Only Linguists Will Be Able to Score 31/35 on This Romance Language Test.

By: Zoe Samuel
Estimated Completion Time
4 min
Only Linguists Will Be Able to Score 31/35 on This Romance Language Test.
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About This Quiz

The Romance languages are the family that derive from Classical Latin. It's important to note that they are not called the Romance languages because they are romantic, though certainly some of them (Italian in particular) do lend themselves especially well to the arts of romance. They actually get their names from being derived from languages spoken by Romans. The word "romance" with a small "r" has the same origin, as it meant a verse written in the vernacular - that is, the Romance languages - as opposed to in Latin. The meaning only morphed later on to refer specifically to a certain sort of love or love story. So Romance came first, and romance later!

The Romance languages are found all over Europe, and due to later empires, now all over the world. The fullest extent of the Western Roman Empire left a legacy behind it that was carried by these civilizations to the corners of the globe. This means that the Romance languages are among the most-spoken on the planet. There are also Eastern Romance languages, though none of them originally extended outside Europe. The happy result of this is that if you learn a single one of them, picking up a second or third will get a lot easier - and if you know Latin, then arguably you already know a little piece of each! How well do you remember them?

Which Romance language is closest to Latin?
Italian
Moldovan
Romanian
French
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Romanian is the closest linguistically, though it is less similar to the other Romance languages than they are to each other.

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How many people speak a Romance language as a first or second language?
500 million
200 million
A billion
100 million
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

A billion people speak a Romance language.

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Is English a Romance language?
Yes
No
Sort of
It used to be.
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

English is not a Romance language, though it borrows heavily from all of them.

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Where would you find Iberian Romance languages?
Spain
Portugal
Andorra
All of the above.
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The Iberian peninsula contains all these countries, as anyone who has flown Iberian Airlines probably knows.

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Which is the most widely spoken Romance language?
French
Italian
Spanish
Portuguese
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Spanish is spoken by around 500 million people, or 47% of Romance speakers.

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From how many Romance languages does English borrow words?
All of them!
Just French
Just Italian
Just Spanish
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

English gets words from all over the place. It doesn't discriminate!

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Other than in Romania, in what country is Romanian the main spoken language?
Belarus
Moldova
Hungary
Serbia
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Moldovan is also a Romance language, but Romanian is spoken there.

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From which country do the "Gallo-Romance" languages come?
France
Belgium
Holland
Andorra
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

France was the Roman province of Gaul, hence French things are referred to as Gallic.

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Which of these is NOT a Gallo-Romance language?
French
Norman
Venetian
Italian
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Surprisingly, Venetian is also a Gallic language, as well as Norman and French.

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What letter is usually found at the end of pluralized words in Western Romance languages?
O
A
S
T
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

You say it when you use English, after all! Just add an S (usually) and you have yourself a plural.

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What trait of most Romance languages differs from German when it comes to gendered words?
German has one gender, but Romance languages have two.
Trick question: They each have three genders.
German has three genders, but Romance languages have two.
German has no gendered words, but Romance languages have two.
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

German has masculine, feminine and neuter. Romance languages have two genders: masculine and feminine.

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Which of these describes typical word order in a Romance language?
Subject, verb, object eg I like chocolate.
Verb, subject, object eg Like I chocolate.
Object, subject, verb eg Chocolate, I like.
Subject, object, verb eg I chocolate like.
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Subject, verb, object is the common structure in Romance languages, as well as English. For example, "I wrote the note."

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How do Romance languages feel about double negatives, ie. "I don't know nothing"?
They see them as having the negative meaning, so, "I don't know nothing" means "I do not know anything."
They all disagree.
They don't use them.
They see them as having the positive meaning and canceling each other out, so, "I don't know nothing" means "I do know something."
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

There is some disagreement, but broadly the Romance languages do not count negatives and pair them up to cancel each other out the way English does.

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Did the development of the formal second person "you" develop in Latin itself and get passed down, or did it come later?
It comes from Latin.
It came later.
It actually developed multiple times in different languages.
It developed twice: once in Latin and once in Romanian.
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Latin only had one "you," but a number of Romance languages have two. For example the French informal "tu" versus the formal "vous".

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Which Romance language is predominantly spoken in Brazil?
Spanish
Portuguese
Italian
French
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Brazil has many languages but Portuguese is the biggest.

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We've established Romance only has two genders and Latin has three. Into which gender did neuter words in Latin mostly get absorbed?
Masculine
Feminine
Neither, they all died out.
A mix of both
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

It's not a hard and fast rule, but most neuter Latin words ended up being masculine.

