6 Reasons Why You Should Learn Basque
There’s a lot that goes into choosing your next foreign language. Do you want to learn a language that will help you in your career? A language that will allow you to travel more easily? A language that will help you connect with your heritage? Or maybe you just want to learn a language that not a lot of other people know how to speak.
When it comes to Basque, it ticks a lot of boxes. Basque is the language spoken by the Basque people, who live in parts of Spain and France. It’s a unique language, unrelated to any other languages spoken in Europe.
In this article, we’ll discuss some of the things that make Basque unique, and present reasons why you should consider adding it to your list of languages to learn.
Basque is the oldest language in Europe
Basque is thought to be the oldest language in Europe, predating even Greek and Latin. This is because the Basque people are thought to be the descendants of the original inhabitants of Europe.
Put simply, learning Basque is like taking a trip back in time. 5-10 thousand years back in time, to be precise.
(Learn more about Basque’s unique origins.)
Not many people speak Basque
Basque is only spoken by about 750,000 people, most of whom live in Spain. Now, this number may seem high, but in relation to other languages, it’s actually quite low.
This means that if you learn Basque, you’ll be part of a select group of people who can communicate in this language. Not only will you be helping to keep Europe’s oldest language alive, but you’ll be able to speak and write in “code”, safe in the knowledge that you probably won’t be understood by those around you.
Basque is a unique language
Basque is unlike any other language in the world. Though it’s spoken in Europe, it is unrelated to any of the Indo-European languages that are spoken on the continent.
This means that if you’re looking for a real challenge, learning Basque is a great option. You’ll have to start from scratch, learning a completely new set of grammar rules and vocabulary words.
Basque has a rich culture and history
The Basque people have a rich culture, with their own music, clothing, dance, food, and art. For example, the Basque instrument known as the trikitixa is a type of accordion that is used to play traditional Basque music.
In culinary arts, the Basque Country is especially renowned for its pintxos, small dishes that are served as appetizers.
Learning the language is a great way to get to know this culture better, and to connect with the people who live in this region.
You’ll also be able to learn about the Basque people’s long and complicated history, told from their perspective. The Basque Country has been fought over by Spain and France for centuries, and the language has been banned at various times in history.
Basque grammar is challenging
Do you like a challenge? If so, learning Basque may be right up your alley. The grammar is quite different from that of other languages, particularly as it pertains to verb conjugation. Anyone interested in linguistics will find the quirks of Basque grammar to be fascinating.
(Read more about the features of Basque that make it complex.)
Basque is spoken in a beautiful part of the world
Traveling to and spending time in a part of the world where your target language is spoken is not only a great motivator for learning but will boost your language skills considerably. And in the case of Basque, you couldn’t ask for a better setting.
The Basque Country is home to some of Europe’s most stunning scenery, from the snow-capped Pyrenees Mountains to the beautiful beaches along the Bay of Biscay.
Whether you want to surf, hike, or simply relax and enjoy the view, learning Basque will give you an added reason to visit this beautiful part of the world.
Setting up a business in the Basque Country
Although almost all people living in the Basque Country speak either Spanish (in Spain) or French (in France), if you plan to do business in the region, it would be beneficial to learn Basque.
If you can speak the language, you’ll have a leg up on your competition when it comes to bidding on contracts, as well as building relationships with potential clients and business partners.
Not only that, but you’ll also find that the people you do business with will appreciate your efforts to learn their language.
Choosing which language to learn is as personal a decision as any other. There’s no right or wrong choice. If you’re new to language learning, it’s important to choose a language that you’re both passionate about and that has plenty of resources available to help you get started.
But if you’re looking for an ancient language that’s unique, challenging, and spoken in a picturesque part of the world, Basque may be the perfect choice for you.
What do you think? Are you convinced yet? If you want an introduction to the language, learn some common greetings and salutations in Basque.