latin was, are rather synthetic languages (they inflect nouns and adjectives to render grammatical meaning), while all the “daughter languages” such as Italian and Spanish, have lost most of their synthetic qualities and are now rather analytical languages like English. This makes a huge difference in the grammatical nature of a language, and is one of the reasons why German speaking learners often have a much easier time in picking up Latin grammar than do their English speaking counterparts…they already know, in a conceptual way, how to inflect words for particular meanings.

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