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Which Romance language originated the furthest away from the others?
Spanish
Italian
Romanian
French
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Most of the Romance languages are bunched up around the Mediterranean coast, but Romanian is off in Eastern Europe carrying the flag for the linguistic group!

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An auxiliary verb is one that helps you create a tense eg "I go" becomes "I had gone" or "I am going". Which are the two main auxiliary verbs used in Romance languages?
Have and be
Do and want
Do and have
Think and be
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Have and be are the two main helping verbs in the Romance languages. That means they help other verbs to create other tenses, eg "it was written" or "I am doing".

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How many Romance languages have status as a national language?
1
3
5
7
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

French, Italian, Romanian, Portuguese and Spanish/Castilian are all Romance languages with national status.

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Why are they called "Romance" languages anyway?
Because they're romantic.
Because of the Romans.
Because they have a sing-song quality like music.
Because the Romantic writers used them all.
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Romance languages come from the Romans!

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By what other name is Vulgar Latin known?
Popular Latin
Vernacular Latin
Worldly Latin
Modern Latin
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Classical Latin is the written word. Vulgar or Popular Latin is how people actually spoke.

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What is one theory for the fact that no Romance language developed in Britain?
It wasn't a Roman province that long.
The Celts killed all the Romans in Britain.
Vulgar/popular Latin never got established there.
Celtic is more fun to say because of all the spitting.
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Britannia was a Roman colony for a while, but Vulgar Latin never really made it over. It was considered a terrible assignment by the Romans that you only took if you couldn't get a better one in eg Gaul (France), which is probably why not too many Romans wanted to live there.

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Which language does NOT enjoy the label "semi-Romance"?
Albanian
Maltese
German
English
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

German comes from a different linguistic family tree, but English, Maltese and Albanian are all considered semi-Romantic.

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Some words are the same (or almost exactly the same) in Spanish, French, Portuguese and Italian! Which of these words is NOT the same in all four?
Art
January
Legal
War
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Art, legal, and war (guerre/guerra etc) are all basically the same in all four languages. January, however, sounds totally different in each.

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Other than Latin, what language heavily influenced Spanish?
Russian
Indonesian
Aztec
Arabic
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Spanish is heavily influenced by Latin, but also by Arabic due to the Moorish period when it was an Islamic country.

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To which linguistic family do all the Romance families belong?
Indo-European
Niger-Congo
Austronesian
Sino-Tibetan
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

All Romance languages are Indo-European. There are up to 147 language groups in the world. Indo-European is one of the biggest.

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What percentage of Romance language speakers speak Portuguese?
42%
26%
11%
17%
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Portuguese is the second most widely-spoken Romance language, with 26% of speakers.

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If you want to learn a Romance language, which language is it wise to start with?
French
Trick question: any of them is fine.
Spanish
Romanian
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

There's no right answer here. You might choose to learn the one that comes easiest, which is usually the one most similar to your native tongue. Alternatively, you might learn the one that is most likely to be useful, the one that the highest number of your your friends speak, or the one that you like most.

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How many languages belong to the Indo-European family?
384
439
102
239
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The Romance languages only represent a small fraction of the total Indo-European family, but they are among the most widely-spoken.

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Romance languages emerged after the fall of Rome - so when did these languages start appearing?
Between the 6th and 9th centuries
Between the 5th and 8th centuries
Between the 4th and 7th centuries
Between the 8th and 11th centuries
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Romance languages began to appear after the Roman Empire fell around the year 400 AD.

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Thanks to English loan words, three letters were added to the Portuguese language in 2009. Which of the below is NOT one of them?
K
Y
W
Q
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

K, W, and Y were not added to Portuguese until 2009. People had been using them before that, but they were not officially included.

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Due to the Portuguese Empire, the Portuguese language made it to Africa and South America. Which of the following countries does NOT contain more than a million Portuguese speakers?
Angola
Malawi
Mozambique
Brazil
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Portuguese is spoken in many countries including Angola and Mozambique in Africa.

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What percentage of Romance language speakers speak Romanian?
5%
7&
12%
4%
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Romanian is only spoken by a few million people, representing 4% of the total number of Romance speakers.

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Where would you find an official Latin spelling book?
Trick question: Latin never had official spellings.
Roman libraries.
There's one in Constantinople.
The Vatican has one!
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Since hardly anybody was literate, Latin didn't have spellings, just words that you could write down however you liked.

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What Latin word is the root for the word "male"?
Masculus
Manima
Vir
Puer
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Male and female actually do not have the same etymological root. Masculus is the origin of "male," having made it through the Romance languages before hopping to English.

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You Got:
/35
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