Wolves and whores

The last post got me into thinking. Shakira is noted for tending to write her own songs, having written poems at a young age and probably more frequently than her contemporaries did at the height of her career. This increases the likelihood of her knowing what ‘she wolf’ meant in Spanish, becoming a pun as the word loba’s also used to refer to sensually attractive or provocatively dressed women.

Loba and lobo descend from Latin’s lupa and lupus, some suggested that the surname ‘Lopez’ also has the same root. It would be analogous to wolf and ‘Wolfe/Woolf’ in English. Coincidentally Wolfsbane (Loba Venenosa in Spanish and curiously enough Felina in French) is both a female werewolf accused of witchcraft and the illegitimate daughter of a prostitute.

Other writers would’ve intended it as a commentary on religious hypocrisy but the association of wolves with both witchcraft and prostitution would’ve been well-founded and known at some point in Romance-speaking countries, especially France based on what I’ve found and read. I could be reading too much into it but it makes sense. And you can read the story here.

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Female werewolf

Not entirely nonexistent but as what some suggest, it could’ve been more common in pre-modern folklore than previously believed. Not to mention that there are some languages that permit feminising of masculine terms so a female werewolf shouldn’t be too out of the ordinary and that in Estonia, there’s a wealth of lore involving female werewolves.

There certainly was a female werewolf in a Hack cartoon before but Wolfsbane got me into it. She even has a handsome mention in The Girlie Book of Werewolves. She’s a female werewolf who’s Scottish and timid from being brought up in a strict fundamentalist household. She’s often unfortunate, losing her son and stuff.

One could assert that her biological mum’s a prostitute. Which got me into thinking. The Latin (and Italian) word for she-wolf is lupa which also meant a prostitute and coming to mean something like a vixen in Spanish (loba). This is what Shakira had in mind in her song She-Wolf.

Also based on what else I’ve read, being able to turn into a wolf (and/or dog or being associated with them) is part of witchcraft in some places at some point or another. Wolfsbane being accused of witchcraft wouldn’t be too out of the ordinary in that context.

I guess I read way too much to know how and why Wolfsbane came to be this way, though it would’ve been unconscious for some writers especially if they knew any of these.

 

The task of standardising languages

Standardising languages is a really big task because it involves picking which dialect that has the most prestige, whether if it’s personal or socioeconomic (though it’s often the latter). Moreso with minority languages because there needs to be a standard for not only longtime users but also would be learners for convenience.

That also involves mandatory schooling, language centres and stricter rules to make sure it gets held up to a standard. This leads to another problem where if one dialect of a minority language gets prioritised the most, the other dialects would go extinct. But that’s going to be a predictable result of unifying and standardising such languages.

Standardising languages

When somebody standardises a language, they usually chose the dialect with the most prestige and have it turned into the main dialect for which future speakers and writers are expected to learn properly. From the spelling to the vocabulary and grammar.

This is useful not only in promoting and spreading languages but also for minority languages that need standards so that they can be taught to the next generation of speakers and users. This is already being done.

But it remains to be seen if certain languages like Sardinian can be efficiently standardised for years to come.

 

The new Roman Empire

There were recent attempts to revive the Roman Empire, most notably in WWII through Benito Mussolini’s attempted Italian Empire and colonisation of Africa. The only problem is that Italian colonisation of Africa came late especially when the Allies got the upper hand of them. But it could happen again.

At first if you don’t succeed, try again. Indeed, through the Latin Union Italy will successfully colonise the Horn of Africa and impose Italian alongside more commonly spoken languages like Oromo, Tigrinya and Amharic in lieu of other indigenous languages.

They’ll be rebellions and struggles but this time Italian colonisation of Africa is really successful due to a more dictatorial regime under the Latin Union. The Latin Union will not only replace the Catholic church but also emulate prior fascist regimes as well as the Roman Empire proper.

A war will happen when this occurs in my lifetime.

Dissolution of the Catholic Church

If St Malachy’s prediction about Pope Francis were to be believed, the Catholic Church would be vacated and taken over by other forces. In lieu of a Roman Catholic church (which apparently coincides with the spike of Evangelical Protestantism), we have a Latin Union or a kind of resurrected Roman Empire.

It was through the Christianisation of the Roman Empire that we got Roman Catholicism as well as modern day nations like France, Spain, Italy and Portugal which went onto forge their own empires. The Latin Union would unify all four in addition to their own colonies as well as Romania and non-Romance speaking Catholic Europe.

On one hand, we could see Irish get boosted a lot though realistically it takes other factors to boost its status and usage even more. On the other hand, such languages will be detrimental to the survival of others just as Latin was detrimental to Gaulish before.

The Latin Union replacing the Catholic Church would be really frightening to many practising Catholics, so lieu of Catholicism they’d flock to other churches instead as apparent secularisation increases.

The downsides of the new Roman Empire

Should the Roman Empire be properly resurrected in this century, it could end up being more expansive with significantly more African and Asian colonies via France, Spain, Italy and Portugal than the old one did. Of course, it’ll be just as bad as the old one in some regards.

Just as the prioritisation and elevation of Latin destroyed Gaulish in France, the promotion of Romance languages (and the addition of Irish and Polish as the new Roman Empire replaces the Roman Catholic church) will hinder the preservation of certain languages.

While there’s some growing awareness of endangered languages, a bigger question is if all of them will ever persist. It could reinstate prior problems especially in recent former colonies like Ethiopia, Cameroon and Philippines.

I could even be alive enough to see this, especially when not only Spanish is reused again in the Philippines but also witness a properly resurrected Roman Empire